Ballina

  • Ballina Fringe Festival will take place from July 6th until 15th running alongside Ballina’s famous Salmon Festival.

    Ballina and North Mayo have a proud heritage in the arts, and it’s rugged wild Atlantic landscape has inspired countless artists through the years.

    The inaugural Ballina Fringe Festival has a focus on how North Mayo, its landscape and heritage have set foundations for ambitious and creative arts in many media.

    Full festival details are available on www.ballinafringefestival.ie

  • Gardai in Ballina are advising business owners and traders to be on alert for counterfeit 20 euro notes.

    A number of the dud notes were tendered in shops in Ballina earlier today, and Gardai are advising those involved in retail to be on alert for the counterfeit notes - and check in particular for the hologram.

     

  • Gardai in Ballina are investigating what's described as “a serious incident” that occurred on the Killala Road, Ballina on Thursday night, or the early hours of last Friday morning (July 25/26th).

    An alleged sexual assault occurred on a woman aged in her mid thirties, and an aggravated burglary occurred at approximately 4am. 

    Gardai are appealing to anybody who may have witnessed anyone acting suspiciously or any car acting suspiciously in the area in the early hours of last Friday morning, particularly between 3 and 4am  to contact Ballina Garda station on 096 20560 or the Garda confidential Line at 1800 666 111.

     

  • Gardai in Ballina are investigating an alleged hit & run traffic collision last Friday morning.

    An elderly man was knocked down on Bury Street in the town between 9.40 and 9.50am on Friday morning last, 13th Sept.

    Gardai say the incident occurred at a busy time of the morning, and are asking any witnesses to come forward to assist in their investigation.

    Gardai are particularly interested in speaking with the driver of a truck who was at the scene at the time of the collision.

    Anyone with information is asked to contact Ballina Garda Station at 096 - 20560 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111.

     

  • Gardai in Ballina seized a significant quantity of cannabis yesterday.

    It followed a traffic checkpoint in the Slí Eachtra area of the town, and a follow-up search of a house in the Ballina area by local uniformed Gardai and members of the divisional drugs unit.

    Cannabis worth over €1,000 was seized, along with drugs paraphernalia and a sum of cash.

    One person was arrested, questioned, and later released with a file being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions.

    This is part of a major crackdown on drugs in the north Mayo region, which also saw cocaine being discovered in the Ross area of Killala on Saturday 16th March.

    In a planned operation by the Divisional Drugs Unit, two people were stopped and searched and a significant quantity of cocaine was recovered.

    Gardai say a file is being prepared for the DPP.

  • A 10-year old Ballina girl will be taking part in one of the most-watched TV programmes of the year next weekend.

    10-year old Alison McGrath from Ballina is one of the children chosen to take part in The Late Late Toy Show, which will be aired on Friday week 30th November on RTE One at 9.35 pm.

     

     

  • The number of vacant commercial units in Mayo has increased slightly in the past year.

    Figures released today by GeoDirectory show the commercial vacancy rate in Mayo increased by 0.4% to 16.6% in June - and is 3% higher than the national average.

    The top five counties to record the highest vacancy rates are all in Connacht, with Co Sligo topping the list at over 19%.

    One in four commercial properties in Ballina is vacant, as Ballina is the town in Mayo with the highest commercial vacancy, while Westport has the lowest rate at 12.3%.

     

     


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    A Mayo man has lost his appeal against his 5 year jail sentence for dangerous driving causing death.

    40 year old Declan Moran of Carrentrilla, Ballina had been drinking when he performed an illegal u-turn and killed oncoming motorcyclist Martin Wynne.

    It happened on the N26 at Ballinahaglish, Ballina in May 2016.

    Declan Moran fled the scene on foot and was arrested a few hours later and was found to be over the drink driving limit.

    The Court of Appeal said the 5 year sentence was entirely appropriate, given the accused has a previous conviction for drink-driving.

     

     

     

     

  • A Mayo man was seriously injured after being hit by a bus in Budapest last weekend.

    32-year old Michael Cuffe from Ballina travelled to the Hungarian capital last Friday with three friends for a weekend away, but just hours after he arrived he was struck by a bus.

    The Irish Independent reports that Michael suffered a number of  injuries, including broken bones in his neck and back, a broken collarbone and a triple leg fracture.

    His family are now fundraising to help bring Michael home for treatment.

    It’s understood a radiologist travelling on the bus gave him CPR and stabilised him until an ambulance arrived.

    Michael’s sister Naomi told the Independent that he will have to travel home on a spinal board, and as no commercial airline accommodates spinal boards, he will need an air ambulance.

    The family have set up a GoFundMe page to try and meet the costs of getting Michael back to Ireland.

    The GoFundMe page has raised more than €13,000 in less than 24 hours and Naomi said her family are blown away by people's generosity.

    For further details, or to make a donation, you can go online to www.gofundme.com/flymichaelcuffehome

     

  • A Ballina man, whose son died by suicide, has hit out at the pre-Christmas advertisements for cheap alcohol, as supermarkets vie with each other to see who can provide the best value.

     

    TV, radio, print and social media are currently running campaigns for cheap drink, accompanied by the advice to "enjoy alcohol responsibly".

     

    However, these three words will bring no comfort to children whose prospect of a happy Christmas will be shattered as a result of alcohol abuse in the home, or to families who have lost a loved one in situations where alcohol was a contributing factor.

     

    That's according to John Higgins from Ballina, whose son David died by suicide after a house party in March 2011.

     

    The inquest into David's death recorded a verdict of death by suicide, with alcohol a contributing factor.

     

    John Higgins believes the culture of cheap drink and house parties presents a danger for young people, and has again called for tighter regulation on the price of alcohol in supermarkets and off-licences.

     

    While the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018 provides for minimum unit pricing for drink, this section of the Act has not yet been implemented in Ireland, and he's calling on the Government to introduce this legislation as soon as possible, to prevent any more loss of life.

  • Ballina - Final Tally


    Duffy Mark Non-Party 1938
    Gill Kieran - FIne Gael  722
    Horkan Aileen - Fine Gael 536
    Loftus Michael - Fianna Fail 1310
    Moore Eamon - Fianna Fail 1102
    Munnelly Jarlath - Fine Gael 946
    Nolan Willie - Non Party 368
    O'Hara John - Fine Gael 1929
    Reape Annie Mae Fianna Fail 1212
    Regan Michael Sinn Fein - 267
    Smith Tracey Social Democrats - 178
    Seamus Weir - Non-Party 1119

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    Ballina has been named as one of the finalists in the 2020 Bank of Ireland Begin Together Awards.

    This year's awards recognise business and community groups who have come together to support their local area as they start to rebuild and recover from the impact of Covid-19.

    Ballina is competing with towns from across the island of Ireland, with a total prize fund of over €200,000 to help reboot local economies.

    The overall winner receives €50,000 and the title of "Ireland's Most Enterprising Town".

    There's also a €20,000 prize for the winner of the "Rising Star" award.

    The judging panel will review all finalists this month, and the winners will be announced in early October.

     

     

     

  • Ballina has today been named Ireland's Best kept Large Town for 2018.

    The 32-county Best Kept Towns competition has been running since 1985, and the awards are being presented in Belfast this afternoon.

    Ballina has beaten off competition from Armagh and Monaghan to be crowned Ireland's Best Kept Large Town.

     Chairman of Ballina Tidy Towns Jim Friel has collected the award at the Harbour Commissions Office in Belfast.

     

     

  • Ballina native Dr Peter Heffernan has been appointed the new Chair of the Council of the Dublin Institute of Advanced Studies - an internationally-renowned institute for research and scholarship.

    Prior to his appointment, Dr Heffernan served as CEO of the Marine Institute for 27 years - retriring from the position last year.

    Peter Hefferman says he's delighted to have been appointed by the President of Ireland as Chair of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, and says it's a privilege to work with an institute of such high calibre.

    The Institute - which celebrates its 80th anniversary this year - conducts and publishes advanced research across three areas - Celtic Studies, Theoretical Physics and Cosmic Physics.

     

  • Ballina native Rachel Nolan has become the first ever woman to win Ireland’s Phenomenal TransAtlanticWay Cycling event.

    The TransAtlanticWay is a 2500 km, one stage, self-supported road bike ride between Derry to Kinsale via the Wild Atlantic Way coastal tourist trail.

    This year’s event got underway last Thursday and this morning Rachel is reported to not only be the first woman to ever finish the event but also the first woman to win it outright.

    Rachel says it was a fantastic event and is over the moon to have won the endurance race.

     

  • Ballina native, former President of Ireland Mary Robinson is to receive the Tipperary International Peace Award.

    The Tipperary Peace Convention, the group that run the awards,  says it "recognises the efforts of Mrs Robinson in putting human rights standards at the heart of global governance", by ensuring that the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable are addressed on the global stage.

    "Mrs Robinson, they say,  is a passionate, forceful advocate for gender equality, women's participation in peace-building and human dignity in all regions of the world.

    "She makes it a priority to bring the concerns of ordinary people to the global stage and is outspoken and dedicated to investigating and exposing human rights abuses across the world".

    The award will be presented on November 7th in Tipperary town.

  • Ballina photographer David Farrell has scooped two major international sports photography awards.

    The Federation of European Professional Photographers 2020 awards were announced by video link from Brussels at the weekend.

    David Farrell represented Ireland in the prestigious competition, winning two Merit awards in the Single Images category, and beating off stiff competition from photographers representing 29 countries, with a total entry of 2,200 pictures.

    His winning photos were taken at various football and hurling events throughout the past year.

    The awards were due to be presented at a special ceremony in Rome, but had to be postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and were instead announced by video link from Brussels.

    (Attached is a black & white image David captured of the Mayo minor football team celebrating their Connacht final win over Galway in Tuam last Summer, while the lid of the trophy soars skywards).

     

  • A Ballina-based photographer has won an international sports photography award.

    David Farrell won the award at the Federation of European Professional Photographers 2019 awards, announced in Austria, for a black & white image entitled "Battling for the Sliothar".

    The photo was taken during the Connacht Intermediate Hurling Championship final between Mayo side Tooreen and Ballinderreen of Galway.

    The picture won a Merit award in the Single Images category of the prestigious competition, which attracted 2,400 entries from photographers across Europe.

    David Farrell was the only Irish photographer to win in the Sports category of the competition.

     

     

  • In five days time, children from junior infants up to and including 2nd class will return to school, as will Leaving Certs in secondary schools across the region.

    5th year students in secondary and all other primary school students will return 2 weeks later on 15th March, and remaining secondary school students on 12th April, after the Easter break.

    Vinnie Duffy is the INTO representative for Mayo & Sligo, and principal of Breaffy National School outside Ballina.

    Speaking with Midwest News, he said teachers and students are looking forward to getting back to the classroom next week..

     

  • Ballina has returned to the Irish Business Against litter campaign with one of its best-ever results.

    The North Mayo capital is ranked in 6th place overall in the ranking of 40 towns and cities nationwide, and is described as "Cleaner than European Norms".

    Eight of the ten sites surveyed in Ballina got the top grade .

    Top-ranking sites included the residential areas of Marian Crescent and Rockwell - both well-respected and maintained according to judges, while St Patrick's Church in Ballina was exceptionally well-presented and maintained, and Ballina District Hospital also ranked highly with a complete absence of litter, and well-maintained grounds.

     

    Roscommon Town is in 8th place on the list, also Cleaner than European Norms.

    Galway City and Sligo were in 17th and 20th place respectively, and described as Clean to European Norms.

    Kilkenny tops the litter league, while at the other end of the scale, Ballymun in Dublin is in 40th place, and described a litter blackspot.