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Event to recognise volunteers’ dedication throughout pandemic

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A special event to thank volunteers for their dedication and work throughout the pandemic will be held virtually this Thursday.

Taking place at 7pm, Cathaoirleach of Kerry County Council, Cllr Patrick Connor Scarteen, will host the event for the Community Response Forum who provided non-emergency supports, and advice and guidance to communities around the county.

The online event, which will be available on the Kerry County Council homepage, www.kerrycoco.ie, Council Facebook page and Kerry County Council YouTube Channel, aims to recognise the efforts of everybody involved in the Community Forum since it began in March 2020.

The Kerry Community Response Forum is a multi-agency group of statutory and voluntary organisations which has been coordinating the community response to the COVID-19 pandemic since March 2020. It includes representatives of Kerry County Council, the HSE, An Garda Síochána, local development companies, Kerry Volunteer Centre, Kerry GAA, Local Link Kerry, Kerry Public Participation Network, Kerry Age Friendly Network, Citizens Information, St Vincent de Paul, Alone, Irish Red Cross, Kerry Civil Defence and other local voluntary groups.

“The Kerry Community Response Forum was one of the first to be established in the country, in recognition of the need to support vulnerable individuals and households in the county,” Cllr Patrick Connor Scarteen said.

“It provided a single point of contact for vulnerable people and those in need of assistance, and through the Community Response Forum, they were put in touch with local community groups and organisations to help them out.

“We are now seeing restrictions ease and society reopen, and hopefully matters will continue to improve over the coming months. This is why we feel it is the right time to recognise the huge level of effort by the organisers, the groups and those staffing the phones.”

The virtual appreciation night will outline the work of the various groups, with the Municipal District Cathaoirligh and other guests highlighting what went on behind the scenes to ensure that every call was answered and that nobody was left behind.

“The work that our voluntary and community groups do around the county is amazing, and the Forum was a way to ensure that there was a formal structure behind it,” Director of Community Development with Kerry County Council, Michael Scannell, explained. “This ensured the governance and support for all groups was in place.

“For years we have been highlighting the work of the various groups around the county and when the pandemic came, it was clear that they would continue doing the positive work within their communities. Our role was to provide support and back-up and now we want to thank them for their efforts."

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Headford man’s 1948 Jaguar the star of car run

A staggering 157 classic and vintage cars and motorcycles took part in the 12th annual Car and Honda 50 Run, organised by Ballymac Vintage Club on Sunday. The O’Riada’s Bar […]

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A staggering 157 classic and vintage cars and motorcycles took part in the 12th annual Car and Honda 50 Run, organised by Ballymac Vintage Club on Sunday.

The O’Riada’s Bar and Restaurant-based event raised money for the nearby Glanageenty Walkways and followed a new for 2022 route via Ballymac, Raemore, Knocknagoshel, Brosna, and Mount Eagle before the finish line in the Mart Yard in Castleisland.

Gerard Healy from Knockysheehan, Headford, Killarney had the oldest cars on the run.

He has owned his 1948 Jaguar Mark 4 saloon for the last seven years.

“This car was manufactured in Coventry after World War Two,” he said. “And it was then shipped to Ireland in kit form to avoid high import duty on complete cars. It was reassembled in Dublin and painted emerald green. This is a Sligo car, the first owner was a Miss Teresa Ferry, it was very unusual for a lady to own a car in those days.”

The car was then sold to a vicar and then a soldier before, somehow, ending up in The Netherlands. There it underwent a full restoration in 1999.

Gerard bought the car from a restorer called Roberto Verboon.

“I was proud to bring the car back to Ireland,” he added.

Thanks to generous support from local businesses and sponsors including O’Riada’s and BG Motors over €500 worth of spot prizes were handed out on the day.

Listry’s Tony and Kay Darmody were prize winners after judges were impressed with their Hillman Minx Convertible.

George Carey from Tralee won the motorcycle award with his finely turned out 1986 Honda 90.

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White Tailed Sea Eagles released into Killarney National Park

By Sean Moriarty Four White-tailed Eagle chicks have been released into the wild in Killarney National Park. The National Park is one of three locations in Munster as well as Lough […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Four White-tailed Eagle chicks have been released into the wild in Killarney National Park.

The National Park is one of three locations in Munster as well as Lough Derg and the lower Shannon Estuary where a total of 16 of the once extinct in Ireland birds have been released in recent days.

On Friday last, An Taoiseach, Micheál Martin was in Tarbert where a number of eagles were released into the wild as part of a project to re-establish a population of this iconic species in Ireland.

This was followed by a further release today (Tuesday) in Killarney National Park by the Minister of State for Heritage, Malcolm Noonan, TD, accompanied by the Norwegian Ambassador, Mari Skåre.

Also in attendance were a group of visiting Norwegians who were responsible for the collection of the eagle nestlings in Norway earlier this year.

These white-tailed Eagle chicks arrived in Kerry Airport last month as part of a long-term wildlife reintroduction project.

The four eagle chicks brought to Killarney National Park have been held in special aviaries in a remote part of the Park where they have been carefully looked after by National Parks and Wildlife Service staff.

“It has been wonderful to watch the release of the magnificent White Tail Eagles collected in Norway. The friendship between the people of Norway and the people of Ireland runs deep. The eagles we see fly free and strong in their natural habitat here today are spreading their wings as a result of the voluntary work of so many,” said Ambassador Skåre.

“Biodiversity is essential for all life on Earth. Yet we are seeing an extremely rapid loss of species world-wide. Through joint efforts we can halt this decline.”

As in previous years, the young eagles were collected under licence in Norway by the Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA) and co-workers. All the birds were fitted with satellite tags in Ireland to enable their progress to be followed and their integration into the existing Irish breeding population monitored.

One of the first pairs of White-tailed Eagles to breed in Ireland was in Killarney National Park in 2013 and the pair have remained in the Park since, once again fledging a chick this year. Their nest is in a tree on an inaccessible cliff, but visitors may be lucky and catch a glimpse of the eagles soaring over the mountains or catching fish in one of the Park’s many lakes.

As they mature, these chicks will join and strengthen the small Irish breeding population that has become established since the reintroduction programme began in 2007. So far, 47 young eagles from Norway have been released over the last two years.

FLYING HIGH: One of the White-tailed Eagle chicks released into the wild in Killarney National Park on Tuesday.
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