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Extensions to local schools


Extensions to three local schools have been approved by the Department of Education. Approval has been provided to St. Coman’s Wood NS in Roscommon Town; Colaiste Chiarain, Summerhill, Athlone; and St. Mary’s National School, Strokestown.

  The works at both St. Coman’s Wood and St. Mary’s NS will include classroom and toilet facilities while an ASD class will be provided at Colaiste Chiarain in Summerhill.

  Minister Denis Naughten confirmed the news, stating: “This investment will increase capacity and improve the facilities in all three schools and I want to acknowledge the work put in by the Board of Management and Principal of each school in securing this investment”.

Fine Gael Senators Frank Feighan and Maura Hopkins welcomed the news.


Fr Gerry O’Rourke honoured in San Francisco




Roscommon-born priest, Fr. Gerry O’Rourke, was honoured at the Irish Consulate in San Francisco last month for his contribution to the advancement of peace and reconciliation on the island of Ireland and to the empowerment of leaders of faith communities.

  The Ballyfarnon native, who spent most of his childhood in Roscommon town, was honoured by the Consul General of Ireland, Robert O’Driscoll, and the Mastery Foundation at a reception on February 16th.

  The Mastery Foundation has worked for the past two decades in the area of reconciliation in Northern Ireland. Executive Director of the foundation, Ann Overton read a number of testimonials from community leaders in Northern Ireland who have been touched by the work of the Mastery Foundation and by Fr. Gerry’s contribution.

  Ms. Overton also read a letter from Roscommon town parish priest, Fr. John Cullen, who spoke about the positive effect Fr. Gerry had had on his own work.

  Following further tributes from the Consul General, Robert O’Driscoll, and Reverend Patricia McBride from Newry, Fr. Gerry himself had the final word of the evening, recounting his journey from the football fields of Ballyfarnon in Roscommon to being celebrated at the Irish Consulate in San Francisco.


Celebrating International Women’s Day 2018



Over 120 women from around Co. Roscommon united with Roscommon Women’s Network on March 8th and joined in the global celebration of women’s social, political and cultural achievements from the past and present and to discuss what needs to be done to achieve full gender equality.

  The event, which was staged in Gleeson’s in Roscommon town, took the form of a talk show with the focus of celebrations for this year’s event being the 100th anniversary of Irish women winning the right to vote in 1918. The talk show was hosted by Christina McHugh, Editor of the Roscommon Herald.

  Tara Farrell, Chairperson of RWN, welcomed the large audience to “a celebration, and a reflection of the fantastic work that is being done by women in County Roscommon”.

  The audience then heard from a number of local women including Senator Maura Hopkins, Cllr. Orla Leyden, Cllr. Kathleen Shanagher, members of the Roscommon Manifesto group, local businesswomen, members of the RWN Intercultural Project, RWN Project Development worker, Maria Harris and special guest, Sharon Mannion, an actress and comedian from Castleplunkett.

  Cathaoirleach of Roscommon County Council Cllr. Orla Leyden praised the work of Roscommon Women’s Network.

  Music and dance was provided on the day by a Slovakian family band and by Castlerea Community School’s Transition Year students.

Meeting on Friday over Mental Health review


Roscommon Oireachtas members are due to meet with Tony Canavan of the HSE tomorrow (Friday) to discuss the external review into mental health services in County Roscommon. Fianna Fáil TD Eugene Murphy says there had been an inexcusable delay in the implementation of the key recommendations of the review.  Deputy Murphy raised the matter under Leader’s Questions in the Dáil last week.

  “In the Programme for Government a commitment was made to improve mental health services in this country. An independent report was carried out on mental health services in County Roscommon. As we all know, it was a damning report. Deputy Murphy sought an assurance from Tánaiste Simon Coveney that he will follow up this matter with his colleagues.



News…at a glance - March 23rd



RSPCA Volunteer Information Day

Roscommon Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals are having at Volunteer Information Day at Gleeson’s Townhouse & Restaurant in Roscommon town on Saturday, 24th of March 2018 from 11 am to 2 pm.

  Come along and see what we are about and what you can do to help. Everyone is welcome and there will be lots of opportunities for people to volunteer with us.


Glinsk Good Friday Cancer Walk


The annual Glinsk 10k Walk in aid of the Irish Cancer Society’s Daffodil Day fund takes place on Good Friday, March 30th. The walk will commence at Glinsk NS at 5 pm.

  Each year we remember the people who have sadly passed away from cancer but this year we remember in a special way Sharon Carroll who lost her battle to cancer in September 2017, aged 26. Sharon was an inspirational lady who was first diagnosed with cancer at age 21. She was a loyal supporter of our walk and was guest at the launch last year.

  Thank you to Anne Marie and the Carroll family for giving us the honour of dedicating our walk this year in her memory.

  Walkers, cyclists, runners, pram pushers and pets are all welcome. Donations can be made on the day.

  For further information, contact 087-9349400. We look forward to welcoming you to the Curley residence for refreshments.


Talking about the bees…


Michael Bell will make a presentation entitled ‘Helping Bees and other pollinators in our Gardens’ in Kilteevan Community Centre on Saturday, 24th of March at 11 am. Everyone welcome.


Public forum on 8th Amendment


A public forum entitled ‘Doctors and Nurses – A Frontline Perspective on the forthcoming Referendum on the 8th Amendment’ will be held in Hannon’s Hotel, Roscommon on Tuesday, 27th of March at 8 pm. Questions will be answered by practitioners in healthcare. All are welcome. Light refreshments. For more information, call Mary on 086-8136365.



Feighan hails jobs growth in West


Senator Frank Feighan has claimed that 5,600 new jobs were created in the region covering Roscommon, Galway and Mayo over the last year.

  He said: “Labour Force Survey data published by the CSO shows continued strong momentum in the labour market with robust jobs growth across the country, benefitting families and strengthening communities here in this region”.

  Senator Feighan continued: “These figures show that the number at work (in this region) continues to expand, with additional jobs created over the year to the fourth quarter of 2017.

  “For last year as a whole, total employment growth was 2.9 per cent. There are 66,800 more people at work since this time last year. Our enterprise-based economy is now creating over 1000 jobs a week”.

Murphy anger at underspend



Over €5m of funding, prepaid to local authorities under the CLÁR Scheme, the Rural Recreation Scheme, the Town and Village Renewal Scheme and the REDZ Scheme in 2016, has still not been spent, with more than €360,000 of an underspend in counties Roscommon and Galway, according to Fianna Fáil TD Eugene Murphy.

  He says there’s been an underspend of €269,958 in Co. Galway over the last two years while there has been an underspend of €94,165 in Co. Roscommon.  

  The TD said: “Minister Michael Ring and his Department need to free up the kind of red tape issues which drag out the application process for many community groups and simplify the process of securing funding”.


Eggs-citing! It’s time to enter the Easter Parade!



The Roscommon Town Easter Parade is almost upon us and organisers are reminding everyone planning to take part to send in their entry forms as soon as possible.  

  While there’s no fooling some, the April 1st date should provide lots of inspiration for an array of colour, creativity and comedy in this much-loved community event.  

  There will be awards in the usual categories: Community, Commercial, Most Entertaining, and Best Overall, while the Shop Window Display section enables the business community to showcase the town at its seasonal Easter best.  

  The official entry form is published in this week’s Roscommon People (below, right) and can be downloaded from the parade’s social media and on www.roscommoneasterparade.com or by email from This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Appeal for volunteers

The parade continues to grow in popularity and participation and organisers have issued a call for additional volunteers to help marshal on the day.  Anyone interested in lending a hand on Easter Sunday is asked to contact Chairman John Doorly on 086-8115338.


Martin puts boot in on Naughten!






Minister 'all at sea' over broadband 


Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin addressed a number of issues during his visit to Ballinasloe and south Roscommon earlier this week including the need to “rebalance the country” and the unlikely possibility of a General Election happening soon.

  Deputy Micheál Martin said Minister for Communications Denis Naughten “was at sea” when it came to the roll-out of broadband before adding that the current Government had forgotten about rural Ireland.

  The opposition party leader said that broadband was “more important than roadways for rural Ireland” and slammed the Government’s failure to deliver high-speed broadband nationwide.

  “For me the big story in rural Ireland is broadband. It’s been a colossal failure of Fine Gael in government and I think Minister Naughten is at sea in relation to it as well nationally.

  “It’s a great enabler and the key to the modern economy and if we really want to resuscitate and sustain rural Ireland and towns in rural Ireland then the state has to become directly involved and provide broadband. It is even more important than roadways at this stage in terms of the capacity of small businesses, sole traders and individuals to earn income and to set up their companies.

  “We know that that some international companies would employ people in their homes if there was high-speed broadband connectivity,” he said.

  Deputy Martin also questioned the current Government’s commitment to rural Ireland.

  “There is no doubt (that the Government has forgotten about rural Ireland). You walk around Dublin and the Dáil there and then you go to Boyle, Tubbercurry, Ballinasloe and they’re two different worlds”.

  Deputy Martin said more needs to be done in terms of bringing industry to rural Ireland and cited high commercial rates and a lack of high-speed broadband as two obstacles to this.

  “There needs to be a national policy of saying ‘we need to rebalance the country’. The quality of life in our cities is eroding, it’s impossible to rent, and it’s impossible to buy a house if you’re a young couple. We need to be selling a better picture, or package if you like, in rural Ireland”.

  As for the possibility of a General Election this year, the Fianna Fáil leader said his party was committed to the confidence and supply agreement but “unhappy with housing and health”.






Martin on Kilduff: ‘We respect his decision and wish him well’





Micheál Martin refused to be drawn on the circumstances surrounding Cllr. Paddy Kilduff’s February decision to quit Fianna Fáil after 52 years in the party. He did, however, refute any criticism of the party’s democratic process at grassroots level after Kilduff had claimed that the party had been “taken over by a cadre of unelected yet powerful administrators who manipulate party structures, systems and rules”.

  “I don’t accept that at all. To be fair, Paddy was selected by Fianna Fáil councillors as the chairman of Roscommon County Council and was happy to accept that at the time.

  “In the aftermath of that I think he has articulated his views in terms of an issue which was investigated professionally and comprehensively by the party.

  “It’s an issue that caused a lot of stress and tension all round and I’ve nothing more to add to that”.

  He added that Cllr. Kilduff had chosen to leave the party on his own volition and that Fianna Fáil “respected his decision and wished him well”.


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