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Mayor welcomes windfall for Killarney Cultural Centre

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Cllr Brendan Cronin.

T

THE cathaoirleach of Killarney Councillor Brendan Cronin has welcomed a grant allocation of over €120,000 for Killarney Cultural Centre.

This is part of a rollout of capital funding of more than €9m for arts and cultural centres across Ireland announced by the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, Heather Humphreys today.

Minister Humphreys made the announcement as part of the Creative Ireland programme, with funding provided under her Department’s Arts and Culture Capital Scheme 2016-2018.

Killarney Cultural Centre, under the auspices of Kerry County Council, has received €120,320.

A total of 56 cultural organisations will benefit from this capital investment, including theatres, heritage centres, galleries, archives, integrated arts centres, artist studios and creative and performance spaces.

Seven flagship projects will receive substantial funding allocations:
• Solstice Meath Arts Centre - €300,000
• The Irish Arial Creation Centre (home of Fidget Feet) - €350,000
• The Hunt Museum, Limerick - €400,000
• The Hawk’s Well Theatre in Sligo - €550,000
• Cavan Town Hall Theatre - €750,000
• The Riverbank Arts Centre, Kildare - €1,000,000
• Wexford Arts Centre - €1,000,000

A further 49 projects will receive funding ranging from €20,000 to €276,000.

Speaking today Minister Humphreys said:
“This €9 million announcement is the most significant investment in regional arts and cultural centres in a decade. The Creative Ireland Programme places a focus on investing in our cultural infrastructure, because high quality infrastructure is critical for a vibrant arts and culture sector, which in turn underpins social cohesion and supports sustainable economic growth.

“I have visited numerous arts and cultural centres over the last number of years, and it is abundantly clear to me that we are well served in terms of the number of centres nationwide. The main objective of these capital grants is to maintain and enhance the existing stock of arts and culture centres, many of which need to be upgraded.

“We deliberately made this scheme as flexible as possible to ensure projects of varying sizes could benefit. The largest funding awards – of €1 million each – are going to Wexford Arts Centre and the Riverbank Arts Centre in Kildare. However a wide variety of other projects will also benefit including new lighting and sound systems in theatres, the conversion of an old Post Office to an artist studio and the improvement of digital facilities. These projects all aim to improve the audience and creative experience. This funding package will also ensure past investment in these arts and cultural centres is protected and sustained.

“This kind of investment goes to the very heart of what I am trying to achieve through Creative Ireland and the Action Plan for Rural Development. Creative Ireland aims to place culture and creativity at the heart of every community nationwide, while the Rural Action Plan seeks to revitalise rural towns and villages through a range of investments and initiatives. Of the €9 million in funding I am announcing today, over 85% is going to projects outside Dublin. However, a number of very important cultural facilities in the capital will benefit, including The Irish Film Institute, the Ark, the Gallery of Photography and the Project Arts Centre.

“Creative Ireland aims to promote individual, community and national wellbeing through cultural activity. A vibrant cultural sector is essential to society and investment in local arts and cultural centres helps to facilitate access to and participation in the arts in communities nationwide.

“I will be opening a further Stream of funding under this Scheme (Stream 3) in the coming weeks. It will be geared towards providing smaller capital grants of up to €20,000 to not-for-profit organisations with a defined arts and cultural remit. While the amounts involved are relatively modest, the grants will in themselves make a huge difference to individual organisations.”

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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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