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Protest planned as community lashes out at lack of consultation on asylum seeker plan

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JUST days ahead of the confirmation that Linden House would be used as an accommodation centre for asylum seekers, Kerry County Council member Donal Grady had called for the property to open its doors to homeless people in Killarney.

Speaking to Killarney Advertiser, the former mayor of Killarney said: “The council should open up Linden House on New Road to homeless people and not send these people to Tralee. We should look after our own first. There are at least 25 homeless people in Killarney at the moment and people who are homeless in this town continue to be sent to Tralee for accommodation. We are miles behind other counties when it comes to catering for homeless people.”

Cllr Grady is now planning a protest at the former hotel on New Road, next week. “We have fulfilled our duty in Killarney, re asylum seekers,” he said.

Referring to the fact that the road features four schools, Cllr Grady said a number of parents had been in touch with him in relation to the protest and added: “This proposal by whom is not known as yet is where our children and grandchildren are going to school.”

Linden House, he added, was a property “lying idle”. “Shame on us for not doing something,” he said. “People are sleeping rough or are being sent to Tralee.”

The use of the former hotel in Killarney to house 55 asylum seekers has sparked concerns at a lack of consultation.

The Department of Justice has confirmed Linden House, which was formerly used as a direct provision centre, has been refurbished and will become home to people currently in the asylum and refugee process.

It declined to comment on the breakdown of age, gender or country of origin of those that will be accommodated in Killarney.

Kerry Independent TD Michael Healy-Rae said he believed the group of 55 comprises “all males of mixed nationality who have made applications for international protection”.

He told Killarney Advertiser: “I believe the local authority and local community should have been consulted on this important matter as to who these people are, where they are coming from and what is the expected plan for long term housing, as it seems like a large concentration of people in the one location. I share the concerns of the people who have been in contact with me about this matter."

Deputy Healy-Rae added: "As these people will only be housed in temporary accommodation, I believe that a number of these people may seek social housing in time, which would be only putting increased pressure on an already large waiting list for housing in Killarney and Kerry."

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Killarney centre stage for Pride Festival

The award-winning Kingdom Pride in Kerry festival is back next week and Killarney will take centre stage. Kingdom Pride will be celebrated in towns all across the county from July […]

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The award-winning Kingdom Pride in Kerry festival is back next week and Killarney will take centre stage.

Kingdom Pride will be celebrated in towns all across the county from July 17 to 21.

The organisation’s flagship Party in the Park event will be held again in Killarney House and Gardens, following the Pride march in the town centre on July 20.

This year, in solidarity with the people of Palestine, Kingdom Pride in Kerry is inviting the people of Kerry to come to show their unity by bringing Palestinian flags and kites to the march, and to the Party in the Park.

“Pride is a protest for human rights all over the world. Here in the Kingdom, we have been so lucky to receive tremendous community support from our allies and supporters, and we see the struggle for liberation of all peoples as a united cause,” said Daniel Quirke, chairperson of the organising committee.

“Our events have always welcomed everyone, regardless of gender, orientation, religion, or nationality. We truly believe that together we can create positive change through caring for and loving one another. This year is no exception, and we look forward to helping to highlight the Palestinian cause, and to bringing people together to keep generating positive change for all people.”

Events will take place in Cahersiveen, Listowel, Killorglin, Tralee and Dingle, and include an Irish comedy night with Áine Gallagher, an Irish-language movie screening, yoga, sea swimming, poetry and storytelling, bowling, pitch and putt, a lively drag night at the INEC, and plenty more for people of all ages.

“We do our best to keep tickets as low-cost as possible, and we have lots of events that are totally free to attend. It is important to us that people can share Pride with us, regardless of income. Especially with the rise of the cost of living putting a strain on people’s pockets.” added the chairperson.

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A weekend of Live Music, Fun and Entertainment, at FleskFest 2024

The organisers of the annual FleskFest have “a tremendous line-up, with a weekend full of entertainment to suit all” for the July 18 to 20 event. “It promises to be […]

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The organisers of the annual FleskFest have “a tremendous line-up, with a weekend full of entertainment to suit all” for the July 18 to 20 event.

“It promises to be the festival weekend of the summer, an event you don’t want to miss out on. Last year’s Festival was a fantastic memorable experience for our community, a time to get together and celebrate,” said festival PRO Seán Daly.

Organised by Glenflesk GAA, FleskFest 24 will take place at the Barraduff Community Field next week.
There will be a fully licensed bar in the Fest Marquee, some amazing live music on The Big Stage, food trucks and much more.
Glenflesk GAA club’s biggest fundraiser of the year includes a new-for-2024 Texas Holdem Poker Tournament on Thursday night.
Weekend highlights include old-time waltzing, jiving and polka sets with Paudie McAuliffe and Paudie Coffey Band on Friday,
On Saturday, the new Well Flesk event will take place.
“A morning of self-care and wellness at Flesk Fest featuring masterclasses in yoga, pilates, mindfulness, spinning, fitness sessions, workouts, firewood sauna and ice pods with a range of experienced and qualified instructors,” added Daly.
Leading local musician Johnny Courtney and Friends, Sam and Ina, The O’Donoghue Sisters, Reigning All Ireland Champions Glenflesk Ballad Group, and The Border Boys will take to the Big Stage over the weekend.
Sunday is Family Fun Day with children’s entertainment and disco and the All-Ireland Hurling Final Live on the Big screen followed by music with Thingamajig.
The festival will finish with a Sunday evening session with the Meadhbh Walsh Band.

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