Mass return ‘like winning the lottery’

A PARISHIONER of St John’s Parish in Tralee has described her return to Mass this week as being ‘like winning the lottery’.

Daily communicant Helen Lacey from Hawley Park was delighted to be able to return to Mass at 6.10pm with her brother, Michael O’Neill - their first time attending in person since Level 5 restrictions were imposed in December.

Now both fully vaccinated, she said this gave them an added sense of security in their normal routine of attending daily Mass, which has been a vital lifeline to Ms Lacey since the death of her beloved husband Seán two years and three months ago.

What happened in Kerry this week

A parishioner of St John’s Parish in Tralee has described her return to mass this week as being ‘like winning the lottery’.

 

A photographer recently got to enjoy a bird’s eye view and a ‘golden’ opportunity to snap a pic of a rare bird that hasn’t been seen in the Kingdom for close on 25 years.

 

After nearly 40 years at the coalface of local Kerry politics Councillor Michael Gleeson is retiring from elected public service.

 

One Kerry community has pleaded with the county council to save their treasured riverwalk as they no longer have the resources to look after it.

 

A new Kerry designed dexterity device that aids children to hold a pen or pencil has been hailed for its potential for use by children with cerebral palsy

Covid pushes up cost of renting in Kerry

Covid-19 restrictions are being blamed for the soaring cost of renting homes in Kerry.

The average rent price in Kerry rose by over €10% to €975 in the first quarter of this year, according to property website Daft.ie.

Renters are now paying an average of €1,000 rent per month for a four-bed house in the county. A one-bed apartment will cost €689.

Kerry had the single biggest year-on-year increase of any county in the Republic.

Ready, steady, integrate!

A RUNNING group set up to bring Irish residents, refugees and asylum seekers together is gearing up for the virtual Cork City Marathon in three weeks’ time - and members are keen to get as many people involved as possible.

The Killarney Sanctuary Runners, which helps integrate local Direct Provision residents into the community, is hoping to sign up new members to run, jog or walk part of the 42.2km (26.2 miles) route on June 6.

Member Mike Riordan says the group welcomes everyone from seasoned runners to beginners - and those who sign up will certainly make new friends along the way.

Pandemic puts respite centre on hold

THE Covid-19 pandemic has put plans by Cúnamh Iveragh to build a ‘much-needed’ respite centre in Cahersiveen on hold.

The Cahersiveen-based charity, which supports children and young adults with special intellectual needs, received planning permission to renovate a previously purchased house last December. Cúnamh Iveragh plan to renovate the purchased house to a HIQA standard respite centre which will stand adjacent to a second property where the charity have already set up a day service.

Plans for the much-needed respite centre, which will be available to all families in Kerry, have been in place for years but will now have to be put on hold following the cancellation of this year’s Ring of Kerry Cycle.

Write it down: McKella’s invention a Saor winner

A MILLTOWN woman has designed a dexterity device that aids children to hold a pen or pencil and could be especially useful for children with cerebral palsy.

Mckella Daly’s ‘Saor’ device has already been appraised by an occupational therapist in Mayo, who use it with children aged between four and five years, and found it useful. The device is aimed at helping people express themselves through writing, drawing and painting and has a circular grip that allows the user to hold a pen or brush in a way that does not affect the natural clenched shape of their hand.

Mckella used anthropometric data - human body size and shape - to create the grips based on average hand sizes of small, medium and large. She says the tool may also be helpful for people with arthritis and limited dexterity or for those with motor skill issues.

‘Don’t interfere with wind farm power’

The operator of a wind farm secured a temporary High Court order last week preventing a Kerry landowner from digging up high voltage cables.

Anyone interfering with the cables at Athea, County Limerick, which connect the wind farm to the national grid, could suffer serious and or fatal injuries, the court heard.

The action has been brought ex parte (only the applicant was present) by Dromada Windfarm (ROI) Limited - part of the SSE Group of companies, and operator of a 19-turbine wind farm at Clash South, Athea - against Denis Cremins, from Meenganaire, Knocknagoshel.

Our common lizard is anything but...

THEY’RE NOT as common as their name suggests but scientists researching the common lizard on the Iveragh Peninsula say local knowledge is key in assessing its status.

The elusive creatures occur all over Ireland but their existence in South Kerry is of particular interest to researchers from UCC, who are working on the LIVE Project, a collaboration between university departments, community organisations and local authorities on the Iveragh Peninsula and the Llyn Peninsula in Wales.

The two peninsulas share a lot in common from a geographical, historical, cultural and linguistic point of view. They also have a shared reptile, the common lizard, found on both.

Back and open for business!

It’s been months since their doors were last open for business but for Kerry’s retailers this week the wait is finally over as shops across the county begin welcoming customers back.

David Costello, of David Costello’s Shoes in Castleisland, said trading under the current restrictions is proving to be ‘a different experience’ as he tries to find a balance between catering for appointments and keeping customer numbers within advised limits.

It hasn’t been easy, especially if, like David, you’ve got a lot of appointments booked. On average, David has to fit in 10 or 12 daily appointments, but on one day he had to accommodate as many as 22 bookings - which begins to get tricky when he is limited to just two people in-store per hour.

Locks-ury treatment helps banish the lockdown blues

Last Monday really felt like the lockdown was truly coming to an end for Listowel woman Marilyn Kelly, after months confined to the 5km travel restriction not only did she get the treat of a trip to Tralee, but finally, after a very long wait, she finally got a new hair do.

Taking care of Marilyn on her first day back in the salon was the able staff of Sean Taaffe’s, and on arriving, the Listowel woman said she couldn’t have been more impressed by the measures put in place at the salon to ensure both the staff and clients’ safety.

“It was unbelievable what they have done - you couldn’t feel safer and the staff are fantastic. It’s a wonder they had to close at all, they have everything done so well, but it was necessary at the time.”

Irish Water has failed Fenit says Sheehy

FENIT HAS been failed by Irish Water which has overlooked the fishing village for funding from the Small Town and Village Growth Scheme, a local County Councillor has said.

Councillor Mikey Sheehy said he was ‘utterly disappointed’ when he heard that Fenit hadn’t been included in the first tranche of funding for the scheme that could have eased the conditions he said were ‘strangling’ community and commercial development.

He said this ‘oversight’ by the water utilities company would continue to stifle development in the village at a critical time that presented new opportunities ahead of the opening of the new Tralee to Fenit Greenway.

Covid forces drastic change at Care centre

LIFE for staff and services users at RehabCare on the outskirts of Tralee has changed dramatically due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Based at Blennerville Resource Centre, the service assists people with disabilities through community integration, inclusion and active participation.

Programmes Supervisor at RehabCare Blennerville Resource Centre Jane O’Donoghue said both staff and service users have had a ‘very hard time’ during the pandemic.

Walkers brave bad weather for Nathan’s Walk

Locals in Killarney braved the bad weather to come out and support Nathan’s Walk, named in honour of Marie and Denis O’Carroll son, who was tragically just 14 when he died by suicide.

The walk was another big success this year as individuals and families did their own walk, and donated to Pieta House. Nathan’s family were overjoyed to see so much support, not just from locals, but from people all over the county taking part in various fundraisers for the mental health charity.

Since it began in 2011, Nathan’s Walk has raised over €500,000 for Pieta House - not including the proceeds from this year’s walk, which are still being counted.