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CITY TRIBUNE

It’s baseball playoff season so rugby fever has not yet hit Hiroshima

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Mark Gardner (left) and friend

Mark Gardiner, Our Man in Japan

It’s been up the walls since Friday.  Rugby fever hasn’t exactly hit Hiroshima apart from the small little pocket that is Molly Malone’s.  It’s baseball playoff season so most of the locals will be focused on that until Hiroshima gets knocked out.

Luckily a lot of the rugby tourists have decided to pay Hiroshima a visit between games to keep us busy.

Friday night for the opening game there was a nice buzz around the pub with a mix of Japanese and tourists all shouting for Japan until a sole Russian fan waltzed in draped in her country’s flag to a standing ovation. After a nervy start it all worked out in the end and Japan got their bonus point victory but if felt like everyone was a bit underwhelmed.

Next came super Saturday and although it was busy it felt like everybody was holding back for Sunday.  I was expecting most of the Irish to be up around Yokohama but was pleasantly surprised when green jerseys started showing up along with a few Scots.  Felt sorry for them in the end with noting to cheer for throughout the game.  All our Japanese customers were cheering for Ireland as they clearly believe their best chance is that last game against Scotland.

It can be quite tricky getting my son excited about the six nations because it’s always too late to watch it live over here.  So all he gets is the highlights which just isn’t the same.  He loved every minute of the Irish game, the intensity of it all.  He wouldn’t take off his Irish jersey for 2 days and even slept with a rugby ball the night of the game.  On Saturday he said he’ll be cheering both Japan and Ireland but hopes that Ireland win because they have a better chance of winning the trophy! I like the way he thinks.

We took a day off on Monday as we usually do and opened again Tuesday.  With it being Russia v Samoa I wasn’t expecting it to be too busy but one group after another just kept coming and before we knew it we were full up again.  This time it was mostly Irish, Aussies and a few sheepish Scots.

There was definitely a hungover vibe about everyone so it was a nice calm atmosphere but the pints were still flowing.

A  fella walked in and says he works with my cousin Margaret in Tullamore and she sends her regards.

Tis great to feel like I’m running a pub in Ireland again!

Follow Mark Gardiners World Cup Diary here and on the Galway App

Mark Gardiner is a former Galway resident now resident in Hiroshima, Japan where he owns and operates Molly Malones Bar. Read his weekly unique insight into the 2019 Rugby World Cup here and on the Galway App. 

Galway App Links

Apple – https://tinyurl.com/yy8b6uq7
Android – https://tinyurl.com/y5pcyunp

 

CITY TRIBUNE

Council officials branded ‘ignorant’ after reneging on circus agreement

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – A circus branded City Hall in Galway ‘ignorant and arrogant’ after a spat over access to public space.

Circus Gerbola criticised Galway City Council for limiting the days its big top was permitted in Claude Toft carpark in Salthill and for reneging on an agreement.

The touring troupe said that last January, it provisionally booked the carpark from August 4-21. In early July, the Council emailed the circus and said it would be limited to seven days only.

Event Producer Jane Murray said she then secured a verbal compromise to rent the carpark for 10 days, including two weekends. But then the Council contacted the circus again and insisted that the site could be used for seven days only.

“I wouldn’t call them clowns because I think it would be an insult to clowns and generations of clowning. They were just extremely ignorant and arrogant. They were so unempathetic,” fumed Ms Murray.

They then scrambled to find alternative accommodation, in Kinvara, for performances today, Saturday and Sunday.

The third planned week has been moved to Conamara. From next Monday, the big top moves to Fíbín theatre company grounds in An Tulach, Cois Fharraige, for a series of events.

A Council statement said the matter was discussed at length internally.

“The carpark in question is relied upon by locals and tourists alike for parking, particularly during the busy tourist season. The best compromise in this situation was to permit the circus to take over full use of the car park for seven days. We do envisage complaints/representations from locals at being prevented from using this car park for a full week,” it said.

This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of this story, see the August 12 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Residents call on Galway City Council to tackle burning of rubbish

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – Local residents have called on the authorities to tackle the problem of an ongoing illegal dump in the Castlegar area with the rubbish being burnt off on a regular basis.

A particularly intense fire was set off in the Bruckey area on Tuesday afternoon last with black smoke billowing from the blaze – forcing local people to close their windows and doors.

According to one local resident, even the Fire Brigade couldn’t access the blaze which eventually burnt itself out over the following days.

“This has been going on for the past four years and we have made several overtures to the City Council on the issue as well as contacting the Gardaí, but nothing is being done about this.”

He said that the land being used as dump and fire site was rented and added that those burning waste were ‘a complete law onto themselves who did whatever they liked’.

(Photo: the fire burning on Tuesday)

This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of this story, see the August 12 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Councillors ignore Transport Authority recommendation on estate access

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – A submission by the National Transport Authority (NTA) – seeking to restrict new access points along the Western Distributor Road to ‘cyclists and pedestrians’ only – has been defeated at a City Council meeting.

Councillors voted 12-4 to reject the NTA submission presented in the draft Galway City Development Plan (2023-29) which sought to prevent new access points being provided for vehicular traffic.

The NTA in their submission said that their proposal was aimed at ‘protecting investment in public transport’ and in ‘facilitating sustainable travel’.

In his response to the submission, City Council Chief Executive, Brendan McGrath, said that the Council did not want any further restrictions to be put in place.

Councillors Niall Murphy (Green Party) and Colette Connolly (Ind) had proposed the acceptance of the NTA submission in order to improve access for cyclists and pedestrians.

Senior Planner with the Council, Caroline Phelan, said that there was a substantial bank of land in this area (off the Western Distributor Road) and the objective was to be able to access zoned land.

Cllr Declan McDonnell (Ind) said that if land in such areas was prevented from being developed by a lack of access, it would have major implications for industry, jobs, housing and schools. “We have to allow access,” he said.

(Photo: The ‘Kingston Cross’ lands on the Western Distributor Road which were earmarked for a commercial and residential development anchored by Tesco and Decathlon: An Bord Pleanála previously ruled access points would be a traffic hazard, particularly when it came to cycling infrastructure and a bus corridor on the road).

This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of this story, see the August 12 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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