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Photo: Leonard Doyle

He was blind in one eye and couldn't see especially well out of the other, wore dark-framed, vaguely government-issue glasses, but they're lowered, he's turning his head and squinting over the top of them. He reads from "The Portable James Joyce," my mother's Penguin paperback from college. He's holding it close to his face. me the famous last paragraph, "The time had come for him to set out on his journey westward. . . ." Nothing of the actual language remained with me, except, years later, reading the story at school, there was something like déjà vu at the part where Joyce first says the snow was "falling faintly," then four words later says it was, "faintly falling." The slight overconspicuousness of that had stuck, as I suppose he intended.

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Stones of Aran: Pilgrimage (New York Review Books Classics) by Tim Robinson">Stones of Aran: Pilgrimage (New York Review Books Classics) by Tim Robinson
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Headwinds for seaplane to Aran

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A SEAPLANE company planning to launch a seaplane service on the Shannon, which will take tourists to the Aran Islands, has run into headwinds and unexpected obstacles.


Harbourair Ireland Ltd lodged three planning application before local authorities in Galway and Clare to allow it to land a seaplane in Lough Derg on the Shannon, Galway city docks and the main harbour serving the Aran Island at Inis Mór.
The service is a joint venture with Harbour Air Malta, which will be supplying expertise and the aircraft, a 14-seater single-engine Otter seaplane.


In a letter to the Department of the Environment, Emelyn Heaps of Harbourair Ltd has demanded that the department issue a letter of retraction over its request that Clare County Council seek an environmental study over the application to establish a seaplane on the Shannon.


The Clare dimension has attracted a large number of local objections, prompting director of Harbourair Ireland Ltd Ronan Connolly to say this month: "There has been total overkill on this. We are not planning to land a jumbo jet. We are talking about a nine- to 12-seater seaplane."


The Department of the Environment is demanding that the council seek a comprehensive environmental study into the plan as "birds are likely to be disturbed and possibly injured by the operation of seaplanes in Mountshannon bay".


However, this has prompted a stinging rebuke from Mr Heaps. In the letter, he is demanding a letter of retraction over the demand.


"I strongly suggest that you carry out an in-house investigation of the productivity of your staff and attempt to stop them from wasting other people's money, time and effort, especially those who are trying to develop tourism."


Mr Heaps said the company was requesting a letter of retraction from the department to include an apology to Clare County Council for the inappropriate and unprecedented request for an environmental impact statement (EIS).


He said Harbourair was appalled by the demand for what is "a walkway and jetty at Mountshannon as it is not within the remit of the planning authorities to give planning for a seaplane operation.


"This decision will be made by the Irish Aviation Department and not any planning authority. The EU directive states that an EIS is required for freshwater marinas for 100-berth plus. It is inconceivable that an EIS should be requested for a single pontoon and walkway."


He added: "Shannon Development and Fáilte Ireland have endorsed this innovative tourism project and while we have spent over two years in its creation, with a sizeable investment of our own, the Department of the Environment's reaction to promoting and creating much-needed tourism and jobs in the region is to seek an EIS.


"If they have concerns on the impact a seaplane may have on fauna and bird life, they should take time in doing a little research on seaplane operation worldwide.


"They would have found the following: there is no recorded incident of a single-engine light aircraft being associated with bird kills - this is a limited occurrence that is associated with jet aircraft.


"River cruisers cause far more noise and river pollutants than a seaplane would ever cause, and more birds are killed on Irish roads every day than are killed in a year by aircraft."


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Due to the stormy weather conditions, the Inis "Iron" Meáin race has been rescheduled for Saturday the 23rd of January 2010. The new application form is here and there are still free slots available.
 
See application button below and here

 
IM1.jpgA 10 kilometer run over winding roadways, rough terrain, sand dunes and beaches, is what it takes to compete in the 'Inis Iron Meáin'. Every November since 2004, Inis Meáin hosts one of the most challenging athletic events in the country, a fact confirmed by regular participants such as Sonia O'Sullivan and David Campbell (last years winner). The 10 kilometer run was initiated by Lorcain O'Callarain in 2004, the then Muinteoir i bhFoighil of Coláiste Naomh Eoin as a fundraiser for the new secondary school.
From late September onwards, the students and staff of Coláiste Naomh Eoin start preparations for the event. Entry fees must be recorded and acknowledged, the courses (crua agus fíor crua) must be marked out, hot food for after the event has to be organised, maps are prepared, accommodation and restaurants are booked, 10k goody bags are packed and nightly entertainment is decided. This hustle and bustle radiates throughout the island and the whole community gets behind the school, making it one of the most anticipated events of the year.
Text Box: Inis "Iron" Meáin Fancy Dress 2008. The Inis Meáin Pink ladies!However, the weekend does not just focus on strenuous activity alone. It is a chance for friends to meet up and a fancy dress competition is held in the pub on the night of the 10k. Last years fancy dress theme had to do with the letter 'P' which saw both islanders and mainlanders dressed up as Popeye, priests, pirates, pink ladies and pea pods!
However, to participate in the Inis "Iron" Meáin you do not have to be a serious athlete. There is an easier shorter course and you can walk, jog or run. On behalf of Coláiste Naomh Eoin, we would like to extend much thanks to all of you on the mainland and on Inis Meáin who supported the event to date, making it an event to remember which goes from strength to strength every year.

 
The Inis "Iron" Meáin will be held on the 23rd of January 2010. If you are up to the challenge, then please contact:
Coláiste Naomh Eoin at (099) 73991 or ring Geraldine on (086)3460792 and we will fill you in on all the details for Inis "Iron" Meáin 2009. Cost per entry is €50.

Application Forms: Click here

Aran drivers go electric

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Aran islanders are getting the opportunity to skip age of petrol fumes. This week got their first glimpse of the electric car that could pave the way for a total transformation of life as they know it.

The first Mega 'e-City' three-door hatchback arrived on Inis Mór on Tuesday for residents to test drive. One of their most pressing questions for the accompanying boffins was if this brainchild of French engineers could conquer the island's notoriously steep hills without the benefit of petrol or diesel.

One thing they know already is that if the car hits its top speed of 64kph they will almost certainly escape the wrath of the law - the speed limit across the three islands is just 60kph.

The electric car, which is about the same size as a Nissan Micra, is one of ten to be rolled out across the three islands as part of a three-year pilot project to see if the wind and ocean can generate enough energy for electricity, heat and transport for a small community.

The project, which is a collaboration between Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI) and the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, attracted tenders from 18 companies from around Europe.

From January there will be six cars leased to residents of Inis Mór, two to Inis Meain and two to Inis Oirr, with different households chosen for each year of the project.

Interested motorists must apply to the local co-op, Comharchumann Forbartha Árann Teo, to be accepted, but they must have a clean licence and driving history, they must be under 65 and currently drive a fully taxed vehicle.

According to Fiona Smith of (SEI), successful applicants will have to pay a nominal amount for the lease of the car, around €12, a fee for a connection charge point on the outside of their home, which will be around €330, and then the cost of the electricity to run it. That is likely to be no more than €60 for the year.

The electric car consumes 130 units per km, whereas a similarly sized car such as a Peugeot 107 consumes 520 units per km. Motorists are tipped to save up to 80% in fuel costs.

"It really is a much, much more efficient alternative," explained Ms Smith. "This could become an alternative to shipping in fuel, making the island more self reliant and sustainable."

Dara O'Maoildhia, secretary of the energy community on Inis Mór, said his first impressions of the first bright orange 'e-City' were extremely positive.

"It's roomy in the front, there's no sense you're up against the window. But in the back I would say there's room only for two children. It's got electric windows, reversing sensors, it's comfortable enough. I've no doubt people will be interested in it," he told the Connacht Tribune.

Queries put to the engineers by residents during their day-long visit to the island included how long the car would run before it needed charging, how long it would take for a car to be fixed and how many charging devices were necessary on the island.

These are all issues likely to be ironed out before the launch in early January.

The energy committees on the three islands have been pushing for more energy efficient alternatives for some years. Inis Mór now boasts an electric post van, while tourists can now rent electric bikes to explore the island.

"Our vision for the island is to have no requirement for carbon fuel of any kind, no need for coal, petrol or diesel so that homes are heated and cars are run on alternative energy. We pay more for coal and more for a gallon of diesel than anywhere in the country - at the moment diesel is €1.06, whereas on the island it's €1.20," said Mr O'Maoildhia.

He hopes smart meters will be installed in participating houses within the next three years, which will be attached to the side of the fuse box to monitor the electricity going in and out. Windmills may be built in the gardens and any energy generated will be directed by this smart box into the house to be used in the most efficient way.

"The smart meter will direct the electricity to the battery of the car when the price of electricity is low, but when the price is high, it will be dropped into the electricity grid and you can make a fortune. "At least that's the plan," he said.

More at The Connacht Tribune

When the British tried to invade the Aran Islands

Galway Advertiser, September 24, 2009.

By Kernan Andrews

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In December 1920, the British army, then fighting the IRA in the Irish War of Independence, carried out an amphibious raid on Inishmore in the Aran Islands.

The islands had been evacuated by the RIC in July 1920, but the British suspected that they were being used by men 'on the run'. On December 19, Inis Mór was raided, resulting in the capture of two shotguns, two revolvers, and 10 IRA officers. One man who tried to escape was shot.

The raid is one of several fascinating incidents featured in William Sheehan's new book Hearts & Mines: The British 5th Division, Ireland, 1920-1922, published by The Collins Press. It contains original photographs and previously unpublished information. Also included is the British view on famous encounters such as the Partry Ambush and the burning of Ballinlough RIC Barracks.

The book is the final volume of a trilogy based on primary sources that includes British Voices (2005) and Fighting For Dublin (2007). According to the author, the book "will provide readers with the British army perspective on events in Ireland from 1919 to 1921".

more here

Irish novelist's quest for a perfect pint...in Aran

By COLM TóIBíN

It is hard for me to think about the Aran Islands, the three rugged outposts off the coast of Galway, without dreaming of a perfect pint of Guinness on a drizzling summer afternoon, when all hopes of walking, or cycling, or swimming had been gloriously dampened by the weather, and there was only one place to go, and that was the pub. And from the window you could study the gray sky over the fierce Atlantic ocean, the white wash of the waves breaking in the distance, and somehow the drink in your hand, the beauty of the black and white liquid, the silky softness of its taste, especially if you were on your second or third pint, meant freedom, ease, time you treasured and longed for.

Read more....

I--Colm Tóibín is the author of the novels "Brooklyn" and "The Master."


See also Sean Scully: Walls of Aran with afterword by Colm Toibin





Tragedy as Galway hooker sailor drowned

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HEROIC EFFORTS by the crew of a Galway hooker to save two brothers whose boat had capsized were praised by a priest at the funeral of a renowned Connemara sailor yesterday.

Fr Peadar Ó Conghaile told hundreds of mourners, who filled not just the church but also the grounds of St Mary's Church in Carna, that the four crewmen should get medals for bravery.

Seán Mac Donncha (67), known locally as Johnny Sheáin Jeaic, lost his life in the accident on Saturday morning as he and his younger brother Josie, went to take their traditional Galway hooker McHugh from Kinvara in the south of the bay to a regatta in Rossaveal. The boat capsized shortly after leaving Kinvara.

Mourners were yesterday told how the crew of Bláth na hÓige , which also left from Kinvara, came to their aid. The four men, Gearóid Ó Cualáin, Máirtín Ó Conghaile, Aonghus Ó Cualáin and Máirtín Ó Ceoinín, managed to rescue Josie but they were unable to save his brother.

"These men, especially Gearóid Ó Cualáin, risked their lives to save others," said Fr Ó Conghaile. The Carna parish priest said that, as in so many other coastal villages, loss at sea was all too frequent. Hundreds of mourners brought the small south Connemara village to a standstill.

St Mary's was packed from early morning and the mourners extended out on to the main road in the village.

They had travelled from the three nearby Aran Islands, Inishbofin and other offshore islands, as well as coastal communities from Cork to Donegal. Others had travelled from the United States where wider family members reside.

"We are all too familiar with loss at sea in these parts, yet there was enormous shock when the news came through on Saturday morning," Fr Ó Conghaile said.

"Johnny was a man who was renowned and respected as a man of the sea, a lover of the Irish language and Irish culture, and a great singer. He is an enormous loss to the community."

Mr Mac Donncha, from Ard West, Carna, is survived by his wife Barbara, daughters Kathy, Maureen, Roisín and Fiona, and son Seán. He was buried in Moyrus cemetery outside Carna.

No secret now as Spielberg's cover blown in Ireland!

Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw in secret vacation in Ireland
Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw in secret vacation in Ireland

Hollywood director Steven Spielberg has been on a secret summer vacation in Ireland.

Spielberg, along with his wife, actress Kate Capshaw, and their teenage son have criss-crossed the country from the windswept Aran Islands to the Burren to plush Rathmines in Dublin.

They stayed at Ballyvaughan country holiday homes in the Burren before moving to the east coast.

Officials have dampened down rumors that the Oscar-winning director is scouting the country for a movie location.

A spokeswoman for The Irish, Film and Television Network said: "As far as we are aware Steven Spielberg is not working on a film in Ireland at the moment."

Just last month, Spielberg and Capshaw did a "pilgrimage" walk in Ireland which included poetry, spiritualism and walking on Inis Mor and trips in County Clare.

There were concerns over Spielberg's fitness as he had to use an electric bicycle to climb the hilltop ruins at Dun Aonghas on Inis Mor.

read more 


Thanks IrishCentral.Com for the breathless report, but course readers of Aran-Isles.com already knew about Spielberg's trip from our earlier reporting. Spielberg-is-spellbound-by-aran

Robert Flaherty - A Boatload of Wild Irishmen

Robert Flaherty Feature Doc to Begin Post Production


31 Jul 2009 |


Robert Flaherty
Editing will begin shortly on 'A Boatload of Wild Irishmen', a feature length documentary on Robert Flaherty, who became one of documentary cinema's most influential figures directing and producing the 1922 feature length film 'Nanook of the North'.

Written by Brian Winston, an Emmy award-winning documentary script-writer, 'A Boatload of Wild Irishmen' is being produced/directed and shot by Mac Dara Ó Curraidhín. The actor (and Aran Islander) Macdara Ó Fátharta will narrate the Irish language version of the film. An English language version for international distribution may be produced at a later time.

The documentary will explain the importance of Robert Flaherty, over the dramatic footage he took of a currach caught in a monstrous sea (from Man of Aran, 1934). He was the first to see that film of the every day life of 'real' people could be moulded into dramatic, entertaining narratives: but, by the same token, he is also the father of manipulation and distortion as well as being a bridge whereby stereotypes of exotic peoples (including Aran Islanders of the 1930s) became part of cinema.

The prime-source of imagery for the documentary will be the Flaherty film archive including 'Nanook of the North', 'Moana; The Pottery Maker' (1925); 'The 24 Dollar Island' (1926/7) and 'Man of Aran'.

This will be augmented by contemporary photography of various locations in Ireland, England, the USA, Canada and Samoa; his stills; other archival materials including 'Man of Aran: How the Myth was Filmed' and interviews with Mrs Frances Flaherty, Colman 'Tiger' King (recorded by Breandán Ó hÉithir in England in the 1970s) and Portrait of Robert Flaherty (a BBC radio documentary of 1952 with interviews with Flaherty, among others).

Editing will take place over the next six to eight weeks in Lincon, UK, and will be overseen by David Sleitht.

The film was funded by the BCI, TG4, the Irish Film Board, EM Media (U.K.), and MEDIA Europa.

  


Love & Savagery
John N. Smith's Canada-Ireland co-production 'Love & Savagery' shot in Inis Mor and in Clare will be receiving its world premiere screening at the 33rd Montreal World Film Festival (27 August - 7 September), also screening is documentary 'Child of the Dead End'.

Love and Savagery is a story of passion, fate, and the consequences of the two. In 1968, Newfoundland geologist and poet, Michael McCarthy, travels to Ballyvaughan to examine the "Burren" a geological wonder. There he meets Cathleen, a beautiful woman who captures his heart, but because of the path she chose when she was young she cannot allow him to capture hers. Savagery erupts when Michael's persistence collides with the townspeople's hostility toward a foreigner's attempt to intervene with divinity. Cathleen has to choose between a desire that she has recently discovered and a desire that she has felt throughout most of her life. Which will she choose? The love of a man, or the love of God? Can she love both? Is she strong enough to make the right choice?

Back in May, a negative of a 35mm film was sent through Canada customs by way of Ireland. Canada customs decided that since Ireland is that that title was just indecent, they held the film up....even though with producers in Quebec and Ireland, the Newfoundland and Labrador Film Development Corp. and the Irish Film Board were backing the film,...

Featuring in the festival's World Greats strand, 'Love & Savagery' is produced by St. John's-based Barbara Doran of Morag Loves Company and Lynne Wilson for Newfoundland alongside Kevin Tierney of Montreal-based Park Ex Pictures for Quebec. Tristan Orpen Lynch (Proof) of Subotica Entertainment, Ireland, is executive producer.

Commenting on the selection of the Irish co-produced film for the Montreal Festival, executive producer Tristan told IFTN: "We are delighted that 'Love and Savagery' has been chosen to premiere at the Montreal World Film Festival. This is a poetic and charming love story which we shot in the West of Ireland - emerging Irish actress Sarah Greene delivers a remarkable performance in the female lead role."

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The $6.3m film which was partly shot in County Clare and Inis Mor last year, was written by screenwriter Des Walsh with Pierre Latarte director of photography.

Set in 1969, 'Love & Savagery' follows a young Newfoundland scientist who set off to explore Ireland's geology only to discover his one true love. The young woman's plans to enter the church are sorely tested, as are the community's traditions.

Canadian actor Allan Hawco and Irish actress Sarah Greene star in the lead roles with support from Martha Burns, Sean Panting, Macdara O'Fatharta and Nicholas Campbell. Other Irish crew involved in he production include; Supervising producer Jo Homewood; Production designer Padraig O'Neill; Art director Michael Moynihan and Location manager Colm Nolan.

Finance for the film was provided by Telefilm Canada, The Newfoundland and Labrador Film Development Corporation and the Irish Film Board.

Also chosen to be screened at the Montreal World Film Festival is 'Child of the Dead End' a documentary by Desmond Bell, which draws upon a rich vein of early cinema archive and live action shot in Ireland, Scotland and England.

'Child of The Dead End' tells the touching story of poet, novelist, dramatist and Screen writer Patrick MacGill played by Oscar-nominated actor Stephen Rea.

The production, which involved two shoots in Donegal, one in Cloughaneely, Poison Glen and Glenties in May of 2008 and a second in Glenties and around Mount Errigal in August of the same year, was produced by Glass Machine Productions; Elle Kent, Rebecca Dover and edited by Simon Hipkins, director of photography on the project was Sam Mitchell.

Read more here

Aran Islands Lifeboat supporters

Aran Islands Lifeboat supporters <David-Kirkaldy>
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This a band for every one who supports or recognises in any way the huge benifit the R.N.L.I is to the Aran Islands, the entire mid-west coast of ireland and of course to all that serve and work on the sea. And to help recognise the heroic voluntary work that the crew do without a second thought.

Since 1927, The Aran Islands lifeboat station has covered the dramatic, rocky wilderness facing outwards to the Atlantic Ocean. Formerly known as Galway Bay until 1995, the lifeboat crews have been presented with over 20 awards for gallantry.


OUR BOAT: R.N.L.B Mr. David Kirkaldy
Category: All-weather
Length: 17m
Range: 250 nautical miles
Speed: 25 knots
Weight: 41 tonnes
Crew: Min: 5, Max: 7
Construction: Fibre Reinforced Composite
Launch type: Moored afloat


Pádraic Connolly becomes a YouTube star


                                                   
 Filming Pádraic Connolly a tPoll na Peist,  aka the Serpent's Cave or the Worm Hole on Inis Mór, for Tourism Ireland's online film highlighting the 'hidden gems' of County Galway

Galwayman Pádraic Connolly is doing his bit for tourism this year by presenting a short film on the 'hidden gems' of Co Galway on Tourism Ireland's website.  It is one of a series of ten short films or 'webisodes' which have already been viewed by almost 400,000 potential visitors around the world - see here for the video on Aran-Isles.com
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Pádraic Connolly takes a trip to the Aran islands

Tourism Ireland recently launched the series of films which feature real local characters from around the island of Ireland introducing their favourite 'hidden gems'.  Galwayman Pádraic Connolly was selected from the 1,000+ people across the island who applied to take part, to tell viewers and potential holidaymakers around the world about some of his favourite places in his home county. 

In the film, Pádraic takes the viewer on a journey around Connemara - highlighting the spectacular scenery and beautiful coastline.  He begins in Roundstone Harbour where he meets some of the local fishermen.  He continues to the beautiful Coral Strand at Carraroe and then it is on to his own birthplace, Rossaveal, and from there to Inis Mór.  Throughout the film, he regales the viewer with his many tales and legends - including a story about the local man who disappeared at the Worm Hole on Inis Mór!  He finishes his journey on Inis Oírr with its cluster of ancient ruins.

"Visitors repeatedly tell us that what distinguishes the island of Ireland from other destinations - what sets us apart from our competitors - is our people and our scenery", said Laughlin Rigby, eMarketing Manager, Tourism Ireland.  "This online movie, presented by Pádraic, provides an added dimension of information on the many attractions on offer in Co Galway, in a novel and entertaining way". 

"Customers are not just searching for the lowest fare any more; they are seeking information and recommendations on the perfect holiday experience - where to go, what to see and do and where to eat.  These movies complement our new global advertising campaign 'Go Where Ireland Takes You'.  The campaign has been designed to capture the spontaneity and fun of holidaying here and to show that some of the most wonderful and memorable experiences you are likely to have here will be stumbled on by chance", Rigby added.

The ten films or 'webisodes', which have been translated into five European languages, feature on Tourism Ireland's suite of 41 websites and are also being promoted in its main overseas markets on Yahoo.  The films will also feature on a new promotional DVD, which will be distributed to potential holidaymakers in the all-important GB market during August.  To see the films, visit www.discoverireland.com/go


Spielberg is spellbound by Aran

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HOLLYWOOD director and producer Steven Spielberg spent a day on the Aran Islands last week as part of an eight day visit to the West of Ireland.

Mr Spielberg and his wife, the actress Kate Capshaw were part of a David Whyte tour to Ireland, which involves poetry, spiritualism and walking tours taking in pilgrimage sites.

Mr Spielberg has made hundreds of films including Jaws, Saving Private Ryan, Schindler's List, The Color Purple and the Indiana Jones movies.

Dun Aengus by the sea

The walking group stayed in cottages in County Clare for the most part but last Thursday they spent a full day on Inis Mór, where the highlight was a visit to Dun Aonghusa, the cliff top fort ruins.

The group cycled to the fort in the early afternoon and Mr Spielberg was one of the group that used motorised bicycles, as most of the journey is uphill on the way there.

At Dun Aonghusa, Mr Spielberg chatted easily with OPW staff, who man the heritage site during the summer season and had his photograph taken with them.

More at The Connacht Tribune


Dun Aonghusa
Inishmore - Signal Tower

A CONTROVERSIAL plan to turn a historic 19th century Lighthouse at the highest point of Inis Mór in the Aran Islands into a teahouse has been approved, despite seriolus concerns about the plans.

The lighthouse is one of the dominant landmarks of Aran, beside Dun Eochla, a major prehistoric monument of the island. Eochaill ( Oughill ) derives its name from Dún Eochla, a late Bronze Age ring fort. The name means Yew wood "Eo Choill".

This fort commands some of Aran's most spectacular views. From here, on a clear day 5 counties can be seen, Kerry, Limerick , Clare, Galway and Mayo.

To the west is the old signal tower; built in 1799 after the 1789 rebellion to protect Ireland's west coast from Spanish or French invasion. Similar buildings can be seen on Golam Island and Inis Oirr. Signals were sent by light and semaphores - flags.

Lighthouse and Signal Tower Beside this is the island's first lighthouse which began its short working life on a May Day 1818. Unfortunately the lighthouse was ill positioned and was blind to ships in the Gregory Sound and when rounding Earrach Island to the west. It was decommissioned when new lighthouses were constructed in Killeaney Bay and on Earrach Island to the west, though it was manned during both world wars. Hat tip Aran Pony & trap Tours

Dun Arann Lighthouse &amp; Signal Tower

An appeal against the development by An Taisce, the national trust for Ireland has failed, and An Bord Pleanála has given the project the go-ahead.  A report by the planning inspector Louise Kiernan on 9 April last said "the proposed development would be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area."

Lighthouse and Signal Tower

As often happens in Ireland, political pressure led to Galway county council granting permission for the controversial plan last yea. An Taisce then appealed the decision only to be overruled by An Bord Pleanála last week.

 Dun Arann Signal Tower and Lighthouse, both of which are National Monuments and Protected Structures are close to the development which is located in a designated Natural Heritage area and Special Area of Conservation. The archaeological fort of Dun Eochla, which is also a National Monument is close by. There is also a wedge tomb located between the subject site and Dun Eochla Fort. 

Inishmore - On The Road

An Bord Pleanála  previously ruled that "'The introduction of a modern house on the site of the Lighthouse and located in close proximity to Oghil Fort which is a National Monument, would be out of character with and seriously detract from the historical importance of the
Lighthouse and from the archaeological significance, natural setting and
tourism potential of Oghill Fort. "

It went on to say it would "would seriously injure the visual
amenities of the area and be contrary to the proper planning and development."

In her report Ms Kernan noted that the "Aran Islands by their nature are rich in archaeological finds. As such it is a very sensitive archaeological site.




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