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New logo for Kerry Biosphere Reserve

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A unique design has been selected by popular vote as the new logo to represent the Kerry Biosphere Reserve.

NEW LOGO: Akos Csontos (third left) whose logo design has been selected by popular vote as the new logo to represent the Kerry Biosphere Reserve. Pictured from left: Eleanor Turner (Kerry Biosphere Reserve Officer) Noel Spillane (CEO South Kerry Development Partnership) Adrian Steher (Managing Director Killarney Hotels Ltd sponsor of the winning logo design). Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

The open competition received over 30 entries from designers all over the world. These were shortlisted by the Kerry Biosphere Management Committee made up of representatives from South Kerry Development Partnership, Kerry County Council and the National Parks and Wildlife Service. The three shortlisted designs were then put forward to a public vote held via social media in October 2021.

Akos Csontos, who has been living in Killarney for over 14 years, received 55% of the votes submitted and won a €500 cash prize that was kindly donated by the Killarney Hotels Group.

The new logo represents several key elements of the Kerry Biosphere Reserve.

"I have been always captivated by the natural beauty surrounding us here in Killarney and together with my beautiful wife Julia, our six-year-old son Logan and now nearly three-month-old new-born Layla, we always try to spend as much of our family time as possible in the Killarney parklands and Muckross woodland areas," he said.

"Up until December 2020 – when unfortunately, due to the pandemic my position has been made redundant - I had the pleasure to work as an in-house graphic designer and online content creator in one of Killarney’s five-star hotels. Due to its location right in the heart of Killarney National Park, I always felt even that much closer to nature as well and I think it is fair to say that all of Killarney and even greater Kerry residents are so lucky and truly privileged to call this little piece of heaven a home.

Needless to say, I was only delighted to come across the competition details online and I instantly felt connected with the call. In my approach to the logo - apart from the official requirements - I hoped to fit in as much of the core values as possible while maintaining a clean and modern look. I hope the Kerry Biosphere and its rebranding will be successful in raising more awareness on their mission to protect and preserve all this natural beauty, especially after some of the devastating events of last year with woodland fires or not to mention their ongoing battles with rhododendron. If my logo design aids just even that small step in achieving more visibility through their representation, I will feel truly honoured to have helped them along the way."

The competition was sponsored by Killarney Hotels limited who donated the prize money awarded to the selected entry.

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Killarney Triathlon Club’s open water swim on the lake

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On Tuesday evening last, members of the Killarney Triathlon Club took part in a breathtaking open water swim, starting from Dundag Beach and spanning the middle lake to a nearby island. Covering a distance of approximately 1.5 kilometers, the event saw all participants return safely, basking in a well-deserved sense of accomplishment.

Set against the stunning backdrop of Killarney National Park, swimmers enjoyed views of woodlands,  mountains, and Muckross House. Safety was paramount during the swim, as it is in all the club’s events. Essential precautions included the use of tow floats, safety kayakers, and safety boats, ensuring the well-being of all participants.

“Our club is incredibly fortunate to be surrounded by such a beautiful environment,” said Caitriona Shanahan, PRO of Killarney Triathlon Club. “The views during our swims are truly spectacular, and the safety measures we implement help everyone feel secure and enjoy the experience.”

Killarney Triathlon Club offers numerous benefits to athletes of all levels. These include structured training programs, expert coaching, group workouts and more. 

“We welcome all levels and abilities. Joining our club not only improves physical fitness but also offers great fun and the added benefits of stress relief from sea swimming. There truly is nothing like the calming effect of a group swim in the sea.” Caitriona added.

For those interested in joining the Killarney Triathlon Club, more information can be found on their social media platforms and their website, Killarneytri.com.

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Danny Healy-Rae welcomes decision to push back changes for cataract payments

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The Health Service Executive has deferred a move to cut the price it reimburses people for cataract treatments in the European Union and in Northern Ireland, under its overseas treatment schemes and a separate system for the North.

The prices were due to change from the start of this month, but the HSE has pushed the date back so that no one is disadvantaged, and to fully communicate with patients, treatment consultants and providers, cost changes will not come into effect until September 1.

The payments for less complex eye treatments were due to fall from €1,912 to €863 or the National Health Service equivalent of £766 in Northern Ireland. The most common cataract procedure payments were due to reduce from €1,456 to €1,171.

The HSE said that the vast majority of procedures fall into this new payment price. It said that the more complex glaucoma/cataract treatment payments will rise from €1,912 to €4,206.

Danny Healy Rae welcomed the news saying, “Following my representations and raising of this matter in the Dáil, I am glad that the HSE have agreed that they will continue to reimburse the higher rates for cataract procedure for those carried out up to the end of August 2024.

“I am advising anyone who needs to have their cataracts removed to do so now before the change to reimbursement amounts comes in.”

All cataract treatment carried out in Belfast after the 1st September 2024 will be subject to the new DRG rates.

Honouring the Kerry women of the revolutionary period

Kerry County Council is to invite expressions of interest next week for the commissioning and development of a commemorative and artistic piece which will honour the role played by women in Kerry during the revolutionary period between 1912 and 1923.

The project follows a joint motion by the five female members of Kerry County Council who called for the development and commissioning of a meaningful and lasting commemorative piece which would reflect the significant and diverse roles and activities of women and their involvement in the campaign for Irish Independence at the beginning of the twentieth century.

A Working Group, including the five female councillors, has been developing a design brief, and the Council intends to publish a detailed brief for the memorial next week and expressions of interest will be invited.

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