Nollaig Shona agus Athbhliain Faoi Mhaise Duit - Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Scéal Dún-na-nGall ar an Idirlíon / County Donegal on the Net News    Vol.5 No.2 November / December 2003    Holiday In Ireland in 2004

Oideachais na mBan, Baile na Finne
Béidh caint le ealaíontóir, Heidi Nguyen, de Luain seo chugainn, (15 Nollaig ag 7.30úr) sa Digiteach i mBaile Aird, Baile na Finne. Fáilte gach ban. Le tiollamh eolais a fháil cuir r-phóst .
Artist Heidi Nguyen will give a workshop at Hightown, Fintown on December 15th at 7.30pm. All women interested in expression through art or in joining the women's group are invited to come along.

Poll a' Cailleach (Hag's Hole) by Heidi Nguyen Oil on Board 76x91.5cm (2002) ©
Poll a' Cailleach (Hag's Hole) by Heidi Nguyen Oil on Board 76x91.5cm (2002) ©

The budget surprise was the Government's announcement that they are relocating 10,000 civil servants to the regions with the removal of nine Government departments to various Midland and Western Counties over the next three years.
However Donegal received only 3% of the allocation in spite of the County having the highest unemployment rate in Ireland at 16.5%.
Thirty civil servants will come to Gweedore with the relocation of Foras na Gaeilge, the all-Ireland language body, to the West Donegal unemployment black spot where one thousand jobs have been lost in recent years. Another 130 jobs will come to Buncrana although it is not yet clear from which Government Dept they will come.
Income Tax remains the same in next year's Budget with incomes up to €28k taxed at 20% and everything above that taxed at 42% - currently one-third 1/3 of the Irish workforce have some percentage of their income taxed at 42%.

Berkeley's New Single
Berkeley have released 'Follow Through' as a single from their Debut Album 'Hope, Prayers and Bubblegum' on Supremo Recordings. The Donegal rock band played the Belfast Queens Festival in November.

A to Z of the Best Irish Sites

Frankie Kennedy Winter School
The annual Frankie Kennedy Winter School takes place from December 28th to January 2nd, 2004 in Gweedore. For further details email .

Donegal man at fore of good race relations
John Cassidy, a native of Clougher, is a supervisor with Dublin Bus, which employs a workforce taken from 46 different countries. It was John's idea to train a multicultural Gaelic football team and to this end he trained thirty Gaelic players from Nigeria, Bosnia, Romania, China and Argentina who work for Dublin Bus. The team have since played charity matches in aid of Our Lady's Hospital for Sick Children in Dublin.

TravArt are exhibiting recent works at the Letterkenny Arts Centre, Central Library, Letterkenny, from December 2nd to December 20th 2003.
TravArt's innovative works interweave the traditional skills of the Traveller community such as welding, tinsmithing, ceramics and woodwork with their unique artistic vision.

Philadelphia Ceili Group - 40 years on
The Philadelphia Ceili Group will celebrate "Forty Five Years Along the Road" at their annual Christmas Ceili on Saturday December 20th in the Grand Ballroom of the Commodore Barry Club, Carpenter Lane and Emlen Street in West Mount Airy. For further information call (215) 849-8899 or visit the website at Philadelphia Ceili Group.


Clonmany Project to tackle Youth Drinking
The Clonmany Youth and Community Resource Centre has been organising alcohol free teenage discos in a effort to keep youngsters off the streets and away from underage drinking. Lack of youth resources is one reason for underage drinking and initiatives like this one in Clonmany are to be welcomed.

Members of Comhaltas Ceoltóir Éireann in Britain, Cúlra, recently toured County Donegal. The group visited An Gaeltacht Láir under the auspices of the Digiteach, Fintown where they visited the Robert Emmet commemorative exhibition and later the Issac Butt Centre in Cloughan.

New Book from Hazel McIntyre
Culdaff author Hazel McIntyre has launched her new book - 'Bourne on the Wind' a semi-biographical, historical novel based on the lives of Hazel's great, great grandparents who emigrated to America in the early 19th century.

Tory Baby Alert
A young mother to be on Tory Island had to avail of the Aer Corp helicopter this month when she went into early labour. The helicopter had to come over 100 miles from Sligo but the Aer Corp team and the island's nurse managed to get the young mother to Letterkenny General Hospital in time for the birth and mother and daughter were subsequently flown back to the island. Apparently there hasn't been a child actually born on the island since the 1960's as mothers to be come to the mainland well in advance to avoid complications.

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Houses and Sites for Sale & Accommodation to Rent in Donegal

County Council propose €11,710 new house levy
Under the Bench-marking scheme each County Council must levy new house buyers with a surcharge to pay for infastructural developments and each Council must decide the levy it will charge by next March. Donegal County Council are proposing to levy €11,710 on new houses which would push the average house price in rural Donegal to €150,000 and €200,000 in urban areas of the County.
County Councillors, aware that the local elections are next year, are wary of putting such a burden on first time buyers in particular, but with the small population in the County the charges will certainly be among the highest in the Country.
One benefit might be that people will start to renovate older, traditional dwellings to avoid the levy.

Richard Gilpin's new CD '33'
Richard Gilpin's band, comprising of brothers, Michael and Liam McGinty from Ballybofey on Bass and Drums respectively and Dutch Guitarist, Remco Rodrigues, have released a new CD entitled '33'. The Richard Gilpin Band has built up quite a following at home and abroad. See Richard Gilpin.

Richard Gilpin
Convoy based singer / songwriter Richard Gilpin

The Sky at Night
Donegal residents have been lucky to have witnessed the Aurora Borelis on several occasions during November and December. The recent explosion on the sun and our unpolluted night sky have meant that the phenomena, which isn't usually seen at this latitude, was clearly visible in all its resplendent colours.
Malin Head weather station observed that only half the average amount of rain fell between mid-October and mid-November with ten days during which no rain fell at all. Rainfall total for the month was just 66mm while the monthly sunshine total reached 96 hours - 26% above average for this time of year.

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