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Pressure mounts on council regarding future of St Finan’s

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By Sean Moriarty

Elected officials from the Killarney Municipal District are puting Kerry County Council management under pressure to make decisions on the future of the St Finan’s Hospital site.

The old hospital – idle since 2012- and its surrounding gardens is currently owned by the Health Services Executive.

The HSE is to offer the property for sale on the private market – this was confirmed to the Killarney Advertiser last month.

Kerry County Council is in the process of buying 5.5 acres of the extended site which is part of the HSE land portfolio (and prior to the construction of the bypass part of the St Finian’s complex) but it is not part of the now separate St Finian’s site south of the By-pass.

The dynamics changed last week when Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien announced the “Housing for All” national homebuilding strategy.

One of the key recommendations of the plans is the release of state owned land for residential construction.

At Wednesday’s Killarney Municipal meeting, Cllr Niall Kelleher asked: “if there discussions with the Land Development Agency regarding acquiring land in Killarney?”

A council official replied: “All options regarding the availability and potential purchase of lands for Housing purposes in Killarney continue to be considered and pursued,”

Mr Kelleher told the meeting that this response was not good enough. Earlier he had said that Killarney is facing a housing problem and that there are ten people for every available rental property in the town.

The majority of the elected councillors agreed that the building needs to be acquired for homebuilding purposes and other uses. They called for the old hospital to be refurbished into apartments and in line with the new national plan.

Only Donal Grady opposed the move citing its former use as a mental hospital as a reason it should not be used for housing.

“A lot of bad things happened up there,” he said.

However all agreed that the building should not be allowed fall into disrepair like other buildings including the Aras Padraig and the Pretty Polly factory.

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Killarney stage to feature in new look Rás Mumhan

Cycling By Sean Moriarty Killarney will play a crucial role in the revival of four-day Kerry Group Rás Mumhan cycle race. The event, one of the biggest road races in Ireland. It has not run since 2019 after Killorglin Cycling Club withdrew from organising it.The organisation of Rás Mumhan was transferred to a committee in […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Killarney will play a crucial role in the revival of four-day Kerry Group Rás Mumhan cycle race.

The event, one of the biggest road races in Ireland. It has not run since 2019 after Killorglin Cycling Club withdrew from organising it.
The organisation of Rás Mumhan was transferred to a committee in County Tipperary but they never got the event off the ground as a result of the pandemic.

A new joint effort between four cycling clubs in Kerry has taken over the running of the event under new race director Daithi Creedon and his committee.

It will be the first major Stage Race on the Irish Cycling Calendar and will take place over the four days of Easter weekend from April 15 to April 18.

Killarney Cycling club will run the second leg of the event – a stage from the town to Sneem via Bealach Oisin Pass on Easter Saturday.

The opening leg will be hosted by Tralee Manor West BC and will start and finish in the county town and run via Annascaul and Castlemaine.

Sliabh Luachra Cycling Club is in charge of day three which takes in Knocknagree, Rathmore and Kishkeam.

The final day is in the hands of Currow Cycling Club and they will run the Knocknagoshel to Headley’s Bridge looped stage.

“This year’s route will allow the riders to race every day, with undulating roads and deliberately staying away from big category 1 climbs, this will open up the race for aggressive racing. Stage four will be a spectator friendly stage and will be a great finale to Rás Mumhan,” said Creedon.

“We wish to acknowledge and thank Killorglin Cycling Club for the fantastic work they have carried out in promoting and running this event in the past.”

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Northern lights delight for Aoife and Sinead

By Con Dennehy The continued growth, development and participation of women’s handball in Kerry was rewarded at the weekend when Tyrone hosted ‘She’s Ace’, the prestigious All Ladies Handball championships. Attracting all the leading players in Ireland, it was the Spa/Killarney trio of Aoife Walsh, Sinead Moriarty and Niamh Faulds who shot out the Northern […]

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By Con Dennehy

The continued growth, development and participation of women’s handball in Kerry was rewarded at the weekend when Tyrone hosted ‘She’s Ace’, the prestigious All Ladies Handball championships.

Attracting all the leading players in Ireland, it was the Spa/Killarney trio of Aoife Walsh, Sinead Moriarty and Niamh Faulds who shot out the Northern lights with a phenomenal display of handball.

In the Ladies ‘Challenger 1 Wall’ competition Aoife Walsh faced a top-class field.

Following quarter and semi-final wins, she went into the final with the favourites tag.

Walsh again produced a sizzling display of handball to outclass her opponent, Emma O’Neill (Tyrone), to clinch the title on a 15-4 scoreline.

There was further joy for the Spa based club when one of their promising new players, Sinead Moriarty, teamed up with Clare Conway (Tyrone) and Carla Corcoran (Tyrone) in the Mixed Grade team competition.

Twelve teams contested this competition with Moriarty key to their success. In the opening rounds the team scored 25-16 and 25-20 to reach the final where they had an impressive 25-22 victory in a classic game that showcased the finer skills of handball.

The other Killarney competitor, Niamh Faulds added to her growing reputation with some impressive games in the “1 Wall’, ‘4 Wall’ and team competitions, winning one game and narrowly loosing out in the other games despite close 25-18, 21-19, 21-17 score-lines.

“This has been a historic and important weekend for women’s handball in Kerry. Winning titles is a massive boost for the sport and something we can build on in the coming weeks and months,” said Jack O’Shea, P.R.O. of the Kerry Handball Board.

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