Friday 29 January 2016

Sharon Shannon & Alan Connor playing The Woodchoppers on Bosca Ceoil

Sharon Shannon, on fiddle for a change, with Alan Connor playing The Woodchoppers on TG4's Bosca Ceoil. Posted on Youtube on the 18th of January 2016 by webfilmmager.

Eoin O'Neill and friends - traditional music from Ennis

Eoin O'Neill and friends playing in Cruises' Bar, Ennis, County Clare. Posted on Youtube on the 26th of January 2016 by Connemara Baby.

Kayaking near Cliffs of Moher, January 2016 & June 2014

"Bumpy day on the water near Hags Head [at the Cliffs of Moher]. Explored some caves and took a surprise dip near the end of the day. Cracking day all the same." Posted on Youtube on the 19th of January 2016 by David Maher.

Contrast the video above with this one taken in June 2014:

"Sea kayaking under the Cliffs of Moher Ireland." Posted on Youtube on the 17th of June 2014 by David Horkan.

Gold Find in Feakle by Paddy O'Malley

Paddy O'Malley tells Cuimhneamh an Chláir about a gold find in Feakle, County Clare. Posted on Youtube on the 4th of January 2016 by Cuimhneamh an Chláir.

High Waves at Lahinch, January 2016

"High Tide at 6am January 26th 2016 in Lahinch, County Clare, with the waves breaking over the battlements." Posted on Youtube on the 26th of January 2016 by michael vaughan.

High Seas Early Morning in Lahinch, January 2016:

"Very Early High Tide at Lahinch a little grainy - shot in darkness at high ISO." Posted on Youtube on the 26th of January 2016 by michael vaughan.

The Higgs Mechanism Explained

"What is the Higgs field and why is it a fundamental part of our universe?" Posted on Youtube on the 16th of December 2015 by PBS Space Time.

€3m Capital Grant for new County Library in Ennis

Clare County Council has been allocated a €3 million capital grant towards the cost of the proposed new flagship County Library project in Ennis.

The announcement was made in Dublin today (Wednesday, 27 January 2016) by the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Mr. Alan Kelly, under the Capital Funding Programme for Public Libraries.

Clare County Council says the proposed new library building and the adjoining glór facility at The Causeway Link will combine as the Clare Cultural Centre.

The capital grant announced today is in addition to the €1 million in EU funding received last week from the Southern Regional Assembly’s Operational Programme 2014-2020.

Cllr James Breen, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, in welcoming today's announcement, said, "The development of a new County Library facility has long been sought after by the Council and its past and present Elected Members. This capital grant allocation effectively gives the green light for design work to begin on the facility."

"This is a landmark day for the delivery of cultural services in County Clare and I look forward to seeing this project progressing. It is very fitting that this announcement takes place in a year that sees Ennis hosting Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann and Clare County Council's leading of a yearlong programme that promotes Clare as a County of Culture," added the Cathaoirleach.

Tom Coughlan, Chief Executive of Clare County Council said the proposed €8.5 million County Library will locate three separate library services together in one building "with a focus on community cohesion, cultural integration and support to the economic and social activity of the town."

Mr Coughlan explained, "The Council will now seek to fund the balance of €4.5 million of the overall cost of the project from its own resources which underlines the Council’s ongoing commitment to provide improved facilities and infrastructure. A design team has been appointed to progress the design and planning phases of the project, while the Council anticipates that contractors will be on site by early 2017. The construction period is expected to take approximately 18 months."

Thursday 21 January 2016

Events at Glenwood and Kilkishen kickstart 1916 Commemorations in Clare

Pictured above is Clr James Breen, Mayor of Clare, officially unveiling the commemorative plaque to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Rising and the 95th Anniversary of the 1921 Glenwood Ambush at the Glenwood Memorial Site on Sunday 17th January2016.

Image above shows Dr Tomás Mac Conmara giving a talk on 1916 at the Kilkishen Cultural Centre, which was followed by a showing of Mise Eire, on Friday 15th January 2016.

Tuesday 19 January 2016

Clare Museum seeks to expand its collection

Clare Museum in Ennis is seeking donations of items to expand its collection and to achieve greater representation of the lives of people in Clare for future generations to enjoy.

In 2015, Clare Museum adopted a new Collection Policy to help the museum achieve its mission through focussed collecting. It also recognises the collection as the museum’s greatest resource.

According to the policy, Clare Museum will collect items that exist in or can be provenanced to County Clare. For example, in this Decade of Centenaries items relating to Clare during the revolutionary period of a century ago, the First World War or the Spanish Flu of 1918/1919 would be very welcome.

However, items from more recent decades are also required. A survey of museum visitors conducted recently has highlighted a gap in the museum collection: the museum lacks everyday items from the 1960s to the turn of the century that many of our visitors remember and would like to show their children or grandchildren when on a visit to the museum.

Items of interest could also include functional equipment such as old phones, including mobile phones, calculators and other information technology, though they would need to be in good condition. Also, the museum collection is particularly short of children’s toys from days gone by.

The museum is also keen to be representative of local communities often overlooked in collections, including objects relating to the everyday lives of women and children, the travelling community, immigrants, and the disabled.

The profile of the County has changed in recent years, and now a large number of people in Clare come from or have a cultural connection to other countries. It is important to represent the cultural diversity of Clare in order to meet our socially inclusive mission. Items and ephemera reflecting the lives in Clare of these immigrant communities would also be welcome.

The Collection Policy is available on the museum’s website at for the consultation of anyone interested in donating an item. For further information, museum curator John Rattigan can be contacted at 065-6823383 or at

Monday 18 January 2016

Asking for It by Louise O’ Neill named the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book of the Year 2015

Louise O’ Neill’s second novel, Asking for It was voted the Bord Gáis Energy Book of the Year for 2015 and was chosen by public vote from the overall list of category winners. It was one of the most talked about books in literature last year. The story, about an horrific assault on fifth year student Emma O’Donovan from a fictional small town in County Cork is harrowing to say the least, but even more difficult for the reader to accept is the treatment of Emma afterwards by the local community.

The novel is split into two parts, before and after the assault. Emma is an unlikeable heroine who is sarcastic and cruel to her peers and a constant attention-seeker with distasteful traits borne of low self-esteem and a craving to be admired. Yet all this is somewhat insignificant for the reader when trying to come to terms with the horrendous ordeal of her gang rape, after which she is dumped like a sack of rubbish on her parents’ doorstep the following day.

Added to the atrocity is the fact that countless photographs posted online are testimony to what happened to Emma. And even worse is the defense of her attackers by the church, the gardai and almost anyone in the community who has a comment to make about her ordeal in its aftermath.

Known in the trade as a crossover novel, Asking For It is a book for older teenagers and adults. Just as in her previous much acclaimed book, Only Ever Yours, O’Neill passes no judgement. It’s up to the reader to think about the moral issues in this thought-provoking novel. Common themes appear in both: women’s appearance, self-esteem, and how they are viewed by men are central.

Nobody comes out of Asking For It looking good. It is frighteningly realistic with no happy ever after, but will without doubt stay in readers’ minds long after reading it.

Friday 15 January 2016

Cherish the Ladies Perform Lord Inchiquin Medley in Miltown Malbay

"Track from Cherish the Ladies Christmas in Ireland CD: Lord Inchiquin / Sweeney’s Dream / Johnny Henry’s / Thady Casey’s Fancy recorded in Lynch's Friel's in Miltown Malbay, County Clare featuring Joanie Madden (flute, whistle), Mary Coogan (guitar), Mirella Murray (accordion), Kathleen Boyle (piano), Nollaig Casey (fiddle), Donnchadh Gough (bodhran)." Posted on Youtube on the 24th of December 2015 by cherishtheladies.

2015 Merriman Concert selection: "I Won't Be a Nun"

"Dedicated to the musical mothers of Clare - A musical excerpt from "Love and Marriage in the Musical Landscape of County Clare", Merriman Summer School lecture & concert by Prof Gearóid Ó hAllmhuráin (Concordia University, Montréal). Musicians: Dr Geraldine Cotter (piano), Dr Gearóid Ó hAllmhuráin (concertina), Bríd O'Gorman (flute), Joan Hanrahan (fiddle), Eimear Howley (fiddle *), Dr Tim Collins (concertina*), Tiarnán ÓhAllmhuráin (fiddle), and John Lynch (banjo *) * members of Kilfenora Ceili Band. Glor, Ennis County Clare, 15 August 2015." Posted on Youtube on the 28th o August 2015 by ClareMusic2000.

Clare battering steps - Aidan Vaughan

"Clare battering steps - Aidan Vaughan, dancer; music (Maid of Mount Cisco, reel) by Mick Mulcahy, accordion, Lousie Mulcahy, flute and Michelle Mulcahy, fiddle. Recorded at the old style step, sean nós and traditional set dancing concert at the 33rd Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy / Willie Clancy Summer School, 7th July 2005." Posted on Youtube on the 1st of June 2012 by ITMAVideos.

The MacNamaras of Ennistymon House by Tessie Hill

Tessie Hill being interviewed about the MacNamaras of Ennistymon House by Frances Madigan for Cuimhneamh an Chláir. Tessie was a very popular branch librarian in Ennistymon Library from 1962 to 2000. Posted on Youtube on the 4th of January 2016 by Cuimhneamh an Chláir.

Erasmus Trip to Cliffs of Moher and Galway

"Some memories of our Erasmus trip to the Cliffs of Moher and Galway." Posted on Youtube on the 22nd of November 2015 by Manon Grelaud.

Thursday 14 January 2016

Courthouse Gallery, Ennistymon, seeks submissions for exhibition program in 2017 and 2018

The Courthouse Gallery in Ennistymon is seeking submissions for their exhibition program in 2017 and 2018. The Courthouse Gallery features a main art gallery and a smaller Red Couch Space. The gallery is interested in exhibiting a wide range of visual art, including collaborations and multi-media projects for exhibition in both gallery spaces, and is interested to hear from emerging and professional artists based locally and nationwide.

Deadline for submission: Monday 29th February 2016

If you are interested in applying, please post your submission, including:

1. Artist’s CV
2. Brief artist’s statement
3. Description of proposed show,
4. 8-10 JPEG images and/or MPG file on CD

Materials cannot be returned. Online submissions not accepted.

Please send submissions to:
Trudi van der Elsen - Curator,
The Courthouse Gallery,
Parliament Street,
County Clare.

For more information and/or a floor plan please contact:
T: 065-7071630

The Courthouse Gallery is supported by Clare County Council

County Clare Trazz Experience - musicians wanted

Music Generation Clare has announced a very exciting new opportunity for secondary school students: the inaugural County Clare Trazz Experience, where traditional music will be fused with elements of jazz, for a truly unique sound.

Expressions of interest are currently being accepted from secondary school musicians of any instrument and any genre of music. Led by Pádraig Rynne, participants in the project will form part of a large ensemble music experience, with rehearsals commencing on 17 January and culminating in a performance, weekend of May 27th, 2016.

Rehearsals will take place on ten Sunday mornings, from 10am – 1pm in An Teach Ceoil, Sráid an Teampaill, Ennistymon. The rehearsal schedule is as follows:

17 and 24 January 2016
7 and 21 February 2016
6 and 13 March 2016
10 and 24 April 2016
8 and 22 May (performance to follow the final rehearsal on 22 May)

Please note that all interested candidates must be able to read music.

To apply, please fill out the expression of interest form and return either by email or post to:


Mail to:
Music Generation Clare,
Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board,
Station Road, Ennis.

A participation fee of €75 for 10 rehearsals and performance applies.

For further information about this and other exciting new musical experiences contact:

Emer O'Flaherty, Development Officer
Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board, Station Road, Ennis, County Clare
t: +353 65 682 8107 & e: Click here for the expression of interest form...

Wednesday 13 January 2016

Setanta Sports Book of the Year - new Irish sports book award

Dub Sub Confidential by John Leonard has won the inaugural Setanta Sports Book of the Year award. The book is an honest retelling of Leonard’s experience as Stephen Cluxton's understudy on the Dublin football team and deals with the aftermath of abuse and battles with drug and alcohol addiction.

Two other GAA books made the shortlist. Until Victory Always, Donegal football manager Jim McGuinness’ memoir was presented with the Sports Book of the Year award at the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards 2015. Relentless, Mary White’s account of the Cork Ladies Footballers and their remarkable dominance, also made the shortlist.

The other shortlisted titles for the Setanta Sports Book of the Year were No Borders: Playing Rugby for Ireland, by Tom English, and historian Paul Rouse’s study, Sport and Ireland.

Leonard received a €1,500 cash prize, a specially commissioned trophy, and €10,000 worth of TV advertising on Setanta Sports.

Tuesday 12 January 2016

Pop-Up Garden Community Challenge at Clare Garden Festival 2016

The Pop-Up Garden Community Challenge at Clare Garden Festival 2016 asks groups/organisation to create a garden based on their interpretation of the theme ‘Upcycling and Composting in my Garden’ to be displayed and judged at Clare Garden Festival on 24th April 2016.

FIRST PRIZE: €400 proudly supported by Clare Co Council Environment Section; we aim to source further prizes for this competition. Karen Foley, Environmental Awareness Officer with Clare Co Co Environment section explains: “The Pop-Up Garden community challenge at Clare Garden Festival provides a great opportunity for groups of all ages to engage in a communal project showcasing their gardening skills and hopefully coming out on top to receive a cash prize for their group. Clare County Council Environment section are delighted to support this competition again in 2016.” She continued by saying: “The theme for 2016 called ‘Upcycling and Composting in my Garden’ allows for plenty of application for the competitors making for great learning and idea generation and transferral for viewers. Examples of this could include the use of household and garden wastes like wood and plastics in the garden and composting solutions for small gardens.”

The competition is now open for application and we entries will be taken up until 12th February 2016. After that the sketching and building of the Gardens begins. See more details, application form and Q&A also on

Image above shows the winner of the Community PopUp Garden 2015.

A Poem for Ireland Poetry Competition – Schools and Libraries commemorate 1916

The Department of Education and Skills, the public library service and Libraries Development, Local Government Management Agency are holding the A Poem for Ireland Poetry Competition for post-primary schools, as part of the commemoration events for Ireland 2016.

A Poem for Ireland Competition Format

Round One: School Competition, 6th January 2016 – 29th February 2016
Students in each post-primary school year are invited to submit a poem on Ireland past and / or present for the competition to the Year Head before the 29th of February 2016. Poems may be submitted in English or Irish and must be original works.

29th February - 4th March 2016: The winning entry for each year should be submitted to each local library branch (see for branch details) by the 4th of March 2016.

Round Two: County Competition, March 2016
A judging panel set up by the local library service will adjudicate on all schools’ winning entries. A county winner will be selected and announced at an awards event hosted by the public library service.

Round Three: National Final, April 2016
County winners will be reviewed by a national panel of judges set up by Libraries Development, LGMA and shortlisted to eight national finalists. A national final will take place in April 2016. The national panel of judges will assess each of the eight entries on the day and will award a national winner. A national dignitary will attend and present the prize to the overall winner.

All prizes at local level will be determined by each local authority individually.

National Winner: €1,000
National Runner Up: €500
National 3rd prize: €250
National Finalists: €50 vouchers

All finalist entries will be uploaded to, and For competition posters, further information, terms and conditions, see

Thursday 7 January 2016

Costa Book awards - winners announced

The 2015 Costa Book Awards have been announced. Five category awards have been presented from which the overall Costa Book of the Year will be selected on January 20th.

A God In Ruins by Kate Atkinson has been awarded the Costa Novel Award. Atkinson previously won the award in 2013 for her novel, Life After Life and A God in Ruins is described as a companion piece rather than a sequel to the previous book. Anne Enright had been shortlisted in this category for her Irish family study The Green Road.

Andrew Michael Hurley has won the Costa First Novel Award for his gothic horror The Loney. Considered to be at the forefront of a new wave of British gothic fiction, the judges agreed that “this book is as close to the perfect first novel as you can get”. Sara Baume’s acclaimed one-man-and-his-dog chronicle Spill Simmer Falter Wither had been shortlisted for the award.

Andrea Wulf won the Biography Award for The Invention of Nature: The Adventures of Alexander Von Humboldt, The Lost Hero of Science, a book about a largely unknown scientist who inspired generations of thinkers and writers and has more things named after him than anyone who has ever lived.

Scottish poet Don Paterson was awarded the Costa Poetry Award for his collection of sonnets addressed to friends and strangers, the living and the dead and the author himself, dealing with contradiction, the dream world and the divided self.

The Children's Book Award went to Frances Hardinge for her dark Victorian murder-mystery The Lie Tree, a book that will grip readers of all ages with its blend of history and fantasy.

All winners of Costa Book Awards receive £5000 and will compete for the title of Costa Book of the Year.

Tuesday 5 January 2016

The Story of Clare’s Hurling Champions of 1914 published

Since May 2015, Clare Museum has been holding a temporary exhibition to commemorate the Senior and Junior Clare Hurling teams that won their respective All-Ireland championships in 1914. The exhibition is based on objects in the museum’s reserve collection.

As an educational support for the exhibition, the museum has recently produced a booklet which explores the experience of those associated with these hurling teams in the contexts of the events being marked during the Decade of Centenaries.

Included in the publication are photographs of items related not only to the All-Ireland Hurling Championship of 1914, but also objects and documents connected to the First World War, the War of Independence and Civil War.

Researched by Dr Tomás MacConmara and designed by museum volunteer Karen Dunn, the booklet contains original research and will be of particular interest to those interested in local history.

Limited numbers of the booklet are available to the public free of charge at Clare Museum, Arthur’s Row, Ennis and are available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

The publication can also be viewed online at

The image above shows the ball used when Clare won its first All-Ireland Hurling title against Laois on 18th October 1914. See

Monday 4 January 2016

Cuimhneamh an Chláir on Clare FM on the 6th, 7th and 8th January

Cuimhneamh an Chláir recently asked Paula Carroll to listen to the stories they have gathered and to compile radio features showcasing the rich oral heritage of County Clare. Over the next few days you can hear Paula’s selections on Morning Focus on Clare FM between 11am and 12pm.

Tuesday 6th January 2016:
WOMEN’S WORK: In this piece we hear about Womens’ Work - working on the bog, growing vegetables, tending fowl, drawing water, raising children. The voices you will hear are Susan Williams from Kilfenora, Teresa Flynn from Mountshannon, Nora Canavan from Doolin (who at 107 is one of Clare's oldest citizens).

Wednesday 7th January 2016:
TRANSPORT: In this piece we hear about how people travelled - from the first car in Quin, to the first sighting of an aeroplane over Scariff, to the trusty old High Nellie. You will hear the voices of John Hastings from Quin, Nora Canavan from Doolin, Margaret Waterstone from Mountshannon, and Susan Williams from Kilfenora.

Thursday 8th January 2016:
CALENDAR CUSTOMS: In this day’s piece we hear about calendar customs throughout the year - from St. Brigids Day traditions in February right through to Christmas. You will hear the voices of Nan Aherne from Ennistymon, Paddy Tuohy from Whitegate, Frank Davis from Ennistymon, Teresa Flynn from Mountshanon, and Peggy Hogan from Feakle.