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Minister opens new €3.8m 20-unit social housing development in Rathmore

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It was a busy itinerary for the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Mr Darragh O’Brien TD today (Monday) as he visited numerous projects and developments in Killarney, Farranfore, Barraduff, Rathmore and Tralee.

ROCK ROAD VISIT: Minister for Housing Local Government and Heritage Mr Darragh O’Brien TD visited the Kerry County Council Housing Scheme at Rock Road Killarney on Monday going through the details with the Minister was Coroilín Liston and Adam Stack Housing Department Kerry County Council. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

DETAILS: Minister for Housing Local Government and Heritage Mr Darragh O’Brien TD visited the Kerry County Council Housing Scheme at Rock Road Killarney on Monday going through the details with the Minister was Coroilín Liston and Adam Stack Housing Department Kerry County Council Chief Executive Kerry County Council Moira Murrell Director of Services Martin O'Donoghue and Cathaoirleach Kerry County Council Cllr. Jimmy Moloney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

CHATTING: Minister for Housing Local Government and Heritage Mr Darragh O’Brien TD chatting with Tracey Brosnan as he visited the Co-operative Housing Ireland development in Barraduff on Monday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

Chief among the events on the agenda was the official opening by Minister O’Brien and Minister for Education Norma Foley TD of the new €3.8m 20-unit social housing development in Rathmore, Láthair na Mánach and the official opening of An Carrigín, a 28-unit social housing development in Tralee which involved an investment of €5m.

Minister O’Brien also toured the Island of Geese site in Tralee as well as the Áras Phádraig site in Killarney which are currently being developed by Kerry County Council.

“I was delighted to visit County Kerry and to see first-hand the number of housing projects which are currently in development," speaking during his visit, Minister O’Brien, said.

"Having just launched ‘Housing for All’, the Government’s new housing plan for Ireland, it’s particularly exciting to see a wide range of projects which will provide much needed homes for people. It was also important for me to visit Farranfore and to reaffirm Government’s commitment to the investment in water services infrastructure in Kerry. There are numerous water and wastewater projects at various stages of development all across Kerry which I know people are dependent on.

The funding provided by my Department under the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund (URDF) is helping to further enhance the offering of both Killarney and Tralee, two fantastic towns with a huge tourism offering. All in all it was a great trip to the ‘Kingdom’ and I am looking forward to coming back to see even more progress on the projects currently in train.”

In addition to the opening of these estates, Minister O’Brien also paid a visit to a number of housing developments which are currently under construction in Rock Road, Killarney and Lohercannon, Tralee, as well as visiting the Co-operative Housing Ireland development in Barraduff and the Clúid development in Armagh House, Killarney, which contains accommodation for people in urgent housing need.

The Minister’s schedule also consisted of presentations on and visits to the sites of the Killarney and Tralee Urban Regeneration Development Fund (URDF) Projects, both of which were included in URDF funding announcements by Minister O’Brien in March.

That March funding announcement of €16.06m for the Destination Killarney Project allows for public realm improvements and a traffic management strategy to expand and diversify the town’s core and link it more closely to the National Park, while also regenerating the Áras Phádraig site.

The funding announcement of €15.93m for Tralee allows for the completion of the Town Centre Public Realm, further develop the Island of Geese site and support major areas of intervention for Tralee in relation to its economic growth.

Kerry County Council Chief Executive Moira Murrell and Council officials briefed the Minister on the scope and progress of both URDF projects, and their potential impact to Tralee and Killarney.

In welcoming the Minister to the county, Cathaoirleach of Kerry County Council, Cllr Jimmy Moloney pointed to the significant housing construction programme being undertaken by the local authority.
“With the announcement by the Minister on Thursday of the Government’s new 'Housing for All' programme, we are confident that the work that Kerry County Council is carrying out in relation to the provision of social housing will continue to grow. I am also delighted that Minister O’Brien was able to see the progress of the significant URDF projects in Tralee and Killarney and their potential impact and that these will continue to be supported.”

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Well-known Killarney man, Donncha Crowley, who lives in Woodlawn Park, was joined by his friends and staff from Centra, Muckross Road, to help him celebrate his very special 50th birthday on Saturday. Donncha is a keen cyclist, and well-known for his mastership of Suduko, and expertise on puzzles and general knowledge quizzes, winning many competitions […]

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Well-known Killarney man, Donncha Crowley, who lives in Woodlawn Park, was joined by his friends and staff from Centra, Muckross Road, to help him celebrate his very special 50th birthday on Saturday. Donncha is a keen cyclist, and well-known for his mastership of Suduko, and expertise on puzzles and general knowledge quizzes, winning many competitions down through the years. Photo: Valerie O’Sullivan

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Musician Liam O’Connor back and busier than ever

By Sean Moriarty Local musician Liam O’Connor has gone from zero to hero following the lifting on the ban on live music as a result of pandemic restrictions. On Saturday he played his first gig in over 18 months, next Friday he will release a new single, and before that he will play a special gig […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Local musician Liam O’Connor has gone from zero to hero following the lifting on the ban on live music as a result of pandemic restrictions.

On Saturday he played his first gig in over 18 months, next Friday he will release a new single, and before that he will play a special gig in London.

Liam and his family played at the Kerry County Council organised ‘ANSEO’ concert in North Kerry that was run to coincide with the Listowel Harvest Festival last weekend.

It was his first live show since he played at St Brendan’s College, Killarney when he shared the stage with special guest, former Irish rugby coach, Joe Schmidt. That event took place on March 11, 2020, the night before the country entered its first COVID-19 lockdown.

The ‘ANSEO’ series of concerts signalled the return of live music in Kerry and the O’Connor family shared the stage with other local musicians like Tim O’Shea and his Afro Trad Ireland group.

“People were delighted, they were mad for it, they were obviously missing it,” Liam told the Killarney Advertiser. “But they are not letting go just yet, they are still a bit hesitant.”

This Sunday Liam heads to London were he will help Dan Tim O’Sullivan steer sheep over Southwark Bridge (see page 36 for more on this story).

To cap an exceptionally busy period for the local accordion player, he has joined forces with Moya Brennan of Clannad fame. Brennan and O’Connor will release a new single – ‘Strong in Numbers’ on Friday next, October 1.

They previously performed together at a concert in the Friary in 2017.

“It was such a positive experience for all of us we just had to repeat it,” he added. “So not only have we done this recording of ‘Strong in Numbers’ but we are planning to do the Friary again later this year. After that, I wouldn’t rule anything out.”

Meanwhile, the ‘ANSEO’ series visits Killarney on Sunday night.

The Fair Hill car park will host two shows featuring: The Gleneagle Concert Band; Pauline Scanlon with Mick Galvin; The Small Hours; The Rising; Cathal Flaherty and Truly Diverse.

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