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Ministerial welcome for Kerry Airport funding

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KERRY TD and Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport Brendan Griffin today welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross that he is allocating over three quarters of a million euro in Exchequer grants under his Department’s Regional Airports Programme to the Kerry Airport.

This represents the first allocation of support in this year regional airport programme and the grants will go towards safety and security-related projects at the airports that have been approved to date by the Minister.

Speaking today Minister of State for Tourism and Sport Brendan Griffin TD said: “I am delighted with announcement today of this grant for Kerry Airport and with this it shows a firm commitment of the Government to continuing financial support for safety and security measures at the airport. The National Aviation Policy 2015 acknowledges the role played by the regional airports in promoting a level of international connectivity to support the tourism and business sectors in their regions, and Kerry Airport continues to provide vital links in the region. With this grant Kerry airport will be able to move for with a number of safety and security features such as provision of Stop-bar and Additional Taxi-way Signage, and Taxiway Alpha.”

Minister Shane Ross has allocated a total of €1.94m in Exchequer grants under his Department’s Regional Airports Programme to the airports in Donegal, Ireland West Airport Knock and Waterford as well as Kerry.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae also welcomed the funding of €769,000 for Kerry Airport. "This is a very welcome increase from the €310,000 that was received in 2016,” said Deputy Healy-Rae.

“I was very glad that when Minister Ross was in Kerry recently that he visited Kerry Airport, the airport is of paramount importance to the county and it is vital that these much needed funds are allocated to ensure that our airport can continue improving, raising standards in safety and all other aspects of the airport.”

The Kerry TD added: "I was assured by the Minister when he was in Kerry after visiting the airport that the PSO would not be in danger this year, but, I also raised with him the possibility of an International PSO with an airport such as Amsterdam to increase worldwide connectivity for Kerry which would obviously open the doors for more business in towns like Tralee, Listowel, Killarney and Castleisland."

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Trees down, power out and roads flooded due to Storm Barra

Strom Barra has arrived quite violently across the county this morning causing havoc in some areas. At 6am the storm made itself known and as a result a number of trees are down and roads flooded. According to Kerry County Council, there’s some flooding at Fossa near the new brewery and it’s reported that there […]

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Strom Barra has arrived quite violently across the county this morning causing havoc in some areas.

At 6am the storm made itself known and as a result a number of trees are down and roads flooded.

According to Kerry County Council, there’s some flooding at Fossa near the new brewery and it’s reported that there is a tree down close to Lough Guitane National School with motorists advised to avoid the area. There is also a tree down at Brookhill, Kilgobnet.

There’s currently a power outage in Coolcorcoran which cut out at 6am this morning with 89 customers affected. It’s expected that the power will be restored at approximately 1.45pm today.

In other areas, the N71 road is impassable this morning near the Suspension Bridge due to flooding, as well as Pier Road in Kenmare, and trees down on N71 at Gortamullen and on the Roughty Road in Kenmare.

In Tralee, Godfrey Place, Prince’s Quay and Ballyard Road are also experiencing flooding which has now receded as pumps were in place since 5am. The road is reported to be blocked at the Ballyroe Hotel near Tralee due to flooding and there’s some flooding on the road in Ballylongford village but no properties affected currently.

The road is partially blocked at Minard Castle and there’s reports of a tree down 3km west of Killaha on Castletownbere Road.

Useful numbers

Kerry County Council’s emergency phoneline for the duration of Storm Barra is 066 7183588. Crews will respond to issues which arise when it is safe to do so.

Fallen electricity wires/poles and power outages should be reported to ESB Networks on 1800 372 999.

For other emergencies dial 999/112.

To check for power outages go to the ESB Networks website: https://powercheck.esbnetworks.ie/index.html

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Lissi’s love of nature nets prize

After a successful launch year in the Isle of Man in 2020, ‘The Young Nature Blogger 2021’ went international as Kerry Biosphere and Dublin Bay Biosphere joined the competition. Open to anyone under 21, entrants were asked to write up to 500 words about their favourite experience or place in nature. Each Biosphere participating awarded […]

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After a successful launch year in the Isle of Man in 2020, ‘The Young Nature Blogger 2021’ went international as Kerry Biosphere and Dublin Bay Biosphere joined the competition.

Open to anyone under 21, entrants were asked to write up to 500 words about their favourite experience or place in nature.

Each Biosphere participating awarded local prizes with the top entry from each being submitted to the international competition between the three.

This week the two judges for the international element Author Dara McAnulty and Professor Martin Price, Chair of the UK Man and the Biosphere Committee, have unanimously chosen ‘The Otter’ by Lissi Nickelsen (Kerry) as winner of the inter-Biosphere Young Nature Blogger 2021.

“I absolutely love the observational detail in this piece,” Dara McAnulty, author of ‘Diary of a Young Naturalist’ and the youngest ever winner of The Wainright Prize for nature writing said:

“You can really feel that breathless excitement and tension of seeing an otter. The drawing shows how multimedia can be used to great effect in a blog.”

Professor Martin Price added that it “is a beautifully written blog about a very special encounter”.

“I really get the feeling of what Lissi observed so carefully, and her joy about spending time with an otter! And the drawing is wonderful too!”

Lissi will receive a young naturalist writing set from Dara McNulty, a framed otter picture from Wildlife photographer Vincent Hyland, Wild Derrynane, and a family kayak trip in the Kerry Biosphere.

The winning entry can be read on the Kerry Biosphere website www.kerrybiosphere.ie/news.

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