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Irish Water welcomes official opening of new Kenmare Water Treatment

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Irish Water and Kerry County Council today marked the official opening of the Kenmare Water Treatment Plant, following a €5m upgrade to improve treatment facilities and ensure a clean, secure water supply for the local community.

Over 2,000 people in Kenmare and the surrounding areas will benefit from a safer and more reliable water supply as a result of this investment.

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Eoghan Murphy performed the official opening at the plant in the company of Cllr Norma Foley, Cathaoirleach of Kerry County Council; Moira Murrell, Chief Executive of Kerry County Council, Irish Water representatives and special guests.

This completed project provides comprehensive treatment facilities, including a cryptosporidium barrier which will provide safe drinking water to the residents of Kenmare.  This ensures that the necessary infrastructure is in place so that Kenmare’s water supply is in compliance with the requirements set out in the European Union Drinking Water Directive.  The project also provides 24 hours reservoir storage capacity for Kenmare which enhances the security of supply.

Due to deficiencies in the treatment process at the old plant, Kenmare has been included on the EPA’s Remedial Action List (RAL). It is expected that the completion of this project will facilitate the removal of the supply from the RAL.

Speaking at the official opening, Minister Eoghan Murphy, said: “I am pleased to be here in Kenmare today for the official opening of this vital piece of water infrastructure. Kenmare is rightly regarded as one of Ireland’s top tourism destinations and providing a secure supply of clean, safe drinking water for local residents and visitors to the area is essential to the quality of life and development potential of the area. This investment in water infrastructure brings very significant benefits to this community now and into the future.”

Cathaoirleach of Kerry County Council, Cllr Norma Foley said: “I welcome this investment by Irish Water in Kenmare which will ensure that town has a safe, secure and reliable water supply. The completion of this project should facilitate the removal of the Kenmare supply from the EPA’s Remedial Action List and give assurance to local people and visitors alike that the drinking water here is of the highest quality.”

Gerry O’Donnell, Infrastructure Programme Manager with Irish Water, commented: “We are delighted to officially open the new water treatment plant here in Kenmare. This upgrade of the plant was necessary to address the water treatment issues and ensure a secure and sustainable supply of quality drinking water for the local community.

“This project represents an investment of €5m by Irish Water in the Kenmare area. This is part of Irish Water’s commitment to improving water quality throughout the country that has seen the number of supplies on the EPA’s Remedial Action List reduced from 99 in 2016 to 77 at the end of 2017. This is one of a number of very significant projects in that have been completed or are near completion in Kerry, including new €30m Lough Guitane Water Treatment Plant which will provide a safer, more reliable water supply for more than 60,000 people in the Killarney area.”

Irish Water spent over €526 million on water services in 2017. Capital investment in the region of €700 million per year is needed for a sustained period of several decades to address the poor condition of Ireland’s water infrastructure. Works have been prioritised to address the most critical issues in line with commitments outlined in Irish Water’s Business Plan up to 2021. Delivery of the business plan will involve a €5.5bn investment in capital spending on drinking water and wastewater quality and capacity and new infrastructure up to 2021 while achieving efficiencies of €1.6bn.

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Killarney co-drivers to the fore at this weekend

Two Killarney-based co-drivers will contest this weekend’s Trackrod Rally Yorkshire, the fourth rounds of the British Rally Championship. The two-day event gets underway tonight (Friday) with one stage set to be run under the cover of darkness. On the startline will be Muckross man Noel O’Sullivan and Aghadoe’s Mikie Galvin. O’Sullivan, co-driver to Welshman Osian […]

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Two Killarney-based co-drivers will contest this weekend’s Trackrod Rally Yorkshire, the fourth rounds of the British Rally Championship.

The two-day event gets underway tonight (Friday) with one stage set to be run under the cover of darkness.
On the startline will be Muckross man Noel O’Sullivan and Aghadoe’s Mikie Galvin.

O’Sullivan, co-driver to Welshman Osian Pryce, is the current leader of the series while Galvin, who reads pacenotes for fellow Killarney and District Motor Club member, West Cork’s Keith Cronin, is eighth after missing the opening round.

“The element of darkness certainly brings an additional challenge to all the crews, especially since most of us will not have done any night stages for some time, the most recent I did was in 2017 on the Ulster Rally,” Cronin noted.

The route layout reads like an extract from the itinerary of the World Championship counting RAC Rally of the 1980s, featuring familiar locations such as Dalby, Gale Rigg and Langdale, and it will be the Dalby Forest test that opens the competition shortly after 8pm tonight.

Meanwhile, Irish rallying returned last Sunday after the pandemic-enforced lay-off with the ‘Munster Car Club’s Cork 20’.

London-based Listry co-driver Shane Buckley was the best of the local entrants, guiding Daniel Cronin, Keith’s brother, to fifth overall.

Ger Conway and his driver Stephen Wright were just two places and 8.9 seconds behind in another Ford Fiesta RC2. It was Conway’s first taste of a RC2 car since he and Rob Duggan finished second overall on the 2018 Donegal International Rally.

“There is a taste of more after this,” said Ger after a trouble-free day.
Damien Fleming came close to making it four local co-drivers in the top 10. He and his driver Stephen McCann were 11th, just 16.6 off the leader board. They said it took a while to get used to the bumpy Irish tar after a recent trip to the Tour of Flanders in Belgium.

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Education Minister officially opens The Mon’s new classrooms

A town primary school – which has a deep connection to Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty – has a whole new look which was officially opened today (Friday) by the Minister for Education. Norma Foley TD officially opened the newly constructed wing to the Presentation Monastery Primary School on New Road which will house two special needs classrooms, a multi-sensory room […]

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A town primary school – which has a deep connection to Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty – has a whole new look which was officially opened today (Friday) by the Minister for Education.

Norma Foley TD officially opened the newly constructed wing to the Presentation Monastery Primary School on New Road which will house two special needs classrooms, a multi-sensory room and a general-purpose hall.

The project, which was funded by Department of Education along with money raised by the school as part of their ‘THE MON-ster Fundraiser’, was just one of three officially opened new additions to the school along with a special dedication of the school’s hall in honour of Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty, a past pupil of the school from 1909-1914.

Also, The Most Rev. Ray Browne, Bishop of Kerry, officially opened a three-classroom extension at the school’s present site which was opened in 1958 having moved from its College Street location which was opened in 1838 by the Presentation Brothers.

Former Supreme Court Judge Hugh O’Flaherty and Mrs Pearl Dineen the nephew and niece of Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty officiated over the dedicating of the school’s new hall to past pupil, Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty, in recognition of his heroic deeds during WWII.

O’Flaherty, who also taught at the school later, became better known for the role he played in World War II while at the Vatican leading over 6,500 prisoners of war, partisans and Jews to freedom to earn him the title of the ‘Vatican Pimpernel’, leading to the 1983 film ‘The Scarlet and the Black’ with Gregory Peck portraying the role of O’Flaherty.

OUTDOOR CLASSROOM

A special outdoor classroom ‘Dotts Garden’, dedicated to the memory of Dorothy (Dott) Hennggler the 2011 Washington DC Rose who died at the family home in Baltimore from a brain tumour, was officially opened by Anne O’Shea (aunt of the late Dorothy), and Àine McMahon (cousin of the late Dorothy and BOM member). The outdoor classroom was beautifully decorated over the summer by artist Katríona Lynch.

Due to COVID restrictions, the main event took place outdoors with staff joined by a small group of pupils selected from each of the classes representing the student body along with members of the school’s Board of Management.

“Your achievements have been remarkable over the last number of months,” Minister of Education, Norma Foley, said today at the official opening.

“It is my wish going forward that the next year in education will be less complicated, less trying and less difficult one. I think school staff are deserving of that. We can put the COVID atmosphere behind us and we are moving positively along. We hope that in a few months we will talk about living in a post-COVID time. The story of Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty speaks of the calibre of students produced here, but it also speaks of the courage and bravery and vision that Kerry people can have in the most difficult and trying of times.”

School principal Colm Ó Suilleabháin, who is shortly moving on to St Oliver’s NS in Ballycasheen, was delighted to be in attendance to see the building come to fruition.

“It’s a fantastic culmination of hard work by the staff and the Board of Management, and we are delighted to see the school is fully equipped and resourced for the next generation of pupils from Killarney and beyond,” he said.

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