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Not our driest year but timing was perfect with 2014 weather

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The annual figures (top chart) for the past seven years are based on rainfall amounts as recorded by Brendan Geraghty, Abbeyknockmoy, who keeps a daily record of precipitation. The monthly comparisons (bottom chart), 2013 and 2014, are based on information sourced from the NUI Galway Automatic Weather Station. For those of you more familiar with inches, 200mms. is close on 8 inches (7.87”) while the average annual Galway rainfall over the past 50 years – almost 1,200mms. – is the equivalent of just over 47 inches (47.24”). Note: The difference in the two charts between the totals for 2013/14 is due to the fact that the measurements were taken in different locations in Galway.

Country Living with Francis Farragher

There’s an old half-truth about Ireland getting the same amount of rain every year, regardless of the very wet months or the dry ones that we get.

Of course no two years will exactly be the same in terms of rainfall amounts, but there’s certainly a grain of truth in the ‘all years are equal’ theory, as during most 12 months spells we tend to get just under the 50 inches mark.

Rarely is there anything approaching an even monthly spread of rainfall in Ireland, with the probability of a wet July just as strong as a saturated December or January. Looking back on 2014, the initial impression might be that it was a very dry year, and we all have memories of a generally good summer followed on by a glorious September.

My old friend, the late Frank Gaffney, always said that memory plays tricks with people’s perception of weather and when we look back on 2014, there is a tendency to forget the two very wet months we had in January and February.

The NUI Galway Automatic Weather Station recorded January rainfall in 2014 of 192mms. (7.5 inches) for January and 182mms. (7.2 inches) for February, two months of the year when we were buffeted by a series of Atlantic storms. 2014 actually ended up being a wetter year than average and a good bit (nearly three inches) damper than 2013 but of course it had the saving grace of a dry summer and autumn period.

Abbeyknockmoy weather recorder Brendan Geraghty had a total figure of 46.61 inches (1184mms.) for last year as compared to 43.7 inches (1110mms.) for 2013.

“I was a little surprised going through the figures to notice that last year was a fair bit wetter than 2013 but two very wet months at the start of 2014 was the main reason for this.

“Overall though for last year we couldn’t have ordered it much better. We got the rain when we could take it at the start of the year and then the drier and warmer conditions just came at the right time,” said Brendan Geraghty.

He said that so far this January a similar pattern seemed to be emerging with over two inches of rain falling in the first nine days while more of the same seems to be on the cards over the coming weeks.

The Galway rainfall figure trends have generally been replicated right across the country, according to the 2014 Met Eireann Annual Summary, with the precipitation figure, near or just above, the average.

A curious little trend to emerge in the past year was for parts of the West of Ireland to be drier and sunnier than parts of the East and Midlands with Belmullet on the north-western tip of Mayo enjoying the sunniest day of the year in 2014 with 15.8 hours of sunshine on June 17.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

 

CITY TRIBUNE

There is no vaccine for Hitler hyperbole!

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Bradley Bytes – a sort of political column with Dara Bradley

Galway County Councillor Noel Thomas lashed out at journalist Sinéad Ryan, when he claimed on Twitter that “Hitler would have loved you, Sinéad”.

The Fianna Fáil elected representative then deleted the tweet, which was “written in anger” and apologised “to anyone who may have been offended” by it.

But not before Ryan had taken a screenshot and re-tweeted it to her 22,000+ followers. She also reported the offending tweet to the social media giant and complained to FF HQ.

Noel Thomas didn’t back down, though. In another tweet, he said: “Just to let you know Sinéad I have also reported your tweet to Twitter. It is dangerous and very unhelpful to society to be making comments like you did.”

What was it that made the usually mild-mannered Moycullener see red, and spout Hitler hyperbole during a fit of rage? An opinion about Covid-19 vaccinations, of course!

Ryan said that after October 22, unvaccinated people, “shouldn’t be permitted into restaurants, pubs or indoor venues. If they won’t protect themselves, the rest of us must do it by dissociation”.

Whether the leader of the Third Reich would have approved of this sentiment is unclear. But Thomas’s party leader, Micheál Martin, clearly does – it’s now Government policy to continue with vaccination certificates for indoor hospitality for the foreseeable future.

(Photo: Cllr Noel Thomas took to Twitter to tell journalist Sinéad Ryan that Hitler would have loved her. It was after her comments that unvaccinated people shouldn’t be allowed into public spaces indoors).

This is a shortened preview version of Bradley Bytes. To read more, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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Connacht Tribune

Mini pause proves there are no easy routes to recovery

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Melbourne...continuous lockdown for most of the past two years.

World of Politics with Harry McGee

You think we have it bad this week – what with the delay in a full reopening?  You could be living in Melbourne. The city with a population of five million has been under almost continuous lockdown for most of the past two years.

Since March 2020, there have been 262 days of lockdown in Melbourne, across six periods where people’s movements were incredibly restricted. That included curfews between 9pm and 5am.

Australia and New Zealand were two of only a handful of countries in the world which pursued elimination, rather than containment, strategies with the virus, or Zero Covid as it was called.

For a long time, it seemed like the correct strategy, the one setting the standard. Both countries clamped down hard with very restrictive lockdowns and effectively closed their borders.

They threw all their resources into testing, contact tracing and even testing the wastewater. Those who were identified as cases and close contacts were isolated. The countries also introduced mandatory hotel quarantine.

And it was very effective; when the Alpha (Essex) strain hit Ireland and other countries in December and January, both countries were fully open and enjoying unrestricted access to stadiums, hotels, restaurants, schools. Anytime, there was the hint of an outbreak strict local and regional lockdowns were imposed, some for several weeks, some for longer.

Sure, there were long and severe lockdowns. But there was also a lot of freedom, over 450 days without restrictions.

The strategy only worked if you cut off the country completely from all other countries in the world. New Zealand, for example, did that because it did not have sufficient capacity to deal with the kind of crisis China and Italy had faced, when people died because they could not be intubated, or there were not enough ventilators to go around.

There were downsides. The cost, for one, was exceptionally high. It meant a huge diminution in people’s personal rights. Limited availability in mandatory quarantine hotels meant a lot of New Zealanders and Australians living abroad were prevented from returning home.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

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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Connacht Tribune

Sporting rivalry doesn’t have to mean segregated supporters

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Dave O'Connell

A Different View with Dave O’Connell

Three sporting teams whose boundaries come up to the back door of each other’s patch were all in action at the one venue – two of them against each other – at the weekend.

If it was the Premiership, it wouldn’t – and couldn’t – have happened because there would be carnage either inside or outside the ground . . .or both.

But this was Pearse Stadium and the county senior football championship, an afternoon’s entertainment that might not have been on Sky Sports’ radar, but which was no less crucial for those with a vested interest all the same.

First up, Oughterard were up against their nearest neighbours Killannin for a semi-final place, while the other leg of this local stool saw reigning champions Moycullen successfully put their crown on the line against Tuam Stars.

It goes without saying that the crowd was in the high hundreds or low thousands; this wasn’t Old Trafford or Anfield with 60,000 or 70,000 fans congregating from all corners of the globe, never mind the country.

So it wasn’t Celtic and Rangers or City against United; it was neighbours and families and friends intermingled all in one place, albeit wearing different colours.

And even allowing for the intensity of local rivalries, the ties that bind are infinitely stronger than the boundaries that divide.

Half the Killannin team went to school in Oughterard. The Monaghans, who line out for Oughterard, are sons of Terence who was steeped in Moycullen football before moving parish.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

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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