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Fáilte Ireland offers €3m lifeline to hotels affected by COVID-19

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By Sean Moriarty

Fáilte Ireland will cut some of its annual charges to members to help offset some of the financial burdens caused by COVID-19 restrictions.
The hotel and hospitality industry was one of the first to take a hit when Taoiseach Leo Varadkar closed all pubs on March 15.

Hotels and bars in Killarney were forced to close their doors and lay-off thousands of staff.

Tourism in Kerry directly employs almost 16,000 people and it contributes over €600 million to the local economy. The Kerry IHF branch has over one hundred hotels and guesthouses as members.

Each job in the sector is responsible for half of another job in associated trades like the food supply chain and taxis.

A conservative estimate suggests that over 25,000 people in Kerry are affected by the tourism industry shutdown alone and this figure does not include third-party trades like garages who would supply repairs and fuel to the car hire industry.

Fáilte Ireland has triggered a number of initiatives that will deliver almost €3 million back to Irish tourism businesses.
These include refunds of accommodation registration charges and trade show participation fees, as well as the abolition of a range of other promotional fees and charges for the remainder of 2020.

The tourism body is working closely with hotels to ensure staff are getting the correct welfare payments and that employers are aware of a range of Revenue schemes put in place to help them survive the current crisis and be ready for reopening.

Fáilte Ireland is also working on a host of health and well-being projects and is launching educational and training material for hotel management and staff.

“I appreciate that as businesses are closed, there will be very little, if any work for many employees. With this in mind, we will be developing and publishing a range of employee training and engagement resources to help employers and employees make positive use of time during this difficult period,” Paul Kelly, CEO of Fáilte Ireland, said.

“It is also very important that we look after our physical and mental well-being at this time. You will also find some new guidelines in the HR Risk section of our online support hub on how to engage with your employees during this time to support their well-being. We are here to help so if there is an area of support you think the tourism industry urgently needs, please don't hesitate to contact the Business Supports team.”

Fáilte Ireland’s Business Supports team can be contacted by email on business.supports@failteireland.ie or call our support desk on Lo Call 1800-242 473, Monday – Friday 9am–5pm.

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Photo of “hidden gem” wins Camera Club’s latest competition

A photograph of one of Killarney’s hidden beauty spots was deemed the winner of Killarney Camera Club’s most recent competition. Th standard was high throughout all categories but in the […]

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A photograph of one of Killarney’s hidden beauty spots was deemed the winner of Killarney Camera Club’s most recent competition.

Th standard was high throughout all categories but in the Novice category, Iryna Halaieva’s photograph of O’Sullivan’s Cascade was deemed the winner.

“A waterfall is my favourite waterbody and long exposure is my favourite photographic technique,” she said. “I do my best to have as many waterfalls as possible in my photo collection. I heard a lot about O’Sullivan’s Cascade and wanted to visit that hidden gem of Kerry. So, shortly before our club competition I went with a friend to Tomies Wood to photograph it. It was a dream come true for me.”

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Corcoran’s Furniture walk raises €12k for autism charity

Corcoran’s Furniture and Carpets charity walk through the Gap of Dunloe on Saturday raised almost €12,000 for Autism Assistance Dogs Ireland There were 37 participants in the event, which included […]

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Corcoran’s Furniture and Carpets charity walk through the Gap of Dunloe on Saturday raised almost €12,000 for Autism Assistance Dogs Ireland

There were 37 participants in the event, which included AADI families, dogs, and representatives, as well as fundraisers, supporters, and members of the Corcoran’s team. The stars of the day were the three life-changing super-hero dogs, Buzz, Baron and Hank.

Former Kerry Footballer, James O’ Donoghue, was the ambassador for the event
Those taking part left Ross Castle and were treated to a phenomenal boat ride in the expert hands of Diarmuid ‘Dux’ O’Donoghue of Gap of Dunloe Traditional Boat Tours. The O’Donoghue family entertained the entire group with a range of fascinating stories outlining the history of the lakes of Killarney and Killarney National Park.

The group set out from Lord Brandon’s Cottage and walked the 11K through the iconic Gap of Dunloe, with two AADI families and their dogs taking part in the full walk. This was followed by a well-deserved meal and some rest and relaxation at Kate Kearney’s Cottage. Flemings Taxi’s Killarney brought the group back to Ross Castle, Killarney upon completion of the event.

“On behalf of everybody at Corcoran’s Furniture, we would like to thank everybody who participated in our Gap of Dunloe charity event on behalf of AADI,” said Shane O’ Callaghan, Financial Controller atCorcoran’s.

“Collectively we have raised almost €12,000 for this incredible charity and monies are still coming in. We are extremely grateful to all who supported our walk, and also to James O’ Donoghue, Christina Tagney, the Gap of Dunloe Traditional Boat Tours, the fantastic support of Noel Lucey and Donal McCarthy from the Order Of Malta, Killarney branch, and to Killarney National Park, Kate Kearney’s Cottage and Fleming’s Taxi’s. All funds raised will go toward the expert training and maintenance of the upcoming AADI dogs who will make a dramatic difference to so many children with Autism and their families.”

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