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‘Losing weight has been the battle of my life’

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Siobhan Lewis.

CONGRATULATIONS to Killarney lady Siubhan Lewis who has been named Woman of the Year 2016 District Finalist with Slimming World.

Siubhan, of Muckross, said: “After I had my first child in 1977 I didn’t put on any significant weight. That might have had to do with climbing down a cliff face during a camping holiday some weeks before the birth.

“In those early years my husband and I led a very active life – walking and climbing on the Kerry hills, in woodlands, by lake and along the coast; holidays cycling around the Beara Peninsula; having a very distressed Brendan (our first) on the back of the bike in torrential rain on the way home from Sneem; cycling every day during our lunch break.”

Three and four years later there were two further arrivals. “My long story of getting heavier appeared to start. While this was very gradual by the time the children had reached First Communion age it was not a pleasant experience looking for something nice to wear,” said Siobhan.

“Since the home birth of number five in 1987 it has been an uphill battle. My increasing weight affected everything I did – the difficulty and expense of buying clothes.”

Eating had become an addiction and it affected Siubhan’s feeling of self-worth, she added. “A particularly low point when I was told in the post office ‘Congratulations, you’re expecting another baby” – which I was not!” said Siubhan.

For most of 30 years the Muckross resident has been joining slimming groups of various kinds. “I would lose a stone. But then put it back on again – and more,” she said.

Staying active became more difficult. “Mountains were a memory. Cycling was a dream of the past,” said Siubhan.

Then in 2012 Siubhan suffered health problems and was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. “The fear was terrible, there were some awful experiences but the treatment and care were superb and after a year and a half I came through with flying colours,” she said. “This was a second chance at life. Clearly I was now making life and death decisions.

In June 2015 her daughter Ide suggested she and Siubhan should try Slimming World. “Although she had no significant weight problem she suggested otherwise,” said Siobhan. “She and I would do this together. Then that historic day. Tuesday, July 7, 2015, Ide collected me and we went along to our first Slimming World session in The Brehon.”

Over this past year Siubhan felt she had two “guardian angels”. “Our leader Cheryl Cavanagh inspired with her own story, was endlessly helpful, her wit made everything enjoyable. Ide supported, cajoled, threatened. Anybody who says there are no angels doesn’t know what they are talking about,” said Siubhan.

There were “blips”, added Siubhan, including putting on seven and a half pounds over Christmas and eight and a half pounds over holidays. But she battled on with the encouragement of her dynamic duo of helpers. Now, at 35kg lighter, Siubhan’s life has been transformed.

“These past months I have started to walk every evening with neighbours Colm and Kathleen as well as our dog and their two dogs,” she said.

“Walking to the foot of the mountain there is no puffing and panting. Mountains are a real possibility. Maybe I’ll even cycle the Ring of Kerry.

“I’m being told at every turn, ‘you look great’ or ‘you look ten years younger’….’your husband better watch out!’ – though he doesn’t believe that! Life couldn’t be better. Thank you Slimming World … and those two guardian angels … Ide and Cheryl.”

Slimming World meetings take place in The Brehon Hotel, Killarney on Tuesdays at 9.30am, 11.30am, 5.30pm and 7.30pm and in the Meadowlands Hotel in Tralee on Wednesdays at 9.30am, 11.30am, 3.30pm, 5.30pm and 7.30pm.

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Green light for teen accommodation

By Michelle Crean  Plans for sheltered accommodation to house homeless teenagers in foster care have been given the go ahead. An Bord Pleanala has approved a three-storey building in Flemings Lane just off High Street, which will have eight bedrooms, two one bedroom apartments and one two bedroom apartment. The teens living within the premises […]

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By Michelle Crean
 

Plans for sheltered accommodation to house homeless teenagers in foster care have been given the go ahead.

An Bord Pleanala has approved a three-storey building in Flemings Lane just off High Street, which will have eight bedrooms, two one bedroom apartments and one two bedroom apartment.

The teens living within the premises will be supervised by applicant Eileen O’Brien who will live on the ground floor of the premises.

The two one-bed apartments on the second floor would either be rented out or used for independent living for the teenagers as they reach adulthood.

The two-bed apartment will be on the third floor. There are also plans for balconies at second and third floor levels.

The proposed apartment building is contemporary in design with a mix of stone and render finish on the lower floors and synthetic burned timber finish on the upper floors. The second floor is recessed at the front and the third floor is recessed at the front and the rear with a decorative feature on the front elevation comprising dark grey timber steel poles. The building will also have a flat roof.

Planning permission was granted subject to 14 conditions including a two-metre high boundary wall to be constructed on south, south-western boundaries of the site and there’s to be no overnight commercial guest accommodation.

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Fans return to Fitzgerald Stadium after eight months

By Sean Moriarty Officials from Fitzgerald Stadium remain hopeful that crowd capacity at the venue can be increased to 500 spectators in time for the Munster final on July 25 – subject to both national health guidelines and Kerry qualifying for the game. Last Saturday evening’s National League semi-final between Kerry and Tyrone was the […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Officials from Fitzgerald Stadium remain hopeful that crowd capacity at the venue can be increased to 500 spectators in time for the Munster final on July 25 – subject to both national health guidelines and Kerry qualifying for the game.

Last Saturday evening’s National League semi-final between Kerry and Tyrone was the first game at the stadium since the 2020 Kerry Petroleum Intermediate Club Football Championship Quarter-Final when Glenbeigh-Glencar played Beaufort on October 4 last year.

Due to current restrictions only 200 fans were allowed attend Saturday’s big match. That will remain in place for Kerry’s opening Munster Championship tie with Clare on June 26.

“It had been more than eight months since Fitzgerald Stadium welcomed back fans to the venue,” stadium PRO Tatyana McGough told the Killarney Advertiser. “Everything went exceptionally well.”

She is hopeful that more restrictions will be eased on July 5, paving the way for an increase in capacity to 500 fans in time for the July 25 Munster Final.

“It is likely that from July 5 up to 500 spectators may be permitted to attend games. We hope this number will increase for the Munster Final. If it is a Cork versus Kerry Munster Final the game will be fixed for Sunday July 25 at 4pm in the Fitzgerald Stadium. The stadium’s staff are very confident in being able to host any number of fans that may be allowed.”

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Garda appeal to park legally at beaches and public amenities

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An Garda Siochana is appealing to the public to park legally in designated car parks and spaces when visiting beaches, beauty spots and other public amenities. 

The good weather has seen an increase in dangerous illegal parking at these locations across the country in recent weeks. An Garda Siochana wants people to enjoy the summer but do so safely.

Parking illegally can lead to unnecessary risk and dangers such as pedestrians being forced to walk along dangerous roads. It can also prevent emergency services from gaining access to these amenities a seaside locations which could lead to the loss of life. 

“We encourage the public to plan their journeys and think safety first when parking your vehicle,” the Gardai said in a statement. 

“The outcome of parking illegally could be far more serious than a FCPN or vehicle towing and puts others and your own life at risk. 

An Garda Siochana reminds and encourages the public to social distance and follow public health guidelines when attending these locations this Summer.

An Garda Siochana is also supporting National Water Safety Awareness Week (June 14th – 20th). Information on this campaign and general water safety can be found on Water Safety Irelands Website – www.watersafety.ie/national-water-safety-awareness-week/

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