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CITY TRIBUNE

‘Ugly’ perspex cover replaced on Browne Doorway

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The replacement of the “gross and ugly” perspex surround on the Browne Doorway has been welcomed by local independent councillor, Terry O’Flaherty.

Works have been completed and the surround which had lost all translucence when an attempt to clean the deteriorating protective casing turned it white and left the lower half of the historic structure hidden.

Cllr O’Flaherty said that she had been pressing for some time to have this work done and while she would have preferred the total removal of the surround, she believed that anything was an improvement.

“The replacement of the glass is only temporary until a permanent solution is found.

“It really took a lot of effort to get to this point and I have really been chasing after this for a long time – I have to say that I was ashamed of it the way it was,” exclaimed Cllr O’Flaherty.

Works carried out by Galway City Council included removing weathered material from around the monument and installing new, 10mm thick, clear polycarbonate sheeting.

Further works to the structure took place this week involving the re-polishing and cleaning of steel supports for the sheeting as well as the removal of staining utilising specialist product.

“The Browne Doorway is an iconic example of some of Galway’s finest architecture, dating back to the early 1600s. Unfortunately the structure has been deteriorating for some time resulting some years ago in it being surrounded by a perspex cage.

“Over time, the perspex had become badly weathered and ugly-looking and it has been standing out like a sore thumb at the top of Eyre Square – it had turned into an embarrassment.

“I was delighted to be informed by the Chief Executive of Galway City Council that the replacement of the perspex was underway and that the repairs to the steelworks would follow ,” said Cllr O’Flaherty.

The former Mayor said that the time had come to start working on the permanent preservation of what is one of the city’s most iconic landmarks.

A report last year outlined the necessity for funding to be set aside for the preservation of several historical structures – including the Browne Doorway as well as Menlo, Terryland and Merlin Park castles.

In Galway City Council’s budget for 2017, an allowance of €170,000 was made for this purpose – however, it is estimated that a total of €1.2million will be required to ensure their continued survival.

Cllr O’Flaherty said that the doorway should remain on Eyre Square given that it is a major attraction for tourists visiting the city.

“I was recently sitting in Eyre Square for a while and I observed the number of people taking pictures of the doorway and reading the plaque that is in front of it.

“By golly, if I have any say, it won’t be moved out of there – I feel that is where it should remain due to the fact that it is a great attraction for visitors.

“I think it should be given a railing, similar to the old railing in the Square and that a garden should be put in it – perhaps dedicated to all the literary giants that this city has produced,” she said.

The Browne Doorway dates back to 1627 when it stood as the entrance to the Browne ‘mansion’ in Abbeygate Street before it was moved to Eyre Square in 1904 by the Galway Corporation.

“We can’t just let it fall into total disrepair and we have a decision to make about its future – I know that will involve spending a lot of money, but we can’t just do nothing,” said Cllr O’Flaherty.

CITY TRIBUNE

No end in sight for work on junction near Galway Clinic

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From the Galway City Tribune – The City Council has declined to set a date for the completion of the Martin roundabout replacement near Galway Clinic – which was due to have opened more than a month ago.

In a statement, the Council would only confirm that the project was over 50 per cent completed.

“The project is now progressing to the surface type works including the installation of roadside kerbs, provision of footpaths and cycle lanes and road surfacing. These elements of the works will progress quite rapidly over the next month and there will be more of an appreciation for the progress on this project and the final layout will start to become apparent,” said a spokesperson.

“Ducting and preparatory works for the traffic signal installation is in progress and installation of the lights themselves will commence once the majority of surface works are complete. The final phase of the works will consist of significant landscaping of the junction.”

Work began on the junction in February, with an expected six-month schedule.

“There have been some delays to the programme as a result of industry-wide, supply-chain issues related to the war in Ukraine. There has also been further delays due to rock being encountered on site.

Rock was expected, however the hardness of the rock has been greater than anticipated and as such, has been slower to break and excavate on site,” according to the Council.
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article and to support our journalism, see the October 7 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Galway Docklands Festival set to make a big splash in the city!

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – The city’s link to the sea is to be celebrated later this month with the staging of the inaugural Galway Docklands Festival featuring a range of culinary treats, sea tours, demonstrations and talks.

Running from the weekend of Friday, October 21 to Sunday, October 23, the event has the aim of celebrating the city’s bond with the sea and the local waterways network.

Organised by the Galway Hooker Sailing Club, Galway Bay Boat Tours and Galway Bay Seafoods, the spectacle has a packed schedule of events – many of them free – through each of its three days.

The ‘pay events’ – ranging from €5 to €15 – include a coffee morning, beer and seafood sampling as well as an historical boat tour of the Claddagh and Galway Bay (€15).

Boatbuilder Cóilín Ó hIarnáin will be giving free demonstrations of his skills on each of the three days; Ciaran Oliver will give a walking tour of the seafront (€10); while there will also be a free Galway Hooker rigging demonstration.

For the more adventurous, there are supervised powerboard ‘taster spins’ (€10) while for ‘the foodies’ the Galway Bay Seafoods fish’n’chips, the Hooker beer and seafood sampling, as well as the family cooking demonstrations – all priced at €10 each – look set to be big attractions.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of this story, see the October 7 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Mayor told to stay away from homecoming over funding snub

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From the Galway City Tribune – The Mayor of Galway was asked to stay away from homecoming celebrations for extreme adventurer Damian Browne, the Galway City Tribune understands.

Mayor Clodagh Higgins was told that she was not to attend the event at the Docks on Tuesday as there had been disappointment in the ‘Project Empower’ camp that funding had not been made available from Galway City Council.

The Galway City Tribune has learned that Project Empower, which is led by Voluntary Manager MacDara Hosty, applied for €30,000 in funding from the local authority’s Marketing Fund in September 2021, but was deemed ineligible.

A spokesperson for Galway City Council confirmed this week that Project Empower did not meet the criteria set down by the fund which seeks to support the holding of major events and festivals in the city.

In documents seen by this newspaper, Project Empower proposed that Galway City Council be the title partner at a cost of €30,000 plus VAT.

The Tribune understands that the Council’s refusal to provide this funding was at the root of the Mayor’s snub on Tuesday, which drew attention online as members of the public questioned her absence.

When contacted, the Mayor refused to be drawn on questions relating to the Marketing Fund, but said it was her intention to offer a Civic Reception to Damian Browne at the nearest opportunity.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of this story and extensive coverage of Damian Browne’s homecoming, see the October 7 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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