Connect with us

News

Trail of destruction is “extremely distressing” – Chamber President

Published

on

​​​​​​​
Anybody with information that may help identify what or who caused the fire in Killarney National Park is being urged to report the matter to the authorities immediately.
Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce President, Niall Kelleher, made the appeal this afternoon saying that the "appalling scenes" in Killarney National Park over the weekend have left "a dreadful trail of destruction" and has caused "real upset in Killarney".
"First-hand reports from those involved in fighting the fires, and photographic coverage and video footage showing large sections of our iconic Killarney park ablaze, have been difficult to digest and the whole episode is extremely distressing," he said.
"Killarney National Park is the jewel in Ireland’s tourism crown and the impact the fires have had, causing extensive damage to approximately one third of the park, scorching the land and decimating wildlife, including rare and important habitats and species, has been met with shock and dismay by everybody."
Overall, it is estimated that several thousand acres of the park was burned and it is impossible for anybody that loves Killarney National Park to try to come to terms with such sheer and utter ecological wreckage, he added.
"A number of ancient woodlands were severely damaged and will take a long number of years to recover but at least the magnificent wood at Tomies was protected, thanks to the phenomenal efforts of the emergency service and volunteers. In addition to putting our park and adjoining properties and households at risk, the fires also placed a huge and unnecessary burden on the emergency services who have been the true heroes throughout a very long and difficult weekend. No words of mine can adequately sum up the bravery and dedication of the Kerry Fire Service, the National Parks and Wildlife personnel, Kerry County Council crews, Killarney Water Rescue, Search and Recovery Unit, Killarney Meitheal volunteers, the Air Corps, private helicopter operators and all others who played their part in fighting the inferno," he said.
DEDICATED
"That they had to leave their homes and families in the midst of a pandemic shows just dedicated they are and how much they love and want to protect our wonderful park. Their commitment was extraordinary, they toiled to the point of exhaustion and we thank them for their bravery and dedication."
Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce believes that it is imperative now for a full investigation to be launched into the cause of this devastating incident, not only to attempt to discover who was responsible for the carnage but to identify ways to lessen the chances of it ever happening again.
"Whether it was a carelessly discarded match, the remnants of a barbecue or bonfire or a deliberate act of vandalism that sparked the blaze, it appears it was entirely irresponsible and reckless and it shows a disregard not only for nature but for human life. Chamber would urge anybody with any information that may help identify what or who caused the fire to report the matter, without delay, to the authorities.
It should also be remembered that Section 40 of the Wildlife Acts 1976 prohibits the cutting, burning or destruction of vegetation, with certain strict exemptions, from March 1 to August 31. That law is there for a reason and it must be adhered to. As custodians of Killarney National Park, it is incumbent on all of us to work together to find solutions to avoid this happening in the future and, in the meantime, the long-term recovery of our wonderful national park must be the priority.
"Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce welcomes proposals to double the number of rangers in our National Parks and, of course, given the importance and value of Killarney National Park to the country and to the world, it is not unreasonable to expect that the majority will be based here."
Continue Reading
Advertisement

News

Killarney co-drivers to the fore at this weekend

Two Killarney-based co-drivers will contest this weekend’s Trackrod Rally Yorkshire, the fourth rounds of the British Rally Championship. The two-day event gets underway tonight (Friday) with one stage set to be run under the cover of darkness. On the startline will be Muckross man Noel O’Sullivan and Aghadoe’s Mikie Galvin. O’Sullivan, co-driver to Welshman Osian […]

Published

on

0210227_20210814113950.jpg

Two Killarney-based co-drivers will contest this weekend’s Trackrod Rally Yorkshire, the fourth rounds of the British Rally Championship.

The two-day event gets underway tonight (Friday) with one stage set to be run under the cover of darkness.
On the startline will be Muckross man Noel O’Sullivan and Aghadoe’s Mikie Galvin.

O’Sullivan, co-driver to Welshman Osian Pryce, is the current leader of the series while Galvin, who reads pacenotes for fellow Killarney and District Motor Club member, West Cork’s Keith Cronin, is eighth after missing the opening round.

“The element of darkness certainly brings an additional challenge to all the crews, especially since most of us will not have done any night stages for some time, the most recent I did was in 2017 on the Ulster Rally,” Cronin noted.

The route layout reads like an extract from the itinerary of the World Championship counting RAC Rally of the 1980s, featuring familiar locations such as Dalby, Gale Rigg and Langdale, and it will be the Dalby Forest test that opens the competition shortly after 8pm tonight.

Meanwhile, Irish rallying returned last Sunday after the pandemic-enforced lay-off with the ‘Munster Car Club’s Cork 20’.

London-based Listry co-driver Shane Buckley was the best of the local entrants, guiding Daniel Cronin, Keith’s brother, to fifth overall.

Ger Conway and his driver Stephen Wright were just two places and 8.9 seconds behind in another Ford Fiesta RC2. It was Conway’s first taste of a RC2 car since he and Rob Duggan finished second overall on the 2018 Donegal International Rally.

“There is a taste of more after this,” said Ger after a trouble-free day.
Damien Fleming came close to making it four local co-drivers in the top 10. He and his driver Stephen McCann were 11th, just 16.6 off the leader board. They said it took a while to get used to the bumpy Irish tar after a recent trip to the Tour of Flanders in Belgium.

Continue Reading

News

Education Minister officially opens The Mon’s new classrooms

A town primary school – which has a deep connection to Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty – has a whole new look which was officially opened today (Friday) by the Minister for Education. Norma Foley TD officially opened the newly constructed wing to the Presentation Monastery Primary School on New Road which will house two special needs classrooms, a multi-sensory room […]

Published

on

0210432_Presentation_Mon_New_Wing12.jpg

A town primary school – which has a deep connection to Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty – has a whole new look which was officially opened today (Friday) by the Minister for Education.

Norma Foley TD officially opened the newly constructed wing to the Presentation Monastery Primary School on New Road which will house two special needs classrooms, a multi-sensory room and a general-purpose hall.

The project, which was funded by Department of Education along with money raised by the school as part of their ‘THE MON-ster Fundraiser’, was just one of three officially opened new additions to the school along with a special dedication of the school’s hall in honour of Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty, a past pupil of the school from 1909-1914.

Also, The Most Rev. Ray Browne, Bishop of Kerry, officially opened a three-classroom extension at the school’s present site which was opened in 1958 having moved from its College Street location which was opened in 1838 by the Presentation Brothers.

Former Supreme Court Judge Hugh O’Flaherty and Mrs Pearl Dineen the nephew and niece of Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty officiated over the dedicating of the school’s new hall to past pupil, Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty, in recognition of his heroic deeds during WWII.

O’Flaherty, who also taught at the school later, became better known for the role he played in World War II while at the Vatican leading over 6,500 prisoners of war, partisans and Jews to freedom to earn him the title of the ‘Vatican Pimpernel’, leading to the 1983 film ‘The Scarlet and the Black’ with Gregory Peck portraying the role of O’Flaherty.

OUTDOOR CLASSROOM

A special outdoor classroom ‘Dotts Garden’, dedicated to the memory of Dorothy (Dott) Hennggler the 2011 Washington DC Rose who died at the family home in Baltimore from a brain tumour, was officially opened by Anne O’Shea (aunt of the late Dorothy), and Àine McMahon (cousin of the late Dorothy and BOM member). The outdoor classroom was beautifully decorated over the summer by artist Katríona Lynch.

Due to COVID restrictions, the main event took place outdoors with staff joined by a small group of pupils selected from each of the classes representing the student body along with members of the school’s Board of Management.

“Your achievements have been remarkable over the last number of months,” Minister of Education, Norma Foley, said today at the official opening.

“It is my wish going forward that the next year in education will be less complicated, less trying and less difficult one. I think school staff are deserving of that. We can put the COVID atmosphere behind us and we are moving positively along. We hope that in a few months we will talk about living in a post-COVID time. The story of Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty speaks of the calibre of students produced here, but it also speaks of the courage and bravery and vision that Kerry people can have in the most difficult and trying of times.”

School principal Colm Ó Suilleabháin, who is shortly moving on to St Oliver’s NS in Ballycasheen, was delighted to be in attendance to see the building come to fruition.

“It’s a fantastic culmination of hard work by the staff and the Board of Management, and we are delighted to see the school is fully equipped and resourced for the next generation of pupils from Killarney and beyond,” he said.

Continue Reading

LOCAL ADS

Last News

Advertisement

Sport

Trending