Housing Update – June 30th

Every Wednesday, I will update you here on the social houses that are available via Clare County Council.

As always, it is vital that you register with Clare County Council’s housing section for their Choice Based Letting site, where you are able to register your interest for a property. You can contact the housing section on (065) 6821616.

Please note: Some weeks, no properties come online and therefore there will be no housing update.


Address: 6 Pairc na Coille, Drumbiggle Road, Ennis, Co. Clare

Details: 2-bed, semi-detached

Two bed; 1 en-suite; Level access shower/bathroom; Kitchen/dining area; Sitting room; Gas heating; Parking to front



Address: 9 Marian Estate, Kilkee, Co.Clare

Details: 1-bed, semi-detached

1 bed; 1 en-suite; Level access bathroom; Kitchen/dining area; Sitting room; Air to water heating; Undesignated parking to front; Ramp entrance at front; Rear garden



Address: 46 Pound Street, Kilrush, Co.Clare

Details: 2-bed, bungalow

Mid-terraced; Level access bathroom; Kitchen/dining area; Sitting room; Stove with back boiler heating; Undesignated parking to front; Rear garden

Further funding granted to complete EuroVelo 1 cycling route

  • Additional €500,000 granted
  • Route will now go from Donegal to Wexford


Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Tourism and Aviation Cathal Crowe has welcomed the announcement of a further €500,000 to complete signage for the Irish leg of the EuroVelo cycling route.

The European-wide cycling tour already takes in Donegal, Leitrim, Sligo, Mayo, Wexford and Waterford along with Clare and now, thanks to today’s funding announcement, will also traverse Co. Cork.

The Irish leg marks EuroVelo Route 1 – and is one of 19 routes across the continent, aimed at luring in cyclists to these countries and locations.

“EuroVelo 1 will really showcase Clare to the world at large, so I’m thrilled to see that this grant has been allocated to include Cork, thereby extending not only the length of the route here but also the possibilities for Irish tourism,” said Deputy Crowe.

“A quick Google search will show you that these routes cover some of the most breath-taking scenery in Europe in every country they take in – and I may be biased, but I truly believe that the Irish leg is up there with the best.

“The funding announced today will ensure that the Cork segment is fully signposted, thereby making sure that those who take the journey to complete the Irish section can do so safely.

“I also think the extension of the route will add to my argument that we, as a government, should be targeting the Tour de France with the aim of hosting a stage of this down the line.

“A combination of the Wild Atlantic Way and the EuroVelo 1 route could be used for the competition and this would, again, give us a magnificent chance to show our country off to the world.”


ESB Ardnacrusha Visitor Experience has tremendous potential for area

  • Feasibility study to be carried out into project
  • ESB plans to build on strong interest in facility


Clare Fianna Fáil TD Cathal Crowe has welcomed news that ESB is making moves to establish a world class tourism facility at Ardnacrusha Power Station.

A feasibility study is currently being undertaken, with a view to accessing funding under schemes such as the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, to allow it to be developed.

ESB currently runs a visitor experience in the power station from approximately May to September each year, with visitor numbers of just over 10,000 annually.

However, access to Ardnacrusha is limited – in general, ESB admits only non-commercial groups, which are booked in advance; tours can be provided only at set times on Mondays through Fridays.

Despite this, demand is high for the tours.

“As someone who’s got a huge interest in history, and in particular that of my locality, I really welcome this initiative on the part of the ESB,” said Deputy Crowe.

“At the time it was built a century ago, Ardnacrusha was declared one of the wonders of the engineering world and for the decades that followed its construction, people flocked in their droves to see it for themselves.

“It was a tourism destination in its own right.

“People would buy postcards in Barry’s Shop – which is still trading to this day – and send them home to their families.

“They would make day excursions on foot to the Ardnacrusha

“A lot of current and former employees of the ESB still live in the locality and they’ve been very generous over the years in facilitating school visits on the site.

“In more recent years, it has opened over the summer months to allow people come in and tour the facility.

“There’s currently a very small museum on the site run on a voluntary basis which is a great facility, but it is in need of modernising.

“I really hope the ESB push on with these plans – it would really improve the offering at Ardnacrusha and hopefully start to attract people back once again

“These days, there’s a huge emphasis on the STEM subjects in school – engineering, of course, being one of them.

“As a teacher, I think as many school classes as possible should visit this site and look at how, a century ago, the people of Ireland had the foresight to generate electricity from renewable means and that in the year 2021 we’ve almost gone full circle and we’re again becoming reliant on renewable forms of electricity.”


Aer Lingus needs to commit to Shannon Airport and stop exploiting taxpayer

  • Airline chief appears before Oireachtas committee
  • U-turn on closure of Shannon base unlikely


Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Tourism and Aviation Cathal Crowe is calling on Aer Lingus to stop exploiting the taxpayer and their Shannon Airport staff members.

It follows the appearance of senior Aer Lingus officials before the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Transport this morning, in which CEO Lynne Embleton said that while the airline is committed to connectivity from Shannon, there would be no consideration given to reverse the decision to permanently shut down the cabin crew base there.

“Aer Lingus’s decision to close the cabin crew base in Shannon Airport simply doesn’t make sense, despite what we were told today,” said Deputy Crowe.

“I’ve had staff members based out of Shannon tell me that it can cost up to €300,000 per annum to bus cabin crew of four down from Dublin, pay their overnight stay and travel allowances to staff flights, rather than have a few crew members based here in Shannon.

“I’ve called on Aer Lingus to reverse this decision but have been told that the decision is final.

“However, because of the taxpayer’s contribution to the running of the airline over the past 15 months, we need more than the empty promise of a commitment to connectivity.

“Today, I held up a redacted payslip from a Shannon worker to show Ms Embleton and her team.

“In a fortnight, this particular worker received just over €638 in salary – the government, in other words the taxpayer, paid €600 with Aer Lingus footing the remainder.

“The government has essentially paid the wage bill for Aer Lingus for 15 months and therefore there’s an onus on the airline to not treat their workers shoddily and to maintain basic connectivity in and out of the airport.

“While I welcome the fact that Ms Embleton has said that Aer Lingus is committed to ensuring connectivity at Shannon, there is a lot more at play.

“Workers in Shannon are facing job losses despite years of loyal service, whereas those based in Dublin Airport who might only be working with the company a year and a half are continuing to enjoy employment there.

“The bottom line is we need to see more solid commitment from Aer Lingus to Shannon Airport.

“The inefficiencies referred to by Aer Lingus in talking about the closure of the Shannon base, I don’t buy.

“Aer Lingus wanted all along to straighten some industrial relation stuff and have exploited the tax payer, who has footed their wage bill, by using Covid-19 to close this base and waiting until the eleventh hour to tell their loyal workers such.

“I will continue to liaise with Aer Lingus with a view to turning this decision around and I hope that we can engage in constructive discussions.”


Housing Update – June 23rd

Every Wednesday, I will update you here on the social houses that are available via Clare County Council.

As always, it is vital that you register with Clare County Council’s housing section for their Choice Based Letting site, where you are able to register your interest for a property. You can contact the housing section on (065) 6821616.

Please note: Some weeks, no properties come online and therefore there will be no housing update.


Address: 52 Garden View, Clarecastle, Co.Clare

Details: 3-bed, terraced

Kitchen/Dining area; Sitting Room; Main Bathroom – Shower in bath; Ensuite – Shower; Gas heating; Parking to front of the property; Rear garden; Private entrance



Address: 69 Cul na Greine, Shannon, Co. Clare

Details: 3-bed, semi-detached

Gas Central Heating with Open Fire (Not Suitable for Back Boiler); Kitchen/Dining; Sitting Room; Downstairs Toilet; Bathroom upstairs with shower in bath; Side Entrance; Front Driveway for parking; Rear Garden

N.B-  Please note applicants are not to access sites or properties. Many properties are under final stages of construction, or refurbishment and not accessible or safe for viewing

€194,000 in funding for Clare under Community Monuments Fund

  • Four projects to receive grants
  • Funding targets archaeological heritage projects


Fianna Fáil TD for Clare Cathal Crowe has welcomed the allocation of €193,935 to County Clare for four individual projects, under the Community Monuments Fund.

A total of €4.2 million is being rolled out nationally to fund 139 projects; up €1 million from last year, when the fund was first established.

The main aims of the CMF are the conservation, maintenance, protection and promotion of local monuments and historic sites.

“As an avid historian, I’m thrilled to see that four magnificent historic sites around Clare are receiving these grants,” said Deputy Crowe.

“Clonrush Burial Ground is the only Stream 1 project approved in Clare, with €30,351 awarded for essential repairs and capital works for the conservation and repair or archaeological monuments.

“Under Stream 2, which looks specifically at conservation management plans for archaeological monuments and public access, Kilkerren Battery Fort near Labasheeda has been granted €29,129; Templemaley Church and Burial Ground will receive €13,478 and a sum of €29,950 will go to Kilfenora Cathedral.

“Churches and burial grounds are hugely historical places where we, and the offspring of the diaspora the world over, can trace back our family heritage centuries.

“They are fascinating places to visit but too often can fall into disrepair so this funding for Kilfenora Cathedral, Templemaley church and burial ground and the burial ground at Clonrush is hugely welcome.

“Kilkerrin Battery Fort has a very different but equally interesting history.

“The structure was built between 1811 and 1814 by British forces, one of a half dozen dotted along the Shannon Estuary, as a means to repel a threatened invasion by Napoleonic forces.

“It remained in use for much of the 19th century and later fell into disrepair but since the 1980s, there have been efforts made to restore this 200-year-old structure.

“The sum of almost €30,000 will make a significant difference to these efforts by the community of Labasheeda.

“Two projects in Clare were sadly unsuccessful in their quest to secure CMF funding but I would encourage these and any other community that feels they could benefit from this fund to start work now on having all their ducks in a row for next year.

“I look forward to visiting each of the four successful applicants for 2021 and seeing what they do with their grants.”


Pyrite remedial scheme for Clare homeowners must be urgently developed

  • Scheme in place for Mayo and Donegal
  • Homeowners mounting demonstrations


Fianna Fáil TD for Clare Cathal Crowe says it is of the utmost importance that a remedial scheme for homeowners in this county impacted by pyrite and mica defective block issues be developed in as short a possible timeframe.

A demonstration is taking place in Ennis this afternoon, organised by homeowners across Clare who are calling for swift action to be taken to address the defective blockwork in their houses, causing significant issues to the structural integrity of their homes.

Nationally, a larger demonstration is planned for Dublin tomorrow also.

“Due to my commitment to attend my West Clare clinics today, I was unable to attend the rally organised by homeowners in Ennis this afternoon,” said Deputy Crowe.

“I have, however, arranged to meet them when they attend a rally in Dublin tomorrow.

“I’ve been speaking with Minister Darragh O’Brien on a number of occasions about the need to advance a pyrite and defective block remediation scheme for Co. Clare.

“There is already a scheme operational in Donegal and Mayo and whilst these schemes may, in part, form a template for a scheme in Clare, we need to also look at some of the shortcomings that people in these counties have identified.

“In Mayo and Donegal, it looks as if 40% of the homes that have pyrite blocks in them may need to be demolished.

“Some say this is even a conservative estimate and that many more in fact will need to be levelled also.

“Homeowners have an option of replacing the external and internal blockwork of the house and there’s also a full demolition option but in Donegal and Mayo, homeowners have identified other areas in which they have incurred costs, such as replacing windows and kitchens that fall beyond the remit of the grant scheme

“Form a Clare perspective, it’s essential we that we get a scheme underway in the quickest possible time.

“I have been to visit several of the effected homes, and I have seen first-hand gaps in blockwork that I was able to fit my hand through.

“Some of the buildings I have seen look to be very structurally unsound and every year of a delay, results in a further decay of the blockwork putting the families living in these homes at risk.

“Minister O’Brien has met with homeowners from Donegal and Mayo in recent weeks and I’m now in the process of trying to set up a meeting between him and the Clare Pyrite Group.

“I also suspect that there is a public building in our county that also has defective blocks within its structure and I am urging the council to immediately undertake testing to verify this.

“For anybody who has experienced the trauma of discovering that their home, which they have decades of mortgage repayments ahead of them for, is crumbling around them, this cannot be allowed to continue.”


Antigen testing must be considered for aviation sector after Stobart wind-down

  • Danger of other airlines following Stobart’s example
  • Antigen testing can boost sector


Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Tourism and Aviation Cathal Crowe is calling for assurances that antigen testing will be used as a viable alternative to PCR testing to allow the aviation sector get back up and running.

It follows the announcement by Stobart Air that it has ceased operations.

“In light of Stobart Air’s announcement, it is essential that urgent actions are taken to prevent other airlines from facing the same fate,” said Deputy Crowe

“Ireland now has a pathway back to a safe resumption of international travel and many people, myself included, look forward to flying this summer in the safe knowledge that other passengers on the plane would be Covid-free.

“Pre-departure testing at airports will ensure that travelling by air will, in all likelihood, be safer from a Covid perspective than travelling on buses, trains and other forms of public transport.

“It remains a huge concern, however, to all that work in the aviation sector that PCR testing may be a barrier to people flying.

“Many Irish people are used to buying a bargain basement air ticket from an airline but the cost of a PCR test, which can be anything up to €150, will make many international trips unviable this summer.

“A number of months ago, the government commissioned a report on antigen testing which was completed by Professor Mark Ferguson this report concluded that antigen was a safe and effective way of testing individuals and I think we now need to embrace it as a parallel testing to PCR testing.

“Antigen tests typically cos less than €10 and can give an accurate read within a half an hour – whereas a PCR test is usually within three days of flying.

“In this way, PCR tests can some way be likened to breathalysing a few hours before going to the pub – it doesn’t capture all of the relevant data.

“For this reason, I think it’s important that antigen tests are factored in as a cheaper and equally effective alternative.

“A family with two kids would face huge costs if they had to take PCR tests, where antigen testing would relieve this burden but also give airlines a glimmer of hope for the months ahead.”


Housing Update – June 9th

Every Wednesday, I will update you here on the social houses that are available via Clare County Council.

As always, it is vital that you register with Clare County Council’s housing section for their Choice Based Letting site, where you are able to register your interest for a property. You can contact the housing section on (065) 6821616.


Address: Dun na Mara, Doonbeg, Co. Clare

Details: 4-bed properties (2 available)

Kitchen/Dining; Sitting Room; 4 Bedrooms; 1 Ensuite; 1 Bathroom (With shower in bath); Downstairs toilet; Air to water heating ONLY (no chimney); Front/Back garden; Designated parking to outside property