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Extent of Galway Leisureland flood damage laid bare

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Flooding damage to Leisureland in Salthill

The full extent of the sheer scale of the storm and flood damage caused to Leisureland is revealed today.

These photographs, supplied to the Galway City Tribune by reader Anne Carey, reveal to the public for the first time the nature and extent of the pummelling the facility took during the winter storms.

The swimming pool itself is almost unrecognisable – it is just a concrete shell, with all the tiles, which were damaged during the storm, removed.

The tiling area along the sides of the pool is also bare, while the walls are stripped of all tiling.

The dressing rooms, showers, lockers and changing facilities are even less recognisable – at this stage they are just a concrete shell and could be mistaken for a building site anywhere in the country.

The photos show just how much construction work remains to be carried out at the facility before it is re-opened by the new October deadline.

See the full story in this week’s Galway City Tribune

Connacht Tribune

Marine Park looks dead in the water

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An artist’s impression of the proposed Páirc na Mara complex in Cill Chiaráin.

Plans to develop a marine park in Conamara were dealt a major blow this week after An Bórd Pleanála refused to grant planning permission for the development.

Galway County Council had already rejected proposals by Údarás na Gaeltachta to develop Páirc na Mara on lands east of Cill Chiaráin village.

The regional authority responsible for economic, social and cultural development of the Gaeltacht, appealed the decision to the planning appeals board but it too has refused to grant permission.

This latest decision blows a big hole in Údarás na Gaeltachta’s job creation plans for Conamara – its five-year employment strategy launched last year hinged on jobs growth from Páirc na Mara.

Reacting, in a statement to the Connacht Tribune, Údarás na Gaeltachta said it was awaiting ABP’s Inspector’s Report.

“This will help to inform how we proceed in the coming weeks. We remain committed to the Páirc na Mara project and to sustainable development and job creation in the Iorras Aithneach Gaeltacht area,” it added.

In a letter from ABP member, Chris McGarry, the Board gave two reasons for refusing the plan.

They related to the lack of information about the potential impacts of climate change; and the potential impact on water levels and the water supply in nearby water sources.

The proposal involved phase one of the continued development of a marine innovation park on a brownfield site of nine hectares, to include a number of marine-based industrial facilities and educational and applied research sites at Cill Chiaráin.

Get the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or you can download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie. You can also download our Connacht Tribune App from Apple’s App Store or get the Android Version from Google Play.

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Connacht Tribune

Decommissioned generator at core of power cut chaos

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Out of action...the ESB sub-station in Ballybane last week. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

A standby transformer which could have averted a major electricity outage across Galway City was out of action due to moving outdoor equipment into a new building. –

The cause of the power cut affecting 8,000 residents and forcing hundreds of businesses to shut for most of last Thursday emerged as City Chief Executive Brendan McGrath said the chronic traffic delays proved that a ring road and a fourth bridge over the Corrib was desperately needed.

Matt Cunningham, area manager for ESB Networks, declined to speak to the Connacht Tribune – but in an interview on Galway Bay FM he explained that the fault occurred at the ESB 110kv substation in Ballybane where four high voltage transformers are in operation.

“One tripped out on a fault…all these transformers have protection relays and protection gear on them but unfortunately this one tripped out,” he stated.

Crews were in the middle of a major project transferring all of the outdoor switch gear inside a new building at the site.

“The standby one [transformer] was not on stand-by, it was switched out in preparation for this other work but we were able to get it back as quickly as we could.”

Get the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or you can download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie. You can also download our Connacht Tribune App from Apple’s App Store or get the Android Version from Google Play.

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Connacht Tribune

Bono has finally found what’s he’s looking for!

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Former publican Des Cheevers with Bono and Ed Burns in Moylough.

Publican Thomas Cheevers was sitting at home last Thursday ahead of St Patrick’s Day, traditionally one of the biggest days in the calendar of his Moylough pub.

He decided to check the cameras of his pub to see if his nephew Matthew was managing okay behind the bar when he noticed a familiar face.

“I said to my wife, ‘oh my God Bono’s sitting at the counter’. She wouldn’t believe me. Then I showed her and there he was with my dad. And Edward Burns sitting beside him having a pint.”

There were around ten regulars in Cheevers last Thursday at 6.30pm when the Hollywood actor popped his head inside.

“Are we okay to have a pint?” he asked. Outside two Range Rovers had pulled up.

When he got the thumbs up, in came the U2 frontman, his wife Ali Hewson, their daughters Eve and Jordan, former supermodel Christy Turlington, her husband Ed.

Thomas legged it to the bar to discover his dad, Des, was making a cup of tea for Ali who was driving. Another regular, Philip Windsor, had bought the two lads their Guinness. The women at the window seat sat and drank hot whiskeys.

“It was surreal, very peculiar. My dad was chatting away to Bono. They were talking about the rugby match on Saturday. I knew I knew Ed Burns’ face but couldn’t place him. I told him I know you’re an actor and it must be strange not to be asked for photos. He said that’s what happens when you hang out with Bono.”

Get the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or you can download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie. You can also download our Connacht Tribune App from Apple’s App Store or get the Android Version from Google Play.

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