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Connacht Tribune

Galway need to hit top gear to topple champs

Dara Bradley

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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

Student nurses face all the risk – for no reward

Dara Bradley

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Working on the children’s ward of a busy hospital during a global pandemic is no joke; less funny still when you’re not getting paid for your toil.

All the risk and none of the rewards of qualified staff – that’s the lot of Edel Moore, a student nurse who is currently on placement at University Hospital Galway.

Edel, and hundreds of student nurses like her on placement in UHG and Portiuncula in Ballinasloe, want more than a round of applause and platitudes from Government.

“None of us want a pat on the back for struggling. We’d just like to be recognised,” she said.

“The Government are full-time talking about front-line workers, and they want to give them a ‘clap hands’. Then you see Junior Ministers getting massive raises. For what? What have they done for us, the student nurses, that they’re getting a €16,000 wage increase?

“We’ve put ourselves through a four year degree but all I’m worth is a clap? Thanks! It’s ridiculous. They say that front-line workers deserve all the help they can get but it just seems that the ones who are able to give us the help we need are not going to give us the help that we deserve.”

Edel Moore is a mature student originally from Westmeath but living in Leitir Mealláin in Connemara with her husband and three children.

A third year student nurse of NUIG, she is currently on placement at the paediatric ward at UHG.

Read the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or you can download our digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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Connacht Tribune

Island museum gets the green light

Declan Tierney

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An artist's impression of the proposed Inishbofin museum.

Work is expected to begin shortly on the construction of a museum on Inishbofin after planners gave the green light to the project.

The museum at Middlequarter is being developed by local historian and photographer Marie Coyne – and when completed, it will be home to items of historical significance from both Inishbofin and Inishark.

There is an existing museum on the island but it is too small to house the amount of artefacts, photographs and family histories that have been assembled over the years.

The new building will also include a photographic exhibition room, restoration workshop along with a gift shop and coffee dock. It is proposed that the new 3,400 square feet museum will be built on a site at the rear of Ms Coyne’s home.

Eamon Gavin of Eamon Gavin Architects based in Cornamona told the Connacht Tribune that this was an important project for the island and it was a welcome decision.

And he said that the green light would kickstart the process of conserving the vast and unique artefacts and archives built up over the years.

“As a practice, we have a long history of dealing with planning consultancy on unique rural sites in Connemara and the islands, therefore we fully understood how sensitive the proposed location of the project would be – the site is located in a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and National Heritage Area,” he said.

Read the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or you can download our digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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Connacht Tribune

Tuam woman a picture of health a year after Covid crisis

Declan Tierney

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Tuam's Kitty Farrell with her dog Lulu a year after her Covid diagnosis.

Last year was a Mother’s Day like no other for Kitty Farrell who spent it in the back of an ambulance being rushed to hospital with Covid – but the 80 year old Tuam woman can look forward to a more sedate celebration this time out….thankfully restored back to full health.

Kitty, from Ballygaddy Road, had developed a debilitating cough the previous week – and when she was admitted to UHG on Mother’s Day, she tested positive for the coronavirus despite a lack of symptoms.

The retired businesswoman spent the next nine days seriously ill in isolation – and all alone as her four children could not visit her.

“To be honest, I didn’t think I was going to come through it but I was so sick that at times, it didn’t really matter. But the thought of passing away in isolation made a bad situation even worse,” Kitty said at the time.

A year on, she is back to full health, and while she restricts her movements, Kitty told The Connacht Tribune that she is just happy to be alive and she spends her days ‘pottering about’ and looking forward to the arrival of family members.

“Even though I don’t particularly agree with the current lockdown because everyone should be responsible for their own behaviour, I am living a life of relative isolation at the moment,” she said.

Read Kitty’s full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now – or you can download our digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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