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Connacht Tribune

Dutch invasion at Battle of Aughrim site!

Francis Farragher

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A 326-year link between Holland and Aughrim will be made on Tuesday next when a party of ‘Williamites’ arrive at the East Galway village.

The part of 36 Dutch visitors – who describe themselves as ‘friends of Amerongen Castle’ – will take part in an historic tree-planting ceremony at the site of the Battle of Aughrim.

Cathaoirleach of Galway Co. Council, Cllr. Michael Connolly, will officially greet the party of Dutch visitors at 2pm next Tuesday.

“I’m looking forward to meeting these people and in its own little way, I think that this visit will show we’ve moved on here in Ireland in an inclusive way.

“We need to get the message out there that everyone is welcome to visit our places of historical interest from all sides – we want more and more people coming to these places on our own doorstep,” said Cllr. Connolly.

The local Aughrim Interpretative Centre will be opening specially for the guests who have links with Godard de Ginkell, Commander of the Williamite forces at the Battle of Aughrim on July 12, 1691. Amerongen Castle in the Netherlands is the birth place of General de Ginkell.

Local man Paddy Naughton, said that Tuesday’s visit by the 36 people from the Netherlands, was another historic day for the Aughrim area, and represented an important historical link with the battle of nearly 325 years ago.

“We look forward to welcoming these visitors to our site and Interpretative Centre and we also look forward to the Cathaoirleach of Galway Co. Council, Cllr. Michael Connolly taking part in the tree planting ceremony,” said Paddy Naughton.

Historian Dr. Padráig Lenihan of NUI Galway will be the keynote speaker at Tuesday’s event – Dr. Lenihan has written and spoken extensively of the significance of the battle in the context of Irish history.

He has pointed out that the Battle of Aughrim – rather than the Battle of the Boyne – was the most significant confrontation of the Williamite versus Jacobite war of the 17th century.

Most people will remember the story of the battle from their history classes which recounted that a turning point of the confrontation was the loss of the Jacobite commander, General St. Ruth, in the height of the action, who had his head blown off by a cannon ball.

Connacht Tribune

Galway to complete vaccine roll-out by end of the summer

Denise McNamara

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Ninety-five year old Margaret Kenny was first person to be administered the Covid-19 vaccination Practice Nurse Deirdre Furey at the Surgery Athenry.

On the first anniversary of Covid-19’s deadly arrival into Ireland, the head of the Saolta hospital group has predicted that all who want the vaccine will have received it by the end of the summer.

Tony Canavan, CEO of the seven public hospitals, told the Connacht Tribune that the HSE was planning to set up satellite centres from the main vaccination hub at the Galway Racecourse to vaccinate people on the islands and in the most rural parts of the county.

While locations have not yet been signed up, the HSE was looking at larger buildings with good access that could be used temporarily to carry out the vaccination programme over a short period.

“We do want to reach out to rural parts of the region instead of drawing in people from the likes of Clifden and over from the islands. The plan is to set up satellites from the main centre, sending out small teams out to the likes of Connemara,” he explained.

“Ideally we’d run it as close as possible to the same time that the main centres are operating once that is set up. Communication is key – if people know we’re coming, it will put people’s minds at rest.”

Get all the latest Covid-19 coverage in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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Connacht Tribune

Galway meteorologist enjoying new-found fame in the sun!

Denise McNamara

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Linda Hughes, presenting the RTÉ weather forecast live in studio.

Growing up in Galway where four seasons in a day is considered a soft one, Linda Hughes always had a keen interest in the weather.

But unlike most Irish people, instead of just obsessing about it, she actually went and pursued it as a career.

The latest meteorologist to appear on RTE’s weather forecasts hails from Porridgtown, Oughterard, and brings with her an impressive background in marine forecasting.

She spent six years in Aerospace and Marine International in Aberdeen, Scotland, which provides forecasts for the oil and gas industry.

The 33-year-old was a route analyst responsible for planning routes for global shipping companies. She joined the company after studying experimental physics in NUIG and doing a masters in applied meteorology in Redding in the UK.

“My job was to keep crews safe and not lose cargo by picking the best route to get them to their destination as quickly as possibly but avoiding hurricanes, severe storms,” she explains.

“It was a very interesting job, I really enjoyed it but it was very stressful as you were dealing with bad weather all the time because there’s always bad weather in some part of the world.”

Read the full interview with Linda Hughes in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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Connacht Tribune

Great-great-grandmother home after Covid, a stroke, heart failure and brain surgery

Dave O'Connell

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Mary Quinn...back home after an incredible few months.

Her family are understandably calling her their miracle mum – because an 81 year old great-great-grandmother from Galway has bounced back from Covid-19, a stroke, heart failure and brain surgery since Christmas…to return hale and hearty, to her own home.

But Mary Quinn’s family will never forget the trauma of the last three months, as the Woodford woman fought back against all of the odds from a series of catastrophic set-backs.

The drama began when Mary was found with a bleed on her brain on December 16. She was admitted to Portiuncula Hospital, and transferred to Beaumont a day later where she underwent an emergency procedure – only to then suffer a stroke.

To compound the crisis, while in Beaumont, she contracted pneumonia, suffered heart failure and developed COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease – the inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow from the lungs.

“Christmas without mom; things did not look good,” said her daughter Catherine Shiel.

But the worst was still to come – because before Mary was discharged, she contracted Covid-19.

Read Mary’s full, heart-warming story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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