City Beat: Fun and Flavour for all the family at annual county fair
NEWBRIDGE House is gearing up to host this year's county fair.
The Flavour of Fingal County Show will take place on June 27 and 28 in the historic estate.
Model and self-confessed foodie Thalia Heffernan was on hand to launch the event.
There are 600 farmers in the area who are engaged in agricultural production of all types.
The north Dublin region produces a third of the country's fruit, vegetables and potatoes so the show is a perfect fit, according to organisers.
A food village will be set-up in the walled gardens of the Donabate estate during the event.
Some of the region's top chefs will also be on hand to provide cookery demonstrations over the weekend.
Forty artisan food producers and local businesses will host stands there during the weekend so visitors can get a real taste of Fingal.
Nutritionist Gaye Godkin and the Fingal Ethnic Food Network are among those who will be giving demonstrations.
Visitors will also be given the chance to sample some handmade sausages as this year the semi-finals of the All Ireland Craft Butchers Home Cook 2015 competition will be staged there.
People will be asked to vote for their favourite who will then progress to the next round.
Newbridge House has already played host to actors Stephen Fry and Chloe Sevingy this year but during the fair there will be special guests of a different kind.
In true county show style the fair will also feature a showcase of Ireland's most-groomed cows.
"The livestock competition at the Flavours of Fingal County Show makes for a fascinating insight into what still is a highly competitive arena," said a spokesperson for the event.
In addition to livestock and sheep competitions, attendees are invited to watch equestrian contests as well as sheepdog trials.
There will also be sheep-shearing and geese herding displays during the show.
The show is orgainsed by Fingal County Council in association with Fingal Farmers, Fingal Tourism and Newbridge House and Farm.
Tickets cost €10 for a one-day adult admission including two kids for free.
A full programme of events can be found at www.flavoursoffingal.com.
Concerns over plans for new hospital site
RESIDENTS in Portrane and Donabate are unhappy with plans to build the new National Forensic Hospital in the grounds of St Ita's Hospital as they fear the construction period will lead to traffic mayhem.
An Bord Pleanala has granted permission for the construction of a new 120-bed facility and two 10-bed specialist units there to replace the Central Mental Hospital in Dundrum.
It is hoped that the state-of-the-art hospital will be operational by 2018.
Minister for Health Leo Varadkar said that the new hospital would be "hugely significant in terms of developments in mental health".
However, residents of the seaside villages nearby are concerned as there is only one road onto the peninsula.
An alternative haul route for the construction phase was suggested via the New Road but this was not seen as a viable option by the planning authority.
"The community is very happy in many ways to support the development at St Ita's but they are extremely disappointed at the decision after numerous submissions were made on the issue," Cllr Adrian Henchy told the Herald.
The Fianna Fail councillor said that locals were dismayed that there was to be no significant community gain from the development and added that they have serious concerns about congestion problems.
"There has been a commitment that construction vehicles will not be trying to gain access at the same time as school traffic or in the evenings but we are keen to see how this would be enforced," he added.
A meeting of the Donabate-Portrane Community Council and a number of other local groups was held on Monday night so that residents could discuss their options.
A judicial review is one of the options under consideration by locals but this course of action has not yet been decided on.
Beach being 'ruined' by raw sewage
A SCENIC beach in Howth is being "ruined" by raw sewage.
A broken sewage pipe has been leaking onto the stony beach at Doldrum Bay for four years.
Local resident Patrick Jackson (right) has painted the pipe white so that it can be easily seen and he has also begun daily clean-ups.
He has been documenting his efforts with pictures .
"It's ruining what is really a gorgeous beach," he told the Herald.
"Toilet paper and other sanitary items can be seen along the beach as a result and it stinks.
"My goal is to be able to come here with my kids but it's not fit for public use at the moment.
"The historic outfall at this location while unacceptable is arising from a very small number of properties," an Irish Water spokesperson said.
"Irish Water is investigating a number of options to address this problem with Fingal County Council," they added.
More than €100k in funding allocated for repair of historic pier
THE historic pier in Balbriggan is to receive more than €100,000 for repairs.
Some €112,000 will be allocated to Fingal County Council from the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marines.
The money will be used to repair the outer harbour wall.
Fine Gael TD for the area Alan Farrell welcomed the news that Balbriggan was one of 25 harbours around the country that would benefit from the cash boost.
“This funding, for the repair and development of Balbriggan harbour, is crucial in terms of ensuring its long-term sustainability,” he said.
“Seaside communities are proud of their harbours and we consider them to be a focal point of our local landscape.”
The investment is part of the Harbour and Coastal Infrastructure Development Programme, whereby the Government co-funds up to 75pc of the total cost of approved projects, with the county council providing the balance.”
Meanwhile, work is also set to begin to replace the iconic lighthouse dome in the harbour.
The dome was removed in the 1960s due to corrosion and locals have long campaigned to have it restored.
It is hoped that the lighthouse project will be completed by the end of the year.
Councillor Tony Murphy has lead the charge on the campaign.
“I feel that Balbriggan has so much to offer and has a lot of potential as a tourism destination, but we need serious investment to compete for this market,” he said.