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Connacht Tribune

Galway need to hit top gear to topple champs

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THE Galway senior footballers didn’t become a bad team overnight. They played badly last Saturday evening at Pearse Stadium. Really badly.

But surely there’s a kick in them now, as they face the might of Dublin at GAA headquarters in an All-Ireland semi-final (5pm)?

If you can’t get motivated for the Dubs at close-on a full-house at Croke Park, with a vociferous sea of blue on Hill 16, then you shouldn’t be playing Gaelic football.

The Tribesmen will be up for it – they’ll have to be – but whether they have the wherewithal to do what other teams have failed to do in 26 previous championship outings over the past four seasons is another question entirely.

Galway haven’t time to reflect on the below-par display against Monaghan in the final round of the Super 8s in Salthill . . . they have to park it and somehow rekindle the form that helped them draw with the Dubs at Pearse Stadium in the last round of the League, and push them close in the League Final at Croke Park.

It’s hard to believe but most of the Galway minor footballers, who line-out against Meath in the curtain-raiser at 3pm, weren’t even born the last time Galway featured in an All-Ireland senior football final. Times flies and all that but 17 years out in the wilderness during the business-end of the All-Ireland series would work up a hunger for success.

Saturday’s loss at the hands of the Ulster men isn’t the ideal preparations, with a seven-day turnaround, but it means they haven’t too much time to dwell on it.

Galway were flat, and Monaghan, who needed a result to reach the last four, were well up for it. It’s a nonsense to suggest Galway would ‘let’ Monaghan win, and Kevin Walsh would have had his charges fired-up for the visit of the Northerners but for whatever reason they just never got motoring.

Supporters tend to be fickle but the flak on social media directed at the Tribesmen over this below-par performance was at times over the top. Yes, losing at home was a downer but surely Galway had accumulated enough credit in the bank so far this season to be cut some slack for an off-day?

The hurlers’ achievement of reaching a second consecutive All-Ireland final has perhaps unfairly overshadowed the preparations of the footballers but a sizeable crowd from the county is expected to travel to the capital . . . probably in hope more than expectation.

See full preview and analysis in this week’s Tribune Sport.

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Connacht Tribune

Hospitality group raises €90k

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Lorraine Gallagher (left) and Charlene Hurley of Galway Hospice presented with a cheque for €27,537 by Brian Lynch and Eveanna Ryan of Connacht Hospitality.

The Connacht Hospitality Group this week announced that they raised more than €90,000 for a range of good Irish causes throughout 2022.

The group, which owns well-known Galway establishments including The Connacht Hotel, An Púcán, HYDE Hotel, Residence Hotel and 1520 Bar, as well as the Galway Bay Golf Resort, held a range of events at various stages of 2022 to fundraise for Claddagh Watch Patrol, the National Breast Cancer Research Institute (NBCRI), Galway Hospice and Make-A-Wish Ireland.

The announcement of over €90,000 worth of funds raised by the Connacht Hospitality Group for national and local charities comes off the back of the past 12 months which saw the group aim to make Corporate Social Responsibility a core part of their identity. This focus allowed them to become more aware of the causes that need assistance while also raising the profile of many of the charities.

The group arranged a diverse array of events to raise funds, and had lots of imaginative ways of grabbing the public’s attention. One event saw people attend HYDE Bar to savour a menu made by a mystery celebrity. In the end, it was revealed that TV personality Gráinne Seoige was the Executive Chef on a night that generated over €8,000 for the NBCRI.

Another event saw staff take part in a ‘Sunrise Swim’ in Salthill – and the public donated in their droves. All money raised went towards Claddagh Watch Patrol, an organisation that works to make Galway’s waterways safer by preventing accidental death and suicide.

One of the most successful fundraisers was the Galway Bay Golf Resort’s Golf Classic, which raised over €22,000 for Galway Hospice.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Residents in fear of gangs travelling to rural Galway to burgle homes

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Detective Superintendent Shane Cummins.

Residents in rural County Galway are living in fear of being burgled after one small area suffered at least 10 raids in the month of January.

Councillor Mary Hoade told a meeting of the County Joint Policing Committee (JPC) this week that those figures were for around Headford alone, as she called for additional resources to target travelling crime gangs visiting the county.

“Some of these burglaries are taking place in the morning when people go to work; some are in the evening; and others at night. It’s very frightening.  We recognise that these criminals are coming into the county, but we need more support to fight crime,” said Cllr Hoade.

“Rural garda stations have less resources . . . we’re relying on the resources in the nearest town,” she continued.

The Fianna Fáil councillor said gardaí couldn’t be everywhere at once, but communities needed to act as their eyes and ears and report suspicious activity when they see it. Detective Superintendent Shane Cummins (pictured) told the JPC that Galway was being targeted from time to time by travelling gangs.

“Three different gangs visited the county on one day recently,” said Det Supt Cummins.

Cllr Shelly Herterich Quinn (FF) said she believed increased CCTV and automatic number plate recognition cameras – to capture known gangs on tour – should be rolled out.
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article, see this week’s Connacht Tribune. You can support our journalism by buying a digital edition HERE.

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IDA Ireland’s €10m land purchase backs Oranmore for industry base

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Former Mayor of County Galway, Liam Carroll.

IDA Ireland has trebled its footprint on the outskirts of Oranmore by purchasing more than 100 acres of land to support industry.

It’s understood the semi-state body purchased some 42.9 hectares on the outskirts of Oranmore, for a price in excess of €10 million.

The strategic purchase of land adjacent to some 21 hectares zoned ‘business and technology’ and already owned by the IDA, was a “major vote of confidence” in Oranmore and Galway, according Cathaoirleach of the Athenry/Oranmore Municipal District, County Councillor Liam Carroll (FG).

It brings the total amount of land owned by the IDA in the area to over 150 acres.

This latest parcel, purchased at the end of 2022, is located off the N67 Claregalway Road, to the north and east of the Galway to Dublin Rail line.

“It would be ideally suited and attractive to a major multinational company or companies for the establishment of a high tech, pharmaceutical or medical device type facility,” Cllr Carroll said.

The entire site of 150-plus acres is close to the M6 motorway, and an hour away from international links, Shannon Airport and Ireland West Airport in Knock.  It is also close to a number of potential Park & Ride sites, identified by the National Transport Authority as being suitable for commuters.

It’s understood the land is zoned agricultural and would require a material alteration to the County Development Plan to be voted on by county councillors, in order for it to be rezoned before 2028.

(Photo: Cllr Liam Carroll, who believes the land could be developed for a tech or pharmaceutical hub).
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article, see this week’s Connacht Tribune. You can support our journalism by buying a digital edition HERE.

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