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New national housing plan “an ideal opportunity” for St Finan’s




By Sean Moriarty

The newly launched 'Housing for All' strategy, announced yesterday (Thursday) by Minister for Housing Darragh O'Brien is "an ideal opportunity" for either the Government or Kerry County Council to acquire lands at St Finan’s Hospital for social housing, according to the mayor of Killarney.

One of the key recommendations of the Government's new housing plan is the release of State owned land for residential construction. 
St Finan's is a landmark building, which is a listed and protected structure, has been idle since 2012.

Earlier this year the Health Service Executive (HSE), the current owner of the site, told the Killarney Advertiser that it intends to sell the site to the private sector after other Government agencies declined to take it over.

Under the scheme announced yesterday, the Government will make a €4 billion annual investment in housing and is aiming to deliver 300,000 homes nationally over the next 10 years.

Cllr Marie Moloney, the current Mayor of the town, is expected to raise the issues surrounding St Finan’s at both this month’s Killarney Municipal District meeting and the full meeting of Kerry County Council.

She cited a project in Cork City as the perfect example of what can be done in Killarney.

Earlier this year An Bord Pleanála approved a project to build 46 houses and 220 apartments on the 14-acre former St Kevin’s Hospital site, just west of the city centre.

“The last thing we need is this falling into the hands of private developers that won’t help the housing situation in the town,” she told the Killarney Advertiser.

Another option, according to Cllr Moloney, is to use the existing building as a training and educational hub.

Previously, Cllr Michael Gleeson called for the building to be used as a satellite campus for the Munster Technological University (MTU) and since his retirement in April the Kerry Education and Training Board (KETB) has stated that it's looking to expand its Killarney presence. Officials from KETB have visited the former Pretty Polly factory on Park Road to see if it could be converted into classrooms but no decision has been made on that plan either.

In the past CERT (Council for Education, Recruitment and Training) offered training for the hospitality and catering industries in Killarney and given the current staffing situation in the industry a new training facility geared towards the hospitality sector is another option Moloney is hoping will gather pace.

Kerry County Council is in the process of purchasing lands on the St Finan’s site to build social housing. However, this is to the north of the bypass and not on the grounds of the old hospital.

The new community hospital is currently under construction on the site but this project has raised further alarm bells, as so far, there has been no confirmation on what might happen to the existing buildings.

Cllr Moloney plans to seek clarity from Kerry County Council on this matter too.

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The Michael Commins Country Shows are Killarney bound

The legendary Michael Commins Concert Shows are heading for the Gleneagle INEC on Monday and Tuesday night, August 29 and 30. For over a decade these shows have captivated audiences […]




The legendary Michael Commins Concert Shows are heading for the Gleneagle INEC on Monday and Tuesday night, August 29 and 30.

For over a decade these shows have captivated audiences in Galway and Mayo and this marks the first time they have travelled outside the western province.

Well known promoter, Tom Kelly from Ballina, who was manager of Brendan Grace for 27 years, and who also promotes the concerts of Johnny McEvoy, Mike Denver, Isla Grant, Dan McCabe and others, noticed the market for these country shows in recent years.

“The response of audiences to the Michael Commins Shows in the Salthill and Clayton Hotels in Galway and also in Claremorris and Westport has been phenomenal and I realised right away that these shows would have huge appeal outside the province,” Tom Kelly said.

“Where better a place to start outside of Connacht than in the famous Gleneagle INEC, the heart of Irish tourism and a huge venue for Country Music down through the years. We are being inundated with requests for tickets for both shows with people travelling to Kerry from all 32 counties on the island of Ireland, with some making the journey from England and Scotland and America as well.”

Michael is a journalist, radio and TV presenter from Mayo who for four decades has been promoting traditional Country Music across the western province and around the country through his newspaper columns.

His songs have been recorded by numerous artists including his great and cherished friend, the late Big Tom, along with a host of Irish singers as well as Leona Williams (ex-wife of Merle Haggard) and John Rex Reeves, nephew of the legendary Jim Reeves.

His concert shows have been described by Waterford singer, Paddy O’Brien, as the “most unique, authentic, down-to-earth and homely” country shows on the island of Ireland. The Killarney nights look set to deliver in style on Paddy’s summation of these amazing shows.


The show on Monday August 29, features Brendan Shine, Gerry Guthrie, Art Supple, Tony Kerr, Louise Morrissey, Lisa Stanley, PJ Murrihy, Matt Keane, Olivia Douglas, Aisling Rafferty, Ross Molloy, Paudie McAuliffe, Gavin Gribben, Noreen Ashe, and the Ryan Turner Band.

The Tuesday night sees another brilliant line-up featuring John Glenn, Declan Nerney, Sandy Kelly, Paddy O’Brien, Eddie Lee, Annmarie O’Riordan, Thomas McBride, Pat McKenna, Muriel O’Connor and Fran Curry, Mick Mulhern, Elle Marie O’Dwyer, Aoife Leonard, Matthew O’Donnell, Kevin Prendergast, Richard Mulligan, the Ryan Turner Band and Billy Condon.

Tickets are selling fast and are now available from the Gleneagle INEC box office (064 6671555),, and from Patsy on 086 1551841.

And the Killarney Advertiser has two pairs of tickets for the Michael Commins Country Shows up for grabs.

To be in with a chance of winning a pair of tickets just answer the following question in the comments section by heading over to our Facebook page:

Name one of the female artists on the Michael Commins Concert Shows?

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Beaufort GAA launch car raffle fundraiser

By Sean Moriarty Beaufort GAA is raffling a brand new Ford Focus to raise funds for a new winter training pitch. The club took delivery of the new car this […]




By Sean Moriarty

Beaufort GAA is raffling a brand new Ford Focus to raise funds for a new winter training pitch.

The club took delivery of the new car this week and the first tickets for the raffle were sold at Puck Fair.

Tickets are available from any member of Beaufort GAA at a cost of €25 each or three for €60.

The growing club needs new winter training facilities for its men’s, ladies and juvenile teams.

“We found that our current pitch was getting badly cut up in the winter and autumn and felt this new all-weather was the way to go,” club chairman, Neil Doherty, told the Killarney Advertiser.

“We started selling this week at Puck and so far the response has been very good.”

Ticket will remain on sale until next year with a draw date set for around Easter time.

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