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World Masters Fly Fishing to be staged on four lakes



International Fly Fishing teams from all over the world will be competing in Galway for the World Masters Trout Fly Fishing Championship next week.

From June 13-19, nearly fifty people from nine countries around the world will compete on the renowned lakes of Lough Corrib, Lough Inagh, Lough Fee and Lough Muck for the Fips-Mouche World Masters Fly Fishing Championship.

Those countries include France, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Scotland, Sweden, South Africa and the United States.

The championship will showcase Ireland’s best trout fishing venues and some of the most scenic areas in the west of the country.

Eugene Nolan, the Connacht Angling Council Competition Officer, said some of the anglers have already been in Galway for over a week, but most arrived earlier this week.

“From start to finish we expect this will bring in €200,000 to €250,000, but the long term benefits will be much greater,” he said.

Mr Nolan said many people will be spending money on fishing licenses, hotels, at pubs and restaurants, but the place that will benefit the most is the Western Connemara region.

The Connacht Angling Council is supported by about 150 local anglers and their clubs who will assist the competitors by supplying boats and boatmen.

This is the second Fips-Mouche World Masters Fly Fishing Championship. The first championship of this kind took place in Chile in 2014.

Mr Nolan said they simply applied for the event to take place in Galway, and they were given the bid.

Teams will stay in the Connacht Hotel during the third week of June.

An opening parade and ceremony will take place on June 13 at 6pm. The parade will start at Eyre Square then walk down Shop Street, High Street and Quay Street and finish at the Spanish Arch where all teams will be introduced.

St. Patrick’s Brass Band and local Irish dancers will lead the parade.

On June 18 medals will be presented to all championship winners at the Connacht Hotel during an awards dinner.

Local film crews and drones will ensure worldwide coverage.

Since June 1, Lough Inagh has closed to all fishing. Lough Corrib will close from Glann Shore Inchagoill Island and across just north of Salt House Bay. All areas south of that will remain open.

Connacht Tribune

Confusion reigns – but publicans continue serving pints outdoors



Galway City publicans continued this week to serve alcohol in newly created on-street outdoor dining sections – despite warnings from Gardaí that it was against licensing laws.

The local branch of the Vintners Federation of Ireland (VFI) said it is hoping Government will, if necessary, introduce legislation that facilitates pubs serving alcohol in public spaces reclaimed for outdoor hospitality.

On Friday last, our sister newspaper, Galway City Tribune revealed that Gardaí had visited a number of city pubs warning they were not legally permitted to serve alcohol outdoors in temporary on-street seating areas created by Galway City Council.

Publicans were told that if they continued to flout the rules, files would be sent to the DPP.

When the crux subsequently hit the national headlines, Justice Minister Heather Humphreys urged Gardaí to ‘use their discretion’.

“The overwhelming majority of licensed premises are operating safely, and we in Government are determined to continue to support them. If local issues arise, I would urge local authorities, Gardaí and businesses to engage.

“However, I will also examine whether further measures are required from Government. Licensing law is a complex area but I have spoken to the Attorney General this morning and we will take further action if necessary,” Minister Humphreys said.

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Connacht Tribune

Apple plans second bite at Athenry data centre



An artist's impression of the proposed Apple Data Centre.

Apple intends to have another bite at plans to build a data centre in Athenry.  Apple Operations Europe has applied to Galway County Council for more time to construct a controversial data centre on a greenfield site at Derrydonnell.

The company said it will identify “interested parties to develop the project” between now and 2026 to meet global growth in demand for data storage facilities.

It will spark hope in the County Galway town of a revival of the €850 million project that was dogged for years by planning delays and court appeals and was subsequently shelved. It may also attract fresh objections.

The world’s largest technology company was granted planning permission to build a €850 million data centre near Athenry in 2015.

An appeal to An Bórd Pleanála by a handful of local residents was not successful, and the planning appeals board confirmed the local authority’s decision in 2016.

But the company ultimately aborted its plans for County Galway in 2018 after three objectors sought a review of the decision through the courts.

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Connacht Tribune

Mum’s dream holiday turns to nightmare after cancer diagnosis



Julia McAndrew, in hospital in Mexico.

A mother who went to Mexico on a dream holiday to spend Christmas with family is too weak to return home after being diagnosed with advanced cancer.

From the minute Julia McAndrew landed in the South American country, her health took a major downward spiral.

Her son and daughter were shocked when she asked for a wheelchair to make it through the airport.

She and daughter Eliska had flown out to see her son Patrick, who had relocated to Mexico to run an online learning business.

They initially thought she had fallen ill due to the rigours of a 22-hour, multi-stop flight.

But when her stomach problems did not improve and she began to lose a lot of weight and suffered from very low energy, they sought medical help.

This had to be done privately and without the financial help of an insurance company, Patrick reveals.

She was initially diagnosed with anaemia and kidney failure and underwent various treatments, including blood transfusions that appeared to be working.

But three weeks ago, medics discovered that what she had was Stage 4 breast cancer. Julia had cancer a decade ago but was given the all-clear after receiving treatment and a major change in lifestyle.

“It’s returned with a vengeance this time around. It’s spread to her pelvis, ribs and lungs,” reflects Patrick.

The cost of the treatment is $40,000 (€33,000) a month. Her family are hoping to build up her strength enough to endure the long flight home to Oranmore.

They have launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise €280,000 to pay for her treatment and in less than a week a phenomenal €36,000 has been donated.

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