Killarney mourns the legendary Brendan Grace

Comedian Brendan Grace has died aged 68, following a short illness.

A regular to Killarney Brendan Grace performed at The Gleneagle Hotel for over five decades.

Speaking to Killarney Outlook, Patrick O’Donoghue, MD of the Gleneagle Hotel Group said:  “We are greatly saddened to learn of the passing of our great friend Brendan Grace. Brendan worked hard to bring happiness and laughter to generations of Gleneagle guests. We are eternally grateful to him for creating so many memories both in The Gleneagle Ballroom and the INEC over the past five decades. Our thoughts are with his wife Eileen, his family and his many friends at this time. “

Born in Dublin, Grace began his career in entertainment as a singer but later turned to comedy, becoming well-known for characters like Bottler and the Father of the Bride.

He divided his time between Ireland and the US and was due to tour Ireland this summer.

He was battling cancer and over the past four weeks had been receiving treatment for pneumonia.

Brendan Grace is survived by his wife Eileen, children and grandchildren.

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a h-anam dílis. Ní bheidh a leithéid ann arís.

International Expert Delivers Keynote Update To GPs On Diabetes Crisis in Kerry/Cork Region

THERE is a diabetes crisis in the Cork/Kerry region with one of the highest incidences of Type 2 Diabetes in Europe, while there has also been an upsurge in late diagnosis of Type 1 Diabetes, which requires insulin at diagnosis.

The knock-on effect has resulted in a huge demand on hospitals in terms of the risk for heart attack and stroke caused by these metabolic diseases.

Cortisol is a key hormone involved in the genesis of obesity/insulin resistance and glucose regulation.

Considering the startling statistics, Dr Michael O’Reilly, an international expert on cortisol metabolism, made a keynote presentation to General Practitioners at a Study Event hosted by Mater Private Hospital Cork.

Dr James Ryan, the GP Study Evening Host and Consultant Endocinologist at Mater Private Cork, said: “We were fortunate to have a Galway-native colleague and friend of mine, Dr Mick O’Reilly, over from the University of Birmingham to give us a keynote update on cortisol metabolism and to further our ethic of education and research in endocrinology. The Endocrine Service in Mater Private Cork serves a large catchment area across Munster, helping to continue delivering gold standard care to all our patients.”

Dr Ryan’s colleagues from Mater Private Cork, Mr Tahir Khan and Dr Barry Hennigan also met with their GP colleagues in the academic setting at Citygate, Mahon.

Mr Khan, a Consultant General and Vascular Surgeon, is a specialist in Minimally Invasive Endocrine Surgery, while Dr Barry Hennigan, a Consultant Cardiologist, outlined the basics of Coronary Physiology, key trials and recent developments in the field of Perfusion MRI.

Mater Private Hospital Cork offers a comprehensive range of services to patients living with or newly diagnosed with Diabetes.

“We believe that the key to managing diabetes is with patient participation, education and empowerment and our services are based on the principal of comprehensive care in one setting, coordinated by one team,” added Dr James Ryan.

The Endocrinology Team at Mater Private Cork works with each patient individually to develop a personalised Diabetes Care Plan.

Best Newcomer Award for Pres Girls

Students from St. Brigid’s Presentation School in Killarney have claied the “Best Newcomer” award at the AIB Build A Bank Programme. The national competition is open to all transition year students in the country and this is  the first year that St Brigid’s presentation secondary school took part in the programme. They had to set up a bank in the school, learn about the mechanics  of what it takes to run a bank, open accounts for students and encourage savings.

The team decided they wanted their bank to benefit the school and did so under their theme of wellbeing. Recently the girls travelled to the RDS, Dublin to compete against schools from all over the country and won the coveted prize of “Best Newcomer”.

They had to present on stage at the RDS in front of their peers country wide and were delighted to come away with the prestigious award.

Congratulations to all the students and their teacher Adrienne Brosnan.

The AIB Build A Bank programme has been running for 17 years. It is a national competition open to all transition year students in the country.


The Killarney Municipal District of Kerry County Council is inviting submissions from members of the public as part of a review of the daytime pedestrianisation trials of Plunkett Street.

On the following occasions in 2018:

From Saturday, 31 March to Monday, 9 April, both dates inclusive.

From Friday, 11 May to Monday, 21 May, both dates inclusive

From Friday, 29 June to Monday, 3 September, both dates inclusive.

Plunkett Street was closed to traffic between the hours of 11.00 am and 7.00am, seven days a week, on a trial basis.

Kerry County Council is now encouraging everyone including local businesses, community groups and the general public to have their say on how the pedestrianisation trials operated.

Cathaoirleach of the Killarney Municipal District, Cllr John Sheahan said: ‘We voted last March to introduce the trials of pedestrianisation on Plunkett Street, with the intention of assessing the impact on pedestrians, shoppers, motorists, and businesses. Now we would like to hear what the people of Killarney and further afield think about this matter.

‘This is an informal consultation with the public but I hope that people will engage with it before we, as elected councilors, decide on any future pedestrianisation system which might apply,’ he said.

Anyone with a submission, comment or observation should email using Plunkett Street in the message line or write to the Killarney Municipal District Officer, Killarney Municipal District, Town Hall, Killarney before the deadline of Friday, 22nd February 2019.




Fáilte Ireland ramps up Brexit preparations with a €5 million investment to support tourism businesses

Fáilte Ireland will invest €5 million to support the tourism sector as it prepares for Brexit.
The announcement by Fáilte Ireland – the National Tourism Development Authority –  marks a significant ramping up of its activities to ensure Irish tourism is both ‘product-ready’ and ‘industry-ready’ ahead of the UK withdrawal from the EU.

The investment comes as new figures published by Fáilte Ireland today show the number one concern among tourism businesses is Brexit, particularly those in northern counties.

The Fáilte Ireland Tourism Industry Barometer is a survey of more than 500 tourism businesses nationwide providing insight into past performance and future prospects. The latest figures reveal that 7 out of 10 (69%) tourism businesses cite Brexit as their top concern – a figure which rises to 80% for accommodation providers in northern counties and 90% in the restaurant sector, both of which report a decline in their business from the UK last year.

More than 3.4 million British tourists, on average, holiday in Ireland every year and spend up to €1.6 billion. This contributes more than €233 million annually to the Exchequer.

Fáilte Ireland is warning that the fallout from a hard Brexit could cost more than €380 million to the sector.

The €5 million investment by Fáilte Ireland will help businesses assess the risk, respond to changes and diversify into other markets in a fresh drive under its ‘Get Brexit Ready’ programme. Its work will focus primarily on border counties and the South East region which have been most adversely affected by the devaluation of sterling and the drop in Northern Ireland and Great Britain visitors.

As well as providing support for over 1,000 businesses across the country, the Tourism Development Authority will also deliver a more targeted programme of training and mentoring for more than 100 businesses in border counties.

Fáilte Ireland’s Chief Executive, Paul Kelly, said:
”Fáilte Ireland is working intensively with businesses to help them prepare for Brexit. Brexit remains a key concern for every facet of the tourism sector as our latest barometer survey shows. This is particularly true for the restaurant sector nationwide, as well as accommodation providers in northern counties, who report that their visitor numbers from the UK are down over the past year. The prospect of a hard Brexit, or a potential no-deal scenario, leaves us with significant uncertainty relating to the wider implications it could have on tourism, particularly on the performance of our nearest and biggest overseas market. A less obvious consequence is that we are at risk of missing out on tourists from other core markets as the UK is our greatest competitor and the weakening value of sterling could make it more attractive to long-haul tourists, as well as those from Northern Europe. However, overall, the tourism sector is reporting a positive outlook for 2019. This sentiment would be very much underlined by what was a hugely successful year for tourism in 2018, with visitor numbers and revenue at all-time highs.”

Fáilte Ireland will spend €1.75 million specifically for commercial development to provide Irish tourism operators with opportunities to sell their products to growing markets such as the US. This work will focus on supporting northern counties particularly by bringing major international tour operators to Ireland on bespoke itineraries which they can then sell in core markets. Central to this programme of work will be the retention of the UK market by selling Ireland as a business tourism and golf destination – two types of tourism which typically yield a high number of UK tourists.  An additional €1.5 million will be spent on marketing and PR with campaigns targeting the Northern Irish market and the remainder of the Brexit allocation will be invested in business supports and resources.

Paul Kelly added:
“As we await the final outcome of Brexit, and with the situation changing on a daily basis, it is still difficult to quantify the range and scope of impacts that Brexit will have. Our key message to tourism businesses is ‘prepare and diversify’. Any tourism business which does not have Brexit contingencies as a central focus of its 2019 business plan needs to act fast. The most prudent action we can take as a sector is to be ready for the challenges it will bring. Fáilte Ireland has developed a series of initiatives to build capabilities within the industry which will allow them to continue to prosper in the face of this challenge. This includes investing €5 million in a comprehensive programme of supports and commercial development designed to help tourism businesses located particularly in border counties, to ‘Get Brexit Ready’ by diversifying to other markets and reducing their reliance on the British market.”

Other concerns highlighted in the industry barometer include the implications of the increase in the VAT rate to 13.5%.

Despite these concerns, today’s barometer results, which take into account the overall performance of 2018, strike a positive note overall. The proportion of tourism businesses expecting trade to be up in the year ahead (59%) outweighs those expecting a downturn. This is especially true for attractions, with about two thirds (68%) expecting more visitors this year.

Kilcummin Road Closed

Following slippage at an embankment alongside the L7013 Cockhill road in Killcummin, the road has been closed to traffic by Kerry County Council. The road is closed at Knockacullig North until further notice.


Residential access is not affected and diversions are in place. Motorists should use alternative routes in the area.


Kerry County Council personnel are assessing the damage which will be repaired as soon as possible and have closed the road until further notice.


Wedding bells at Muckross Park Hotel & Spa this January with a winter wedding showcase 

Muckross Park Hotel & Spa, the magnificent 5-star destination hotel in the heart of Killarney National Park will host a winter wedding tasting event on January 5th 2019. Ideal for newly engaged couples planning their special day, the event will showcase the very best that a magical wedding day at Muckross House Hotel has to offer. 
Taste the delicious wedding menus, view the wedding suites and meet the experienced wedding team. Sample dishes like shredded confit of duck leg with coconut and gin & tonic sorbet, grilled fillet of beef with roast shallot confit, seared fillet of turbot with saffron roast potato or roast supreme of corn-fed chicken served with pommes Anna, before sampling a delicious selection of desserts.
They say all the fun is in the planning and there’s plenty of fun to be had at the winter wedding event at Muckross Park Hotel & Spa with a live band and a host of local suppliers who will be on hand to offer tips and tricks to guarantee you a wedding day you’ll never forget. 
With a variety of spaces to choose from; whether you are planning an intimate or extravagant celebration, Muckross Park Hotel & Spa is the perfect setting. Any couple interested in attending the winter wedding taster event at Muckross Park Hotel & Spa should contact Wedding Coordinator, Bernie O’Donoghue, or call +353 (0)64 6623400. 

Dan made Honorary President of Beaufort Beekeepers Association

Beaufort Beekeepers’ Association finished their year on a high, Thursday night last. The club was formed in 2012 has a membership of in excess of 50. December meetings are always cut short and a Christmas party is enjoyed by all. However, this years party formed an even bigger celebration where the club honored one of its own.

Dan O’ Sullivan from Killgobnait just back the road was one of the founding members of the club and this year the club members paid tribute to him by making him their first Honorary President. This is the highest position that any local association can bestow on any member. To further recognise Dan’s contribution to the club, he became the first recipient of The John Foley Memorial Cup.

This perpetual cup is named in honor of former member, the late John Foley RIP. John sadly passed away after a short illness last January. He hailed from Waterville and was also among the first members of Beaufort Beekeepers’ Association. His name is recognised both nationally and internationally among beekeepers where he has won several titles including world titles in the quality of his honey. It is accepted by all club members that only Dan could be the first person to receive the cup after its unveiling. It was presented by Johns wife Breeda, after some kind words were said by members Mike O Sé from Dromid and John Tuddy Clifford from Beaufort.

Dan O’ Sullivan rarely misses a meeting (held in Beaufort Bar the first Thursday in every month). It is at these meetings members express their concerns or impart their knowledge on aspects relating to bees. Members often say what makes the meetings so enjoyable is the listening to members like Dan speak of his experience of handling bees for over 40 years. He has a vast knowledge of his craft, his willingness to share his experience in such a humble and honest way is refreshing to witness. Members are silenced and often in awe of Dan’s explanation of bee behavior.

Dan has on many an occasion helped beekeepers with their own bees giving freely of his time. At springtime the club runs a beekeeping beginners’ course. Just this year Dan reared a colony of bees and provided for it free to the club so it could be raffled among the beginner course members. This type of generosity is special and invaluable to any club. These course members got to see first-hand how to manipulate a hive bees in Tuddy’s local apiary.

Dan was one of the beekeepers that demonstrated how to handle bees in a hive. Anybody watching this demonstration certainly witnessed poetry in motion. Here Dan is at his most comfortable and using only his bare, unprotected hands he methodically goes through the hive with possibly up to a population of 60,000 bees. All this time Dan speaks and operates with complete reverence towards the bees.

So to finish up a great 2018 and to honor its best Beaufort celebrated and reflected into the night but also looked forward to what next year would have in store. Of course, it is widely known among beekeepers that they are eternal optimists as they firmly believe that next year’s honey crop will be the biggest crop ever.

Launch of Still In The Dreaming – An Anthology of Kerry poets

Muckross House was the beautiful venue for the launch of a stunning new book ‘Still In The Dreaming’ on Wednesday 28th November last. Leas-Cathaoirleach Cllr. John Joe Culloty launched the book, praising the quality of the poems and the dedication of the writers to their craft.

Last June a call-out for submissions to Kerry County Council’s writer in residence Annemarie Ní Churreáin, on social media, newspaper and radio as well as through the Arts Office’s own e-newsletter drew a huge response. Sixteen poets were selected, and they worked with Annemarie to polish and hone their poems in preparation for publication.

These poets are Barbara Derbyshire, Bernadette Ní Riada, Conor Cleary, Elizabeth Murtough, Faye Boland, John McGrath, Kevin Griffin, Lola Scollard, Lorraine Carey, Marian Relihan, Mary Lavery Carrig, Michael Joyce, Noel King, Paul Murphy, Philomena Hearne (nee Stack) and Victoria Kennefick.

The workshops took place in Kerry County Museum and Annemarie has now overseen the editing and publication of these poems.

‘I chose ‘Still In The Dreaming’ for the title of the book as a tribute to the late John Moriarty,’ she explains. ‘John was a poet who was deeply inspired by nature and he described Kerry’s landscape as one that was still in the dreaming.’

Kate Kennelly, Arts Officer, adds, ‘These new poems all capture in their own way the deep connections of nature and nurture that Kerry people feel for the world and people around them. Each poem is a worthy addition to the treasure that is Kerry literature and the book is something to be proud of.’

‘The residency was supported by Kerry County Council, The Arts Council, The Trustees of Muckross House and Gardens, the National Parks and Wildlife Service, Creative Ireland Kerry, and along with Kerry County Museum’s hosting of the workshops and Kerry Library hosting workshops also, reflects the strong support there is for writing in the county.’

The writer in residence programme will recommence in March 2019 and further details will be posted on @KerryCoArts on twitter and facebook and in the e-newsletter which can be subscribed to through Kerry County Council’s website.

Copies of Still In The Dreaming will be available to purchase on the night and can be bought for a limited time through the Arts Office at Kerry County Council. They will also be available for loan through Kerry Libraries.

Launch of The Kerry Magazine, No. 29, 2019.

The Kerry Magazine (No. 29, 2019), which is published annually by the Kerry Archaeological and Historical Society, was launched in Killarney library on Tuesday night, by Patricia O’Hare, Research and Education Officer, Trustees of Muckross House, Killarney. This year’s magazine contains 21 articles and other material including a list of publications about Kerry, relating to Kerry and by Kerry authors received by Kerry library during the period October 2017-October 2018. As usual the range of subject matter reflects Kerry’s rich and diverse culture and heritage. The geographical spread of material throughout Kerry is as varied as possible. It ranges from Dingle, Tralee, Ballymacelligott, Killarney, Milltown, Farranfore to Brosna. Speaking at the launch editor and Society president Marie O’Sullivan, reflected “where in any other publication would one find an article about the 60th anniversary of The Rose of Tralee alongside an article on Martin Luther and the impact/legacy of the Reformation in Kerry 500 years on”! She further stated “this just proves that there is a place in the Magazine for a wide range of subject matter and for a broad readership”. Marie reflected on the article commemorating the 50th anniversary of Siamsa Tíre, and how our National Folk Theatre, which is based in Tralee, has highlighted that particular aspect of our culture on the world stage, during the last 50 years. On behalf of the Society, Marie thanked county librarian Tommy O’Connor, for the support of the library service and Kerry County Council, down through the years. She further thanked the contributors, designer Catherine Teehan and Walsh Colour Print. The Magazine, which is distributed free to Society members, will also be available for sale for a limited period of time in local shops and bookshops throughout Kerry. In conclusion, Marie suggested that it would make an ideal Christmas gift for anyone at home or abroad, as would membership of the Kerry Archaeological and Historical Society,