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18th Century ruins in Oranmore to be one of the highlights of auction



Ardfry House, Oranmore, Co. Galway

The historic Ardfry House in Oranmore is set to be one of the main attractions at a two-day auction to be held in Dublin later this month.

A total of more than 330 lots nationwide – with a combined value of more than €72 million – will go under the hammer on April 21 (residential) and April 23 (commercial) at the Allsop Space auctions in the RDS in Dublin.

Robert Hoban, Director of Auctions, said: “This significant offering presents a range of opportunities to Ireland’s hard pressed buyers, faced with a low level of supply.

“With background commentary centred on increasing levels of bank lending and pressure on interest rates, we expect this substantial collection of commercial and residential properties will be welcomed by those keen to invest in Ireland’s property market and trading economy.”

There are a total of 17 Galway properties on offer at the auctions, ten of which are residential.

A highlight will be the ruins Ardfry House in Oranmore – located on a peninsula directly across the bay from Galway Bay Golf Resort – which was built in 1770 by Joseph Blake, who later became Lord Wallscourt.

The sale comprises the detached period house, stone cottages, outbuildings and an orchard on 28.8 acres. The house itself extends to 16,700 square feet, while the walled orchard spans more than three acres.

There are also the remains of a moated castle from the 9th Century on the land, which also boasts 750 metres of sea frontage. The reserve price is between €1.8m and €2m.

In Corofin, in the Cloch Chara estate, 19 development sites will go under the hammer as one lot (within a development of 30 detached houses). The total site extends to just over five acres, and planning permission is valid until November 2015. The reserve price is €775,000 to €825,000.

In Ros Caoin, Roscam on the eastern side of the city, a three-bed semi-detached home has a reserve price of €190,000. Number 216 is a two-storey house measuring 1,044 sq ft.

A detached five-bed house will also go under the hammer at Raha in Rosscahill. It extends to a huge 4,380 sq ft and has large front gardens to the front and rear. The reserve price is €175,000.

In Barnaderg, a detached four-bed house completed to builder’s finish and set on 2.73 acres is also for sale. The house is 2,152 sq ft and the site also includes planning permission for a second property of similar size. The reserve is €80,000.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune

New President for Local Ireland



Left to right, Bob Hughes, Executive Director, Local Ireland, Dan Linehan, Head of Irish Times Regionals and Declan McGuire, Operations Manager of the Connacht Tribune.

The new President of Local Ireland, the association representing local news publishers around the country, is Head of Irish Times Regionals Dan Linehan.

Mr Linehan takes over the presidency from Declan McGuire of the Connacht Tribune. His appointment was confirmed at the recent Annual General Meeting of Local Ireland at Bloomfield House Hotel near Mullingar, Westmeath.

Mr Linehan, who has served as Vice President of the organisation for the last two years, said: “The coming years are a very important time for local publishers with many important issues to be addressed, including the implementation of the Future of Media Commission recommendations, defamation reform, the role and support for local publishers in public service reporting and helping publishers develop commercial digital offerings.”

Speaking at the AGM, Mr McGuire acknowledged the work done by the Executive in the past two years under the direction of Executive Director, Bob Hughes, on several projects related to the publishing industry but most especially the successful conclusion of the long-running campaign for the abolition of VAT on newspapers.

He also wished Mr Linehan the very best in his new role as President of the association for the next two years.

Mr Hughes thanked Mr McGuire for his leadership and support during his term of office and said he looked forward to working with Mr Linehan on the key policy priorities for the association, including Government supports, Government advertising, fair remuneration for content from the tech platforms and the reform of the legislation for defamation.

Local Ireland members also elected Seán Mahon, Managing Director of the Southern Star, as Vice President for the next two years.

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Connacht Tribune

Employers’ group hears of key challenges facing businesses in the region



Pictured at Regional Insight Series in the Galmont Hotel are: Trevor O’Rourke, (CEO, Fibre Networks Ireland); Senan Colleran, (Head ESB Assets, Generation & Trading, ESB); Eilish O'Sullivan, (Human Resources Director, Medtronic); Danny McCoy, (CEO, Ibec); Helen Leahy, (Head of Regional Policy, Ibec); Ruairi Conroy (Diligent Corporation) and Fergal O’Brien, (Executive Director of Lobbying & Influence, Ibec). PHOTO: Michael Dillon.

The shortage of affordable housing is the single biggest impediment in attracting and retaining workers in the West, according to business group Ibec.

At a ‘Regional Insights Series’ meeting in the Galmont Hotel in Galway last week, employers were told that capacity constraints and labour supply are the key challenges facing business growth in the region.

Ibec Head of Regional Policy Helen Leahy said: “There must be greater focus by government on enhancing quality of life issues such as housing and infrastructure which are driving labour shortages in the region.

“Ibec’s vision for the West is to realise its potential to become a globally competitive location. An inadequate supply of affordable housing is now the single largest impediment to attracting and retaining talented workers, without whom business investment and expansions are not possible.

“Labour shortages are a real concern for businesses in the region. People decide where to live and work based on quality of life and access to high quality services and amenities. Industry tends to follow talent, and in this regard, the region needs to have all the building blocks in place as the attraction and retention of world-class talent becomes increasingly competitive on a global level,” said Ms Leahy.

Amongst Ibec’s priorities for the West are:

  • Addressing housing and infrastructure challenges
  • Transitioning towards a new growth model with Net Zero energy powered by Atlantic offshore wind resources
  • Adapting businesses to the new economic realities
  • Enhancing capacity and skillsets to achieve sustainable development objectives
  • Investment in people and skills
  • Creating competitive advantage through digitalisation
  • Innovation as a key driver of productivity growth




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Connacht Tribune

Survey finds one in five retailers in Galway want to go fully cashless



Conor Quirke of BOI Payment Acceptance: move to card payments.

One in five Galway businesses want to go fully cashless, as the move towards card payments and tapping continues unabated post-Covid.

In all, 22% of Galway businesses would like to be fully cashless, according to a survey carried out by BOI Payment Acceptance (BOIPA), a provider of payment technology solutions, which asked Irish businesses about the current payment landscape as well as business confidence and concerns.

Over one-third (36%) of Galway businesses were unaware there is no contactless limit on mobile wallets – just below the national average – while 54% believe the increase in card over cash transactions has helped them run their business.

Six out of ten Galway businesses expect to grow this year despite the cost-of-living crisis and running costs dominating as key concerns; 62% believe their business will grow over the next twelve months despite global economic uncertainty.

Unsurprisingly cost-of-living increases and running costs were the main concerns the majority of businesses had.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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