Violence flares in Mayo on Patrick’s Night
St Patrick’s Day and Night proved to be a busy period for Gardaí in several major towns in Mayo as revellers came out in force for to "drown the shamrock". Incidents of public order on the streets were higher than normal with a number of arrests throughout the county. A number of people were arrested in Castlebar for public order offences after large crowds of youths gathered on the main streets of the town. There was also an incident in Ballindine in which a man was robbed of a large sum of money after 10 pm on the public street. A follow up operation resulted in two men being arrested. They subsequently appeared before a hearing of Galway District Court. Sgt Pat Diskin of Castlebar Garda Station said there were a number of arrests in Castlebar and other towns around Mayo on St. Patrick’s Night. "It was a busy enough night but there were adequate resources to deal with anything that occurred."
I must say that this all sounds like local papers trying to catch up and outdo Joe Duffy. ‘A busy enough night’ doesn’t sound like it warrants a headline connecting violence specifically with St. Patrick’s Night here in Mayo. Any regular weekend night has similar levels of violence. Three people arrested in Castlebar. Wow! A sum of money stolen? Wow again! So will the local papers run headlines every weekend now saying Violence flares on Last Friday Night, Last Saturday Night, Last Sunday Night? I don’t think so. Just because RTE takes a series of phone calls from grouchy types who ring JD doesn’t mean the WP should ape them without thinking.
The Western People had a great couple of leprechauns and a big bear at the Castlebar parade. They distributed free copies of their paper and sweeties to the kids. They were excellent at the parade. To me everyone watching and participating in our St. Patrick's Day celebrations here was having a good time.
Many parades have been cancelled because of insurance costs. Hyping things up like this when it’s not really warranted is simply playing right into the hands of the insurance sharks. They are just looking for reasons to hike the costs up. "Oh now it’s 50% dearer in 2005 compared with 2004 because of all the violence at the parade – we read it in the papers".
Remember the foot and mouth year when we had no parades at all in order to help our farming brethren out? The most miserable Paddy’s Day ever!!
Strange weather in February for Mayo
February was a very strange month as far as weather conditions were concerned. There were a total of twelve totally dry days and a total of 77.1 mm. of rain for the whole month. Details of the weather and temperatures were recorded by members of Ballina Golf Club at their grounds for the Meteorological Office. The month started off with a veritable deluge when there was a total of 22.7 mm of rain on the 1st, and 12 mm on the 2nd. After that it was relatively dry until the 8th when the dry days started. There was no rain from the 10th until the 15th when there was .9 mm. and the 16th when there was 1 mm. After that there was a second dry spell until 23rd. The lowest temperatures were on the 18th when minus 2.6 was recorded, on 19th when it was minus 5 and on 20th when it was minus 3. The highest temperature recorded was 14 degrees on the 2nd. Total rainfall for the month was 77.1 compared with 141.4 in February 2000, 54.7 in O1, 178.7 in 02 and 69.1 in 2003.
Ah sure isn’t global warning is great for the greens? But then they say that it rains two out of every three days in the West. And that seems to be more or less what happened at Ballina Golf Club in February. In fact looking at the rainfall from Belmullet for February 77mm is more than they got at Belmullet in both 2004 and 2003 and only 3mm less than the Belmullet 30-year average of 80mm.
Crossmolina health fears over nasty smell
At the monthly meeting of Crossmolina Community Council, complaints were heard from residents of the Ballina Road/Convent Road area, which is a busy junction, of the leakage and foul smell coming from the manhole, located there. It was felt that it constituted a serious health hazard. Resident’s angrily complained they had been given the run around so far in having it dealt with.
Just as well they don’t have to deal with their own one-off septic tanks on a regular basis! Or the smell of slurry spreading in the morning when the guy who sold you your one-off bungalow site spreads cattle or pig shit on the field outside your back window. Nobody ever says anything about health scares when it's just cattle or pig slurry smells wafting in the window. But a smell from a sewer covered with a manhole. Now that's a different matter!