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CITY TRIBUNE

West’s in-form duo plotting a major assault on Ballybrit

John McIntyre

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Owner Tom Quinn and trainer Steve Mahon, and his daughter Leah, with Stormy and Usa, both of whom will be running at the Galway festival.

THEY are one of racing’s hottest owner/trainer properties this summer and their successful if unlikely alliance will be launching a strong assault on the Galway summer festival at Ballybrit next week.

The partnership between trainer Steve Mahon and Tom Quinn will be seven-years strong in September, and from relative humble beginnings, the Kilcolgan-based operation has really established itself as force on the Irish racing scene.

The pair would probably never have linked up only for a ‘tip off’ from Galway native Sean Monaghan, who used to work alongside Mahon at Jim Dreaper’s yard in Greenogue, Co Meath.

Monaghan informed his colleague that he knew of a Galway owner who was looking for a trainer. That individual was Tom Quinn who was keen to develop a training base on his land in Kilcolgan and had already seen his colours carried to a fair degree of success.

It’s almost 20 years ago since Quinn first dipped his toes into racing ownership. Having been heavily involved in the GAA as a player and administrator – he lined out for Ballinderreen in their county final defeat by Ardrahan in 1978 and also served as club chairman – he was looking for a new sporting pursuit.

Having always been interested in racing, he took the plunge as an owner and one of his first horses, the Pat Hughes trained Akasian, proved a great money-spinner; winning on a multitude of occasions, including at Galway. Quinn part-owned the horse, along with Oranmore’s Pat Furey and Gerald Love from Fermanagh. Akasian is now 23 and living out his retirement in Kilcolgan.

Kieran Purcell, the former Kilkenny hurler, also trained for Quinn, who won an All-Ireland U-21 medal with Galway in 1972, but he was beginning to find the long journeys of seeing his horses work tiresome. Quinn was also anxious to establish a strong training operation in the province.

“Once you go west of the Shannon, some racing people have little respect for you. We wanted to change that and, touch wood, things have been working out. The horses are running well and Steve is doing a great job here.”

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

CITY TRIBUNE

Galway City publican in heroic River Corrib rescue

Francis Farragher

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – A city publican who last week helped save the life of a woman who had entered the waters of the Corrib off Wolfe Tone Bridge has made an appeal for young people to ‘look out for each other’.

Fergus McGinn, proprietor of McGinn’s Hop House in Woodquay, had been walking close to Jury’s Inn when he saw the young woman enter the river.

He then rushed to the riverbank on the Long Walk side of the bridge, jumped into the water, spoke to the woman and stayed with her until the emergency services arrived.

The incident occurred at about 3.45pm on Friday last, and a short time later the emergency services were on the scene to safely rescue the woman.

“She was lucky in that the river level was very low and she didn’t injure herself on the rocks and stones just under the water.”

He also appealed to the public to support in whatever they could the work being done by groups like the Claddagh Watch volunteers.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Pubs face court – for serving booze on their doorsteps!

Dara Bradley

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – Gardaí have warned city publicans that alcohol cannot be served outside their own premises – even in newly-created on-street spaces designated by Galway City Council as suitable for outdoor dining.

Councillor Mike Crowe (FF) said three Gardaí visited a number of city centre pubs on Thursday afternoon informing them that drinking outdoors was not allowed under licensing laws.

“They warned publicans and restaurants that the area outside their premises is not covered by the licence, and therefore under national legislation, they are breaking the law, because they are not entitled to sell alcohol in non-licensed areas.

“The operators were told that this was an official warning, and they will be back again in a few days and if it persisted, they [Gardaí] would have no option but to issue a charge and forward files to the Director of Public Prosecution. You could not make this up.

“All of the big operators were visited, and received an official warning, and they will be charged if they persist. According to the guards, they’re getting instructions from [Garda headquarters in] Phoenix Park,” he said.

The matter will be raised at a meeting of the Galway City Joint Policing Committee on Monday.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Call for 50% affordable homes in new Galway City Council estates

Stephen Corrigan

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – The next Galway City Development Plan should include a greater provision for affordable housing than that recommended by Government, a meeting of the City Council has heard.

Cllr Declan McDonnell (Ind) told the meeting that while it was the Government’s intention to introduce a stipulation that new estates should have 10% affordable housing, Galway should go further – building anything up to 50% affordable in developments that are led by the local authority.

The Affordable Housing Bill, which is currently working its way through the Oireachtas, proposes that all developments should have 10% affordable and 10% social housing as a condition of their approval.

Affordable housing schemes help lower-income households buy their own houses or apartments in new developments at significantly less than their open market value, while social housing is provided by local authorities and housing agencies to those who cannot afford their own accommodation.

The Council meeting, part of the pre-draft stage of forming the Development Plan to run from 2023 to 2029, was to examine the overarching strategies that will inform the draft plan to come before councillors by the end of the year and Cllr McDonnell said a more ambitious target for affordable housing was absolutely necessary.

“It must be included that at least 50% of housing must be affordable [in social housing developments],” he said.

This sentiment was echoed by Cllr Eddie Hoare (FG) who questioned if the City Council was ‘tied down’ by national guidelines, or if it could increase the minimum percentage of affordable housing required locally.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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