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KERRY'S EYE THIS WEEK - Published Thursday 18th September, 2014

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The Headlines from Kerry's Eye this week

NEWS

 

Shannon rejects ITT’s €3m bid on Tech Park

A €3 million bid by the Institute of Technology Tralee to buy the Kerry Technology Park has been rejected by the Shannon Group, which owns the facility.

Local politicians and former members of Shannon Development - most of whom believed the new Shannon Group would accept the bid and let the ITT run the facility - have been shocked by the decision.

The ITT launched a fresh bid to buy the KTP in July, and the bid was considered  by the Shannon Group board at a meeting last Friday.

The ITT confirmed on Wednesday that it had received notification from Shannon Commercial Properties that the revised bid for the Kerry Technology Park had been declined by the board of Shannon Group.

Shannon Group told the ITT that the bid fell below market value, and it now considers the Kerry Technology Park as part of its core business.

ITT president, Dr Oliver Murphy, said the decision is a “disappointing development”  and that the ITT “remains committed to the ongoing future development of the Park”.

The KTP is an award-winning facility that has won admiration from government and business all over the world. It is home to hundreds of employees and some of the country’s most successful companies.

Mayor of Tralee, Jim Finucane, said the decision by Shannon Group not to  sell has caused “dismay and  disquiet” and he has asked senior county council  officials to  arrange an urgent meeting with Shannon Group chairperson, Rose Hynes.

“This is the most significant facility in Tralee for job creation. This decision just lets the uncertainty drag on and I have asked for an urgent meeting,” Mayor Finucane said.

Former chairman of Shannon Development and now mayor of Kerry, John Brassil, is also shocked at the decision.

He was of the belief that the €3 million offer would be accepted, but the decision not to sell fell to the new Shannon Group  - after Shannon Development was finally scrapped  on September 5th.

“I’m extremely disappointed the sale did not go through. When the decision was made to merge Shannon Development and Shannon Airport, assurances were given at the highest level that the technology park would be given the recognition it deserves,” Mayor Brassil said.

“I personally don’t see how the Kerry Technology Park in Tralee  would be core business for the Shannon Group, which primarily is a company that oversees Shannon Airport and the Shannon Free Zone.”

Trolley chaos at Kerry General

The HSE is blaming people who are getting “sicker than in previous  years” for chaos in the Emergency department at Kerry General Hospital that saw record numbers of people lying for hours on trolleys this week.On Monday, sixteen patients were waiting for treatment on trolleys in A&E - the highest number of patients ever on trolleys at one time since the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation began keeping records nine years ago.

A relative of one woman suffering from respiratory problems told Kerry’s Eye how his 81-year-old mother-in-law was on a trolley for over 10 hours before getting a bed.

All planned surgery was cancelled this week as the hospital tried to cope with the overcrowding and delays at the emergency department. Eleven patients who were to have planned surgery had their operations postponed, including seven requiring orthopaedic surgery and two scheduled for gynaecology procedures.

Patients were being told to come to A&E only as a last resort, and “explore all other options available to them prior to attending the Emergency Department if their needs are not urgent”.

Problem

The HSE said that more people than normal were getting sick and those arriving at A&E were “sicker than in previous years and require admission for a variety of conditions”.

The INMO dismissed HSE claims and said the problem was down to serious staff shortages.  The HSE said that “due to this increased level of activity and subsequent admission of patients with complex needs, the hospital is advising that other patients may experience significant delays in the emergency department”.

Big match excitement

hits fever pitch in Kerry

There’s no stopping the green and gold this week as the clock ticks down to the biggest double header in years - the entire county is getting behind the Kerry minors and seniors as they prepare to take on Donegal in Croke Park on Sunday.

Tens of thousands of fans are preparing to hit the rocky road to Dublin as anticipation continues to rise in the county.

There’s a double up for grabs in Croke Park - potentially the first Kerry senior-minor double since 1980.

But no matter what happens in Dublin, Kerry County Board, local gardaí and Kerry County Council are preparing for a huge homecoming welcome on Monday. More than 30,000 are expected to turn out - unless both teams draw - with the numbers likely to increase if one or both teams bring home silverware.

The first stop for the Kerry team is Rathmore at 4.40pm, and from there they will travel to Tralee with an expected arrival at 6.10pm.

Killarney is also on the agenda - the teams are expected to arrive at the Glebe Car Park around 9pm.

Read the full story in Kerry's Eye or log on to the digital edition

Killorglin lambs ‘baa-cking’ Kerry

Two Killorglin lambs with a proven record as celebrities are adding their own psychedelic ‘baa-cking’ to the boys in green and gold by going all out with the Kerry colours. Owner Bridget Richardson, Coolbane Heights, Killorglin, used special sheep paint to transform Bressie (2) and Luke (9 months). The lambs are part of a big family of pets cared for by Bridget and her daughters, Kerry (13) and Holly (7).

“I rescue a lot of animals and look after them,” Bridget said. “The children love dressing them up for fancy dress events.

“Bressie has been in the Christmas crib in Milltown,” she said. “He got first in the best dressed sheep section in the Saint Patrick’s Day parade in Killorglin.”

But Bressie and Luke aren’t the only pair of celebrity sheep owned by the Richardsons. Luke and his sister, Toni, appeared at the Glencar Cattle Show as ‘Mr and Mrs Kardashian’.

“They are pure pets,” Bridget said. “We take them for walks on their leads.”

She explained that the green and gold sheep paint, bought at the Kerry Lamb Shop in Killorglin, would eventually fade and that the sheep would be shorn before the end of the year.

Read the full story in Kerry's Eye or log on to the digital edition

 

Winners ready to show their true colours at All-Ireland Finals

Ready to show your true colours and back Kerry for the double? Kerry’s Eye is - and so are the winners of our great ticket giveaway competition.

With thousands and thousands of entries pouring in to Kerry’s Eye over the past two weeks, our All-Ireland competition was one of the biggest we’ve ever held - and no wonder, with five pairs of the hottest tickets in town to give away.

Our five winners were thrilled to hear their names had been drawn out on Tuesday, and there were screams of delight when they received the phone calls to let them know they’d be on the way to Croke Park.

But when they arrived to pick up the hottest tickets in town, there was a further surprise waiting for them - free return train tickets to Dublin for the big match, courtesy of Iarnród Eireann.

Getting behind the Kerry team are winners Aaron Brosnan from Castlemaine, Emma O’Connor from Headford in Killarney, Tralee man Michael O’Callaghan, Patricia Lynch from Moyvane, and Cathal O’Donoghue from Castleisland.

All five are massive Kerry supporters, and will be amongst the tens of thousands of Kerry fans showing their true colours on Sunday.

There’s no doubt who they’ll be supporting - Kerry all the way for the double. And with return trips take care of by Ianród Eireann, the only problem for our winners now is deciding who they’ll be bringing with them!

Read the full story in Kerry's Eye or log on to the digital edition

Get your free Kerry hat

It’s the biggest All-Ireland in Kerry in years, and Kerry’s Eye is leading the drive to turn the county green and gold ahead of Sunday’s senior and minor clashes against Donegal.

We’ve already given away tens of thousands of free Kerry posters, and now we’re bringing All-Ireland fever to a head - by giving away 15,000 Kerry hats absolutely free!

We’ve teamed up with Damien Fitzgerald of Tralee Printing to create these special Kerry For Sam hats that will be distributed to schools throughout the county today and tomorrow.

“These are high-quality hats that every Kerry supporter will want. They’ll help create a massive atmosphere at the match in Dublin and all over the county as we support our two football teams,” he said.

They’re not just for the kids though - these high-quality hats will fit any size, so they’re perfect for adults to taking to the big game too.

Don’t miss your FREE Kerry hat - check your local school, drop in to Kerry’s Eye at Ashe Street in Tralee

Schools: call our special hotline at 066-7149299.

Read the full story in Kerry's Eye or log on to the digital edition

 

IN THIS WEEK’S KERRY’S EYE:

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Court to

hear 95

repossession

cases

 The number of homeowners facing eviction reached record levels this week as banks moved at an unprecedented rate to take homes, investment properties and land off  people who can’t pay their mortgage.

by Aidan O’Connor

Up to 50 homeowners in Kerry who can't pay their mortgage are among the record 95 repossession cases in court today (Thursday).

It's the largest number of cases to come before any monthly sitting of the  Registrar’s Court this year, and indications  are that the problem is getting worse.

Dozens of people have lost their homes or properties in Kerry over the last two years and the local authority is left to deal with the problem of families left without a roof over their heads.

Food bank to open in Tralee

Deliveries to begin in bid to ease food poverty in Kerry

A giant food bank in Tralee is to start deliveries next month and will feed thousands of people suffering from food poverty in Kerry.

The St Vincent de Paul and North and East Kerry Development came together to create the Kerry Food Bank - a giant warehouse that stores leftover food from supermarkets and delivers it to families struggling to put food on the table.

The warehouse has been sourced in Blennerville and is currently being fitted out. A large refrigerated container had been donated to the cause and appeals are under way to find a van to help out with deliveries.

Last year, St Vincent de Paul in Kerry spent thousands  of euro on food vouchers.

SVP chairperson, Junior Locke, said that demand is high and the society helped  over 1,500 families in 2013, up significantly from the previous year.

Read the full story in Kerry's Eye or log on to the digital edition

 

GAA player signs pro Aussie Rules deal

Former Legion player Padraig Lucey (21)  signed a pro deal this week with AFL side the Geelong Cats, after taking part in The Recruit - a weekly show that guaranteed the winner a place on an Australian Football League club’s rookie list.

The Killarney man  - who stands at six foot eight inches tall - was cut from the smash hit show this week, but was immediately snapped up by the Geelong Cats under international player rules.

A lifeguard at the Aquila Club in the Gleneagle, Padraig first kicked an AFL football 18 months ago through  a programme run by ex-Sydney Swans player Tadhg Kennelly.

Padraig, from Knockeenduve, Tralee Road, has played at all grades with Legion in Killarney and was pivotal in the club’s victory over Dr Croke’s in this year’s County Championship. He also played with Saint Paul’s Basketball Club.

Legion’s vice chairman Enda Walsh said the club is delighted for Padraig and his family.

“He has always been a very dominant player with Legion,” Enda Walsh said. “He was about 6ft 4 when he was 16.”

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