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
News Vol.7 No.5 December 2006    Holiday In Donegal in 2007!

Too Mean to Spend Christmas?
The Ballybofey and Stranorlar Chamber of Commerce came to the notice of the national press when they choose not to pay the €16,000 it would cost to illuminate the Twin Towns for the Holiday period.
Ballybofey, in particular, is a busy shopping town and the Chamber's decision has come in for some criticism across the County.
Meanwhile in Buncrana the President of the local Chamber of Commerce, Patrick McLaughlin, has refuted criticism of the town council over their refusal to pay for Christmas lights in the seaside town. Mr. McLaughlin said that the ESB should be prepared to help out with the cost of Christmas lights - 'When you consider how much money the ESB takes from Buncrana each year it is a bit unfair to think that they can’t even contribute that small amount back that would ensure the town is lit well at Christmas' he commented.

New Report on Driving Practises in North West
Drink-driving, road-racing and dangerous driving manoeuvres are all commonplace on County Donegal's roads, according to an official investigation into road deaths in the Border Counties.
The statistics reveal Donegal as having one of the worst records for fatal drink-related road crashes, the highest of all the border Counties.
The report has been compiled by the Health Service Executive, Gardai, the Road Safety Authority, the National Roads Authority and the Police Service of Northern Ireland.
Donegal has emerged as having an alarming "laid back attitude to drink-driving" as well as bad driving practices which contributed to the highest number of fatal crashes in all of the Border Counties.
The report showed that "racing involving young men between the ages of 17 and 24 was now a familiar sight in Donegal" and was regarded as a "rite of passage" by many of the County's young men.
Donegal also emerged as having the highest number of single-vehicle fatal crashes over an eight-year period, accounting for 25% of all such crashes in the Republic of Ireland.
In response to the Report Donegal County Council's Road Safety Officer, Eamon Browne said - " There is a serious need for education among 17 to 24 year-olds, to change the mindset that this type of driving is acceptable on our roads."
The report showed that drivers from Northern Ireland were involved in more crashes in Donegal than in any other border County and that one in five crashes in the Republic's border Counties involved drivers from the North.
This year's death toll on the Republic's roads now stands at 341.

Inishowen Partnership
The Inishowen Partnership is recruiting participants for the fifth Teach Project which is due to commence on December 4th. Anyone who lives in the Clar areas of Inishowen, and who is interested in learning basic computer useage is eligible for the project which takes place in participants' own homes. The course is completely free to anyone living in the target areas. A tutor will call to your home with 4 laptops, teaching 4 people at a time, 2 hours a week for 12 weeks. Course content includes computer operations, letter writing, Microsoft Word, Internet and email. For more information contact Sinead Callaghan on 086 8216306 / 9362218.

Donegal News on Air
Patricia Sharkey, editor of this Newsletter, can be heard in Pennslyvannia on 'Echoes of Erin' WEDO 108FM on Sundays from 1.00-2.00pm and online at Echoes of Erin. The show is hosted by Diane Byrnes, former Grand Marshal of the Pittsburgh St Patrick's Day Parade and the doyen of everything Irish in Pittsburgh. If you want your Irish Goods or Services to reach the Pittsburgh Irish then advertise on 'Echoes of Erin' by emailing . If you are in Sydney you can listen to Sydney Irish Radio 107.3FM on Sundays from 7.30 to 9.00am local time (see Sydney Irish Radio) while Brisbane listeners can catch Mike Cunningham's show on 4EB 98.1 FM with Patricia Sharkey's 'View from the Hills' on Saturdays between 12.30 and 1.30pm.

Fundraiser for the IWA
The Irish Wheelchair Association Is seeking volunteers to participate in its 22nd Annual International Sponsored Walk during Easter 2007.
The first stage of this venture is through the Cambodian countryside, exploring the famous Angkor-Wat – the giant Khmer Temple buried deep in the Cambodian jungle. The second stage of the walk explores Thailand’s capital city Bangkok.
The funds raised will help the Irish Wheelchair Association to provide essential services to tens of thousands of people with physical disabilities in Ireland. For more information see IWA.

Rossport Update
There has been a concerted smear campaign over the last month designed to criminalise local opposition to Shell's project in Mayo.
A concerted campaign has been waged by sections of the media alleging that the campaign is centred on intimidation and is run by subversive elements.
The reality is that Shell's project does not have the consent of the majority of the people directly affected by it, the people of Mayo and under the fiscal terms governing the project no benefits whatsoever will accrue to the people of Ireland.
This week the Shell to Sea campaign welcomed a declaration of support it received from Terje Nustad, leader of SAFE which represents 7,000 oil and gas industry workers in Norway. Mr Nustad spent three-days in North Mayo afterwhich he said: 'Statoil's actions in Mayo are against the ethical values that they would apply in Norway. Statoil would not dare to act in this way in Norway'.
Mr Nustad pledged his union's support to the Shell to Sea campaign to bring information regarding Statoil's involvement in the Corrib gas project to political leaders and public opinion in Norway.

Sult Arís
Beidh an chéad Sult eile, an ceann deireanach roimh an Nollaig, ar siúl an Déardaoin seo, 30 Samhain. Beidh an club ar siúl mar is gnách sa Bull and Castle, in aice le Jurys Inn, Teampall Chríost. Osclóidh na doirse ar 9.00 p.m. agus tosóidh an ceol beo gan mhoill ina dhiaidh sin. Seo iad aíonna na seachtaine seo:
grúpa tí Sult; Eoin Warner (amhránaí sean-nóis ó iarthar Chorcaí); Alalé (grúpa atá lonnaithe i nGaillimh a sheinneann meascán de cheol traidisiúnta as Galicia agus as an Spáinn agus ceol traidisiúnta na hÉireann) agus Azirah (damhsóir boilg). Eolas breise faoi na haíonna le fáil ag: Club Sult.
Eolas eile: Beidh ticéid ar díol ag Sult na seachtaine seo (ar phraghas laghdaithe: €10/€7) do cheolchoirm mhór, Cóisir na Nollag, a bheidh ar siúl sa Village, Sráid Loch Garman Déardaoin, 7 Nollaig. Aíonna: Rattle and Hum, Rónán Ó Snodaigh, Traic, grúpa tí Sult. Brabús don charthanacht Alone. Eolas: (01) 4753658. Faigheann Sult tacaíocht airgid ó Fhoras na Gaeilge.

Sinn Féin gear up fo election
Among the numerous Sinn Féin press releases received by this desk this month Sinn Féin's Donegal South West representative, Councillor Pearse Doherty, has called for an immediate halt to the closure and downgrading of rural post offices in County Donegal.
Cllr Doherty's comments came after the Irish Postmasters' Union warned that the future of the post office network could be jeopardised by the strain of declining business and the possible future loss of social welfare payments.
Cllr Doherty disclosed that in the past seven years a total of 25 post offices in Donegal have been downgraded or closed.
Cllr Doherty said: "In March this year, Sinn Féin tabled two Dáil Questions to the Minister, specifically demanding answers about the closure and downgrading of rural Post Offices in Donegal. Both questions were disallowed on the grounds that the Minister 'has no official responsibility for this matter', purportedly because it is an 'operational matter' for An Post. 'Dublin Departments are presiding over the demise of rural Ireland for the benefit of big business. The current Government is washing its hand of rural communities, which simply should not be forced to do without basic services like local post offices,' Cllr Doherty declared.

Lettekenny to City of Derry and Belfast Airports
Airporter have announced that their planned expansion to Letterkenny has been brought forward, and services will now start on Monday 4th December to facilitate the number of people travelling to the Belfast Airports over the Christmas period. In addition, a brand new connection from Letterkenny and Derry to the City of Derry airport will be launched on the same day.
Airporter will initially operate 8 services a day Monday to Friday between Letterkenny and the Belfast Airports (via Derry), and 5 services a day between Letterkenny and the City of Derry Airport (via Derry). A full weekend service is also available. full timetable details are available online at Airporter

Donegal Landfills named in EU Polluters list
THREE landfill sites in Donegal and a fish factory in Killybegs have been named in an EU report as being among the State's leading air polluters.
The report, produced in conjunction with the Environmental Protection Agency, names Ballynacarrick, Balbane and Churchtown landfill sites as well as United Fish Industries in Killybegs. The report named a total of 183 businesses throughout the Republic. For more information see The Environmental Protection Agency

Annual Sales of work & Christmas Events in Inishowen
The Inishowen Environmental Group Annual Tree Sale will take place on Saturday December 2nd at 11.00am at Donagh Cross Carndonagh. A variety of native trees and shrubs will be available €2 euro each.
A one day cookery demonstration will take place in the Wesley Hall on Saturday, 9th December from 11 - 4pm. The full Christmas dinner will be cooked on the day and participants will have a sit down meal. Numbers will be strictly limited to 12, on a first come basis.
A Christmas Sale will take place upstairs in the Wesley Hall on Monday 4th December at 8.30pm. There will be baking, jams, bric a brac, ornaments, books and toys. All proceed to the Third World.
CCS Christmas Bingo will take place in the Community School on Sunday, 10th December at 3pm. Terrific side prizes and loads of cash to be won.
Sunset over Gweebarra

December Sunset, Gweebarra 2006

Anglers Up in Arms
Donegal Anglers are angry over plans to close three of the County's premier salmon rivers due to dwindling stocks. In a effort to conserve salmon stocks the Department of Marine has released draft regulations to close up to 32 rivers across the Country including the rivers Lennon, Lackagh and Eske in County Donegal.
The Chairman of the Donegal Game Angling Federation said it could take up to five years for the rivers' salmon stocks to be replenished.

Irish-American Novel Finalist in Best Books Awards 2006
It May Be Forever - An Irish Rebel on the American Frontier by David M. Quinn has been named a finalist in the historical fiction category by Their citation reads "A beautifully written historical novel filled with excellent research and characters! Highly recommended!"
It May Be Forever (ISBN: 1420880918) recounts the real-life adventures and tragedy of Michael Quinn (1846-1934). Born into famine-era poverty in rural Ireland, Michael and his family flee to England, where Michael becomes a child labourer in the textile mills of Lancashire where he joins the Fenians. He later emigrates to America, where an ill-fated Fenian invasion of Canada lands him on the untamed plains of the Wild West.
The author, David M. Quinn was born in Oak Ridge, Tennessee in 1945. An interest in genealogy led to his discovery of the remarkable life of his great, great uncle, Michael Quinn. Extensive research in Ireland, England, and the United States has resulted in an authentic look at the times in which Michael Quinn lived. Copies at reduced prices available at the author's website: It May Be Forever.

Online Index of the Best Websites on Irish Stuff!

Glenties Woman is top Computing Engineer
Maire McLoone from Glenties has been selected as a finalist in the Young Woman Engineer of the Year award. The 28-year-old is one of only five finalists in the prestigious EU award run by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), the largest professional engineering association in Europe.
Maire works at the Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information, Technology (ECIT) at Queen's University, Belfast. She is a lecturer and Royal Academy of Engineering Research Fellow, leading a research team of PhD students and research Fellows at ECIT who are looking at online security. During her time at ECIT, Maire has secured £400,000 of funding to support her current research.
The Young Woman Engineer of the Year Award is the most prestigious honour of its kind in the UK and attracts prominent supporters who share with the IET a concern that only 8% per cent of the UK's engineers are women.

Songs for Amnesty International
A concert bringing together 9 of Ireland's best singer/songwriters, in support of Amnesty International will take place on Friday 24th November at 7.30pm at Café Blend, The High Road, Letterkenny in aid of Amnesty International. The evening will raise awareness about some of Amnesty's ongoing work and campaigns including the continued abuses of human rights in the Darfur region of Sudan, the state of mental health provision in Ireland and their yearly 16 days of action on violence against women campaign which is launched the following day.
The musicians on the night will include Donegal based Mickey Harte, Richard Gilpin and Dublin based songwriter Maggie Khiane. There will also be opportunity to find out more about the work of Amnesty International. The night is free but there will be opportunity to make a donation.
The Letterkenny branch of Amnesty International meets at the Church of the Irish Martyrs in Letterkenny usually on the first Tuesday of the month at 8pm.

Breithlá Shona Donegal on the Net!
Inniu tá Dún na ag céiliúradh an 72ú Eagrán de chuid an Nuachtlitir Leictreonacha (r-phost [email protected]). Le níos mó ná 5000 duine cláraithe is í Nuachtlitir Donegal on the Net an phríomhsheirbhís eolais do phobal Thírchonaill ar líne. Ní amháin go bhfuil an seirbhís leictreonach ag freastal ar lucht na thír eolas anseo in Éirinn, tá daoine cláraithe linn ar fud an an domhain chomh maith.

Holiday Houses and Cottages available for Rent in Donegal

Heritage Events
Donegal County Council Heritage Office is organising two free heritage seminars and workshops on the conservation of traditional field boundaries. The Hedgerow seminar and workshop will take place in the former Carnowen National School at Carnowen Crossroads on Saturday, December 2nd and the stone walls seminar and workshop will take place in Oideas Gael in Glencolmcille on Tuesday, December 5th.
Traditional field boundaries are directly linked to several aspects of heritage defined under the Heritage Act of 1995 such as landscape, architectural heritage, geology, flora, fauna and wildlife habitat. The County Donegal Development Plan (2006-2012), which came into effect in August, contains a clear commitment to the conservation of stone walls, hedgerows and trees. The seminars and workshops (which include an information pack and a light lunch) are funded by The Heritage Council and Donegal County Council. A variety of topics relating to the conservation of traditional field boundaries will be addressed by Joseph Gallagher, Donegal's Heritge Officer.
Guest speakers include David Hickie, editor of the 'Irish Hedgerows' book; Anja Murray, An Taisce; Steven Meyen, Teagasc; and Stuart Dunlop, manager of the 'Donegal Hedgerow' website. The hedgerow workshop will be conducted in the afternoon just a short walk from the seminar venue in Carnowen.
The stone wall seminar will cover issues such as farming systems and the emergence of stone walls, the geology of stone walls, the flora and fauna associated with them and the building, repair and conservation of stone walls.
Guest speakers include Dr. Jonathan Bell, former director of the Ulster Folk & Transport Museum; Ralph Sheppard, Donegal Biodiversity Project and James Conliffe, Department of Earth & Ocean Sciences, National University of Ireland, Galway. Patrick McAfee, stonemason and author of 'Irish Stone Walls', will also give a guest presentation and will conduct the stone walls workshop in the afternoon at a venue just a short walk from the seminar venue in Glencolmcille.
The seminars and workshops are free but booking is essential. Seminar brochures and booking forms will be available in all libraries, public service centres and on the council website at later this week. You can also book your place at the seminars and workshops by telephone at (074) 912 1968 or by e-mail at Hertiage Seminars. A wonderful web site dedicated to nature in the Inishowen peninsula can be accessed at: Inishowen Wildlife Club where those who are interested in bird watching can get weekly updates on our seasonal visitors.

Editor's Note
The January, February and August to November Newsletters have not appeared in 2006 due to the Editor, Patricia Sharkey, being in hospital as a result of a road traffic accident in Donegal in early January.
Patricia hopes to resume the monthly Newsletters as soon as possible and would like to thank the many online readers and listeners who sent cards and flowers after her accident and to wish all Donegal on the Net News readers a Happy Holiday and a Peaceful, Safe and Healthy New Year.

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