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Connacht Tribune

Meetings to clarify beef aid package

Francis Farragher

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Joe Healy: Aid for farmers only.

GALWAY farmers have been invited attend one of two West of Ireland IFA regional information meetings next week aimed at working out the ‘nuts-and-bolts’ of the €100 million EU/Government Brexit Beef Aid Package.

A meeting of the IFA National Council in Dublin on Tuesday set out the broad parameters that they will be seeking from the Dept. of Agriculture for the administration and payment of the ‘beef money’.

After the meeting, IFA President Joe Healy, said that the National Council of the IFA had endorsed their Livestock Committee recommendation of targeting the money for beef finishers of prime cattle (steers, heifers and young bulls) – and also the suckler cow sector.

“It is essential that the €100m Brexit beef package is targeted to the farmers who need it most. It must be paid without delay and there must be no strings attached.

“This fund was secured after a lot of hard work and lobbying by IFA. It’s for farmers – not for factories, agents or dealers. We will insist it is paid quickly and directly to farmers,” said Joe Healy.

The two West of Ireland IFA regional meetings are being held at McWilliam Park Hotel in Claremorris on Tuesday night next at 8pm and on the Friday night of June 14 in the Abbey Hotel, Roscommon, also at 8pm.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Black Gate provides perfect stage for Ultan’s new songs

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Ultan Conlon....back home for Galway gig.

Groove Tube with Cian O’Connell

It’s been a busy eighteen months for Loughrea singer-songwriter Ultan Conlon. Since releasing his third full-length LP in April of last year, he has written and performed extensively both at home and abroad, culminating in a recent, fruitful trip to LA.

But it’s all back home shortly, as Ultan plays the Black Gate on Sunday, November 10, in his final Galway show of 2019.

Among some carefully chosen older songs, he will be premiering a selection of new material set for release on his upcoming album, entitled There’s a Waltz.

Recorded in LA with esteemed bluegrass musician Sean Watkins, Ultan’s fourth release was born out of connections he has held on the other side of the Atlantic for several years.

“I’ve been to LA a few times,” he notes. “About four years ago, the second or third time I’d been there, I hired a PR lady and she sent a couple of my videos to a venue there called Largo.

“I’d never heard of it because I don’t know the LA scene but the day I arrived, he had asked her if I’d do a gig that night. It was really nice – a 300 plus seated theatre.

“On the walls there were photos of massive stand-up comics and musicians… Zach Galifianakis and Aimee Mann… I was thinking ‘Maybe this is just LA and this just happens here’ but it turns out Largo is a go-to spot for a lot of them and it’s hard enough to get into but I was lucky enough to get in.”

Largo has proved to be a valuable stage for Ultan. From that initial gig four years ago, he has forged relationships with a variety of talented musicians and producers in the US.

“I met people through doing the gigs,” he recalls. “The guy who produced this album, Sean Watkins, originally played in Nickle Creek, a very big bluegrass band with Grammies and multi-million selling albums.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Hurler’s unique double – 25 years after first win

Francis Farragher

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Loughrea's Seán Mahony with his sons, John and Oisín, after he helped his side win the County Junior B hurling title at Ballinasloe on Saturday.

A LOUGHREA hurler turned back the clock by exactly 25 years at the weekend when helping his team to a county final success, playing in the same position that he lined out in a quarter of a century ago.

Seán Mahony from the townland of Moyleen again wore the No. 2 jersey in their 1-20 to 2-15 Junior B victory over Killimordaly at Duggan Park, Ballinasloe on Saturday, to round off a remarkable series of coincidences.

It really was a case of ‘Take Two’ for Seán Mahony on Saturday: the opposition was the same . . . as was the venue . . . and the October setting . . . while the same manager – Mike Kelly – was again in charge of Loughrea.

“I’d day that there’s about five of our team on Saturday who weren’t born when we won it back in October, 1994, while our centre back last weekend, Ray Regan, was our mascot 25 years ago.

“I was nearly more nervous playing in the final today than I was 25 years ago. When you’re playing a final at 19 years of age you have no fear – the older you get, the more inclined you are to think about it,” Seán Mahony told the Connacht Tribune.

Another one of the ‘older brigade’ – Johnny Maher – also played a key role in last Saturday’s triumph while Nigel Shaughnessy came on as a sub and won a late penalty for Loughrea.

See full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City  and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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Connacht Tribune

Dancing with wolves is Green way of the future

Francis Farragher

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Country Living with Francis Farragher

THE Green Party, in their relatively short existence, have had their ups and downs but in a world of ever-growing environmental awareness, there can be little doubt but that they have a role to play in the country’s political landscape.

Most of the time, what they say, makes a fair bit of sense in terms of reducing and eventually eradicating our dependence on fossil fuels; the need to protect our ecology and natural environment; and to produce our food in a more sustainable fashion.

But, every so now and then, with the try-line in view, they tend to drop the ball in the clumsiest of fashions. Could I really believe what I was hearing last week? Yes, the Greens want to reintroduce wolves to Ireland.

No, it wasn’t April 1 nor was it fake news. There was the leader of the Greens, one Eamon Ryan, making the case for the return of wolves to the Irish countryside, all by way of a great vision to turn our farmlands into one gigantic wildlife park.

For a minute or two, I thought of all the sheep farmers over the years that I’ve written stories about, whose flocks were savaged by marauding dogs, animals that should have been under domestic control – but weren’t – and who wreaked the most horrendous cruelty, often during night-time hours.

Publicity campaigns and damages claims against pet owners have helped at times to reduce the incidence of dog attacks, but at least this is a threat than in many cases can be contained.

There aren’t too many farms in Galway, or across the West of Ireland, who are more than a mile away from rough areas of cover – bushes, briars, trees and gorse – an environment that would make an ideal recluse for the new wolves of Ireland.

Maybe, we should all forget about farming, and revert back to leaving Ireland as a rural wilderness of no cars with wolves roving freely through the fields and forests while it might also be convenient to round-up the locals and move them all into the nearest town.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app

The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City  and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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