Morning Focus – Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Morning Focus heard the story of, a man rescued from the water at Balyvaughan Pier on Sunday night thanks to the quick actions of a Garda Sergeant and a member of the public.

The man in question was in a car which drove into the water there, and local man John McDonnald and Garda Sergeant John Casey were quick into the water after him.

The retrieved him safely from the vehicle, and he was taken to hospital for treatment.


The men are being hailed as heroes for their actions, but when we spoke yesterday Ennistymon-based Sgt. Casey was humble as he told Gavin how the incident unfolded, beginning with what seemed like a routine call.

The government's housing agency is to start buying homes to use for social housing.

Around 1,000 private properties will be assessed for suitability over the next two years.

They've been given a fund of 70 million euro to buy properties to be used for social housing. The Housing Agency say they hope to buy more than 200 homes by the end of the year. In addition, a choice-based letting system – which was trialled in Dublin – is to be extended to other local authorities around the country. The system enables those on the housing waiting list to log on to a dedicated website to see available homes and to express their interest in them. It's designed to reduce the rate of refusal of social housing by prospective tenants.

Jackie says people sometimes give 'ridiculous reasons' for refusing social housing, but that in the majority of cases, reasons are genuine – e.g. location of schools and family support.

Jackie also feels Midwest Simon has been negatively affected by the ongoing scandals over pay and perks in the charitable sector.

Gerry also believes people on waiting lists can't simply accept any house that's offered to them. He feels the government is spinning a line about prospective tenants being too picky. In his experience, the reasons for refusing social housing are mostly genuine. *Gerry is also concerned about a review of local authority housing lists ordered by government. Tenants has until August 5 to complete a review form or they would be removed from the housing list.

Gavin was joined on the line by Jackie Bonfield of Midwest Simon and from Cllr Gerry Flynn, Ind.

Member of Clare County Counci's Housing Committee

Clare FM's Morning Focus producer Fiona McGarry reported on the boost for business from the All-Ireland Fleadh in Ennis. Estimates suggest it's set to bring a boost of up to 40-million Euro to the local economy.

It's a stimulus that the retail sector in the town badly needs.

Fiona McGarry joined Gavin in studio to discuss what traders, Ennis Chamber and Clare County Council had to say on the subject of traffic, business and the ongoing Fleadh.

Clare FM's CaoimhÍn O Sé looked ahead to what Fleadh Cheoil na hEireann promises today (Tue. August 16) in terms of events, activities, craic agus ceoil.

glór is getting into the spirit of the Fleadh with a very special exhibition of photography celebrating Clare's music and music makers.

A collection of images captured by renowned Clare photographer and musician Christy McNamara was officially launched last night (Mon., Aug. 15) by Martin Hayes.

'Where My Heart Lies' celebrates and honours the rich legacy of music and music making in this county in those who carried it and passed it on. Many of Christy’s most iconic and recognisable works are collected in one place for the first time.

Gavin was joined in studio by Christy who discussed the inspiration behind the exhibition and also played the accordion.

Clare FM's Ronan Moyles presented a special report from the streets of Ennis where he spoke to some of those visiting Fleadh Cheoil na hEireann.

Crowds continue to descend on Ennis as Fleadh Cheoil na hEireann continues,

Frankie Coote, Clare County Dog Warden, joined Gavin to round off this edition of Morning Focus.