Northern Ireland

Weekly newspaper review: Maiden voyage, gas explosion and new CCTV

Front page of Newry Democrat, Tuesday 25 July Image copyright Newry Democrat
Front page Londonderry Sentinel Wednesday 26 July 2017 Image copyright Londonderry Sentinel
Front page Mid-Ulster Mail Thursday 27 July 2017 Image copyright Mid-Ulster Mail
Front page Ballymena Guardian, Thursday 27 July Image copyright Ballymena Guardian
Front page Lurgan Mail Thursday 27 July 2017 Image copyright Lurgan Mail

Boats, community service and security cameras make the headlines locally this week.

The Carlingford Ferry's maiden voyage makes the front page of the Newry Democrat.

The ferry, which transports passengers from Greencastle to Greenore, delayed its first departure due to strong winds.

Chief Executive Pamela Houston said: "It was a force-eight gale, south-easterly coming into the lough.

"We were waiting for the wind to settle down a bit."

Ms Houston added: "She's very steady out in the wind but it was our launch day and we wanted to make sure that everything was fine."

Image caption It has taken 10 years of planning to complete the new ferry service

The Londonderry Sentinel reports on renewed calls for a fresh investigation into the 1972 Claudy bombings.

It comes ahead of Monday's 45th anniversary which will be marked by family and friends of those killed in the attack.

Nine people died, and others were injured in the three-bomb atrocity on 31 July 1972.

A previous investigation into the bombing was suspended in 2013 and families were told it would not reconvene unless new information came to light.

Sixteen-year-old William Temple was one of those killed.

Image copyright Victim's families
Image caption Nine people died when three bombs exploded in Claudy

His brother, David told the Sentinel: "My family, and I know others feel likewise, want Claudy to be given the focus and priority that it never has been.

"We want a proper investigation which has a starting point of going to and uncovering the truth of what happened.

"I want those who carried out the bombings to be held publicly accountable for their actions," he added.

Image caption The explosion happened at Johnston Shore near Carrybridge in Fermanagh

Boat explosion

The Fermanagh Herald reports that one man was injured after a gas bottle exploded on a boat near Lisbellaw, County Fermanagh.

Emergency services were called to Johnston Shore on the Inishmore road at about 11:00 BST on Wednesday 19 July.

The man was treated for burn injuries after he was pulled from the boat by a bystander.

The Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue (NIFRS) said it highlighted the importance that "gas appliances on boats are installed and maintained by a qualified engineer and that carbon monoxide alarms are fitted".

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The cyber-attackers were based in China

A coffee shop owner has told the Lurgan Mail of the disruption computer hackers caused to his business.

Ben Nelson owns Love Coffee, based in the town's Main Street.

The Magheralin man's iCloud account had been accessed in China, resulting in him being locked out of his laptops.

Mr Nelson told the paper he used the technology to promote his business, describing the cyber-attack as a "massive inconvenience".

He has since been able to get one of the laptops fixed.

New Hotel

A new 100-bedroom hotel could be coming to the outskirts of Rostrevor, according to the Newry Democrat.

Plans for the new £14m project were submitted to the Planning Service last month.

Newry, Mourne and Down District Council will now decide whether the application should be given the green light.

The site, located on the Greenpark Road, was granted permission for a 50-bed hotel in 2011.

An equestrian centre on the plot is expected to be relocated within the 35-acre site.

Repaying society

The Londonderry Sentinel reports that offenders on community service have completed about £77,000 worth of unpaid work in the north west in 2016/17.

Figures released by the Probation Board reveal offenders worked a total of 10,300 hours helping the local community.

Chief executive of the Probation Service, Cheryl Lamont, told the paper that community service enables offenders to "pay something back to society".

She added that it also helped develop skills to prevent them continuing in a cycle of crime,

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The exact locations of the cameras are not known

New CCTV cameras aimed at targeting crime are to be installed across every town in Mid Ulster, according to the Mid-Ulster Mail.

Twenty-six of the devices will be watched by staff in Magherfelt who will cooperate with the police.

The exact locations are not yet known.

It is understood that about £90,000 will be spent in coming months to improve CCTV in the area.

Making the old, brand new

In County Antrim, a man from Glenarm has fulfilled his dream of restoring a 10ft (3.05m) water wheel, reports the Ballymena Guardian.

David Alexander spent weeks undertaking the project with friend, Robert Kidd, from Broughshane.

The water wheel was originally at the side of his mother's house, until he removed it in 1992 with the intent to rebuild it.

Having now completed the restoration, he hopes to place it in a river in his own garden.

He told the paper: "I intend to work on this during my retirement and it would be great to see the wheel driving the machinery it was intended for.

"If it wasn't for Robert this wouldn't have happened. He is a source of inspiration," he added.

Image caption There are growing concerns about the walk's popularity

The Fermanagh Herald reports that the council are looking at alternative parking arrangements at Cuilcagh Mountain Boardwalk.

It comes after the current car park was closed to visitors following a land dispute with a farmer who lives in the area on Thursday 20 July.

A spokesperson for Fermanagh and Omagh District Council said: "The council is interacting with various statutory bodies to investigate parking opportunities in this area.

"However as much of the adjacent land is 'protected' by designation, then opportunities may be limited."

Mountain Rescue

The Ballymena Guardian also reports on the rescue of a woman who fell down a steep bank while trying to help her dog in Glenariff Forest Park in County Antrim.

It is understood that the rescue operation took three hours after the woman ended up beside a river at the bottom of a gully.

The North West Mountain Rescue team used mountaineering equipment to lower members of the ambulance service to the site.

The woman was hoisted up the bank on a stretcher before she was carried a kilometre to Laragh Lodge and then taken to hospital.

A spokesperson described it as "a very successful operation all round".