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Fire destroys family home in Cloghans Hill

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – John Griffin and his wife Josephine from Cloghans Hill, Tuam, on the Galway-Mayo border, are searching for accommodation after their house burnt down last night

The Griffins lost their family home and its contents when fire ripped through the building last night

John and Josephine Griffin were left with little more than the clothes on their backs as flames engulfed their home during the storm

Their grandchildren are lucky to have Christmas presents as these were rescued from beneath the tree in the blazing building by brave fire fighters.

The couple was asleep when they were alerted by the ringing of the smoke alarm at approximately 11 last night

Now the family is seeking to rent a house for the Christmas, as family members including their son Wayne and his wife Vicky who are flying in from China tonight will not be celebrating the festive season in the family home this year as planned.

However John and Josephine are happy to be alive after firefighters from Ballinrobe, Tuam, Claremorris and Castlebar battled for over three hours to get the blaze under control in the early hours of today

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Galway TD one of seven who joined Geoghegan family protest

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – A Galway West TD was one of seven TDs from seven different political groups who joined a protest by the Geoghegan family at the gates of the Dáil today.

Catherine Connolly joined the family in calling for a new public inquiry into the environmental and health impacts of Aughinish Alumina’s factory in Limerick.

The issue was also raised with the Taoiseach earlier today by TDs Paul Murphy, Matt Carthy and Mattie McGrath.

Deputy Murphy highlighted new evidence he claims discredits the previous investigations into serious animal and human health problems near the factory.

This new evidence includes a previously unpublished letter by the IDA and notes of their private meeting with Aughinish, which Deputy Murphy says proves the IDA ‘sought to influence’ the outcome of the health investigation.

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Local TD tells Dáil crisis in homecare leaving older people in their beds all day

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – The ongoing home care crisis is leading to older people staying in bed all day.

Sinn Féin TD Claire Kerrane told the Dáil 412 people in Roscommon and Galway have been approved for home care hours and are not receiving them, as there is no carer.

She argues there is clearly a recruitment and retention crisis in the home care sector.

It comes as the government has established a workforce advisory group to examine the issue and make recommendations.

However, Deputy Kerrane argues, the group is not due to report until September, and families cannot wait.

She says it’s heartbreaking that some older people are staying in bed all day as a result of the crisis.

Speaking in response, Minister of State for Older People Mary Butler said efforts are underway to try to make homecare a more viable career choice.

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Landowners impacted by Galway to Athlone greenway corridor concerned at level of consultation

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Galway county council officials have moved to defend the level of consultation with landowners over the planned greenway, as some in the South and East of the county push for group meetings and responses to their objection letters.

It comes as the development of a 140 kilometre cycling path between Galway and Athlone has become a major cause for concern for a number of landowners along the proposed route.

A number have stated they have not received adequate consultation, while many more are refusing to engage with the project team.

Raymond Finnerty and Aoife McCabe are some of those impacted with farmland based in Newtown in Kilcolgan.

They attended two meetings, with one via Zoom and another held in person.

They have submitted two letters with objections and have had no contact back.

They are pushing for a group meeting of four farmers impacted from their local area, instead of individual meetings.

In a statement, Galway Council officials say at this stage of the process, all that has been identified is a ‘preferred corridor’, not a specific route.

They further state that within that corridor there are many possible routes , so as of yet individual landholdings have not been finalised.

Officials have also moved to defend the level of consultation stating Project Liaison Officers have had over 450 face to face or phone calls meetings with landowners since January alone within the preferred corridor.

It concludes that every effort will be made to minimise the number of private land holdings directly affected by the proposed greenway.

To hear more, tune in to Galway Bay fm news on the hour

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