Post Date : Tue 24 Jan 2017 11:53 AM
Sinn Féin MLA and newly announced party leader in the north Michelle O'Neill has said Sinn Féin are committed to equality, respect and integrity. 
Speaking in Stormont today, Ms O'Neill said; 
"For me to be selected to lead our party in the north is truly the biggest honour and privilege of my life.
"I have no doubt that I am following in the footsteps of a political giant in Martin McGuinness. And it's not just republicans that think that, as we have witnessed over the course of the last few weeks.  
"Over the course of the last number of weeks, while others shouted from the sidelines it was Sinn Féin that stood up and confronted corruption.  It was Sinn Féin that called a halt to the arrogance and the intolerance of the DUP.  
"Arrogance and disrespect has no place in society. Financial scandal, incompetence or waste of public money cannot be tolerated.
"In the aftermath of the election, there can and will be no return to the status quo. 
"Sinn Féin are only interested in participating in the power sharing institutions if they deliver for all of our citizens and operate on the basis of equality and respect.
"Sinn Fein is seeking in this election a stronger mandate to enter forthcoming political negotiations come March to defend your interests and put firmly the peoples social, economic and political interests first.
"What we are seeking is respect and equality for all of the people. And what we are seeking is integrity in the political institutions.  
"That is what Martin McGuinness stands for. That is what Sinn Fein stands for. That is what I stand for." 


Post Date : Mon 23 Jan 2017 10:54 AM

Sinn Féin MLA Gerry Kelly has condemned  last night's gun attack on a PSNI officer in north Belfast. 


Mr Kelly said; 


"I totally condemn this gun attack on a PSNI officer in north Belfast tonight. 


"It is my understanding that a police officer was shot in a drive by shooting on the Crumlin Road and that his injuries are not believed to be life threatening. 


"I hope that the injured officer will make a full and speedy recovery. 


"Those responsible for this attack are the same people who are attacking the local community. They have absolutely nothing to offer society and need to call a halt to these activities immediately. 


"I would call on anyone with information on this incident to bring it forward to the PSNI." 

Post Date : Mon 23 Jan 2017 10:47 AM

Social media sometimes gets a bad press for what is displayed through that medium. In the past week it presented itself in a good and proper way. It allowed us to see the past of a group of Castlewellan friends and the way they were. It allowed them to perhaps smile and say “god – do you remember that night”, “that was some holiday” or “look at the state of us that night”. Then they laugh and shake their heads.

Those sort of fantastic memories roll out for us all at some time or another. I hope the guys in the photographs won’t mind being referred to by their affectionate name “The Romper Room Gang”. For those of you too young to remember, Romper Room was a children’s TV show many years ago.

Those guys were all great friends. One of them was, of course, Mickey McAlinden who passed away last week at an all too early age. He fought illness over the past few years with the bravery and toughness that astounded us all. A fighter to the end. His close family and friends will only ever truly know just how brave he was.  The tributes to him have come from far and wide as well as from within our community.

If anyone ever marked Mickey in a match they will know he was small in physical stature. You will also know that he made up for it with quick thinking, cuteness and tigerish qualities. His presence around our club was and will be sadly missed by us all. The Executive Committee and Members wish to extend to his wife Madge and his son’s Niall and Gerard all our sincere sympathy for their loss. We also extend our sympathy to his brothers and sisters Gerry, Charlie, Rose, Rory, Patricia, Francey, Anne and the wide family circle at this time We also have in our thoughts his late twin brother James and parents Francey (Snr) and Maureen. Ar dheis de go raibh a anam dilis. 

A few weeks back we congratulated Sorcha McCarten on becoming a double dual All Star. This week Sorcha's incredible talents have gained her an All Ireland interprovinsional medal. After being selected to represent Ulster they have become champions beating Connacht 2-07 to 1-01 in the final set in Kinnegad. On behalf of the club and all the members we send a massive congratulations to Sorcha the players and management. 
There will be a "Back to Basics" coaching course at 7pm sharp on Thurs Jan 26th in St Malachys Primary School. We would request all juvenile coaches and and parent helpers from all four codes in our club to attend this course which will last for one and a half hours. No previous coaching experience is required.and we encourage as many as possible to attend
Anyone interested in helping with juvenile coaching please contact John O'Neill on 07711737610.
OnSaturday 11th February the club rooms will be holding a disco, back by popular demand on the night will be DJ Connor Moran. Drink promotions on the night and free entry before 10pm.
This weeks lotto numbers were 1,2,12,15, there was 2 £20 winners, Jackpot stands at £37500, tickets available around the town and in the clubrooms. 
Picture Sorcha McCarten (right) with the All Ireland Interprovincial trophy and fellow county player Laoise Duffy
Post Date : Mon 23 Jan 2017 10:41 AM

West Belfast Sinn Féin MLA Órlaithí Flynn has called on the DUP Education Minister, Peter Weir, to reverse the notice of withdrawal of funding for hundreds of Youth Workers right across the North.

On Friday Ms Flynn’s colleague, Fra McCann MLA, wrote to Peter Weir seeking an urgent meeting to discuss the funding withdrawal notice.

Ms Flynn said:

“Many youth groups received letters stating that funding given under the Extended Provision Youth Work programme were now being given notice of withdrawal by the Education Authority.

“My colleague, Fra McCann MLA, immediately requested a meeting with Peter Weir and Sinn Féin has been in close contact with Youth Workers to actively support them in resisting this decision.

“The DUP should roll back on this disgraceful notice of withdrawal of vital funding.

“Recently DUP minister Paul Givan withdrew funding for Irish language bursaries for disadvantaged children under the Liofa scheme.

“The DUP minister was forced to reverse that appalling decision after enormous pressure from Irish language campaigners and from Sinn Féin.

“It's important that political representatives, Youth Workers and community organisations in Belfast and right across the North keep the pressure on the DUP to reverse this disgraceful decision.

“This funding helps to support additional youth work, allowing youth organisations to employ hundreds of workers in the most socially deprived communities across the North.

“These Youth Workers carry out work which makes a huge positive difference to childrens’ lives.

“This was yet another attack by the DUP on working class children.

“Peter Weir needs to reverse the notices of withdrawal of funding and end DUP attacks on vulnerable communities.”

Post Date : Mon 23 Jan 2017 10:34 AM
Shane’s Gaelic for Girls
Our latest Shanes Gaelic for Girls programme began on Saturday morning at the club with 65 girls aged from 8 - 13 taking part. The coaching duties were carried out by 8 members of our senior ladies’ team and all the girls enjoyed a fun morning of activities. Afterwards everybody spent some time relaxing inside the club with refreshments. Many thanks to all the coaches and also to Pauline and Briege who handled registrations and refreshments. The programme continues next Saturday morning at the field from 11.00am - 12.15pm and all newcomers are welcome to join at any time.
Senior Ladies
Our senior ladies have a team meeting this coming Wednesday, 25th January at 7.00pm in the club-house to begin preparations for the coming year.
U16 Girls
Circuit training for our U16 girls will start next Tuesday, 31st Jan from 6.30pm to 7.45pm in Bessbrook Community Centre.
U16, U14 & 12 Boys
Training for all these age groups is scheduled to begin within the next few weeks – keep an eye on the notes for more details.
U14 & U 12 Girls
Management teams now have management teams appointed and training will be getting underway within the next few weeks – keep an eye on the notes for more details.
U10 Training
Training for our U10 footballers continues next Sunday morning at 11.00am at the field.
Training for our U6 footballers continues this Wednesday evening at 6.00pm in Bessbrook Community Centre and all new boys and girls are welcome to attend.
Meabh O’Neill’s Camogie
Training for all camogs begins again this coming Tuesday evening, 10th January in the sports hall in St Paul’s from 6.00pm – 7.00pm. All new members from age 4 and upwards are welcome to attend.
Membership Rates for 2017
Club membership is now due and the rates for 2017 are as follows:
Senior Members: £30.00
Cairde Members: £15.00
OAPs: £15.00
U18s: £15.00 for first player in a family, £10.00 for every other player
All membership must be paid before 31st March 2017.
Scór Sinsear
If any club member over the age of 17 has any interest in representing the club in this year's Scór Sinsear in any of the following competitions:
1. Rince Foirne/Céilí or Figure Dancing
2. Amhránaíocht Aonair/Solo Singing - only one person required
3. Aithriseoireacht/Scéalaíocht Recitation/Storytelling - only one person required
4. Ceol Uirlise/Instrumental Music
5. Léiriú/Stage performance
6. Bailéad Ghrúpa/Ballad Group
7. Rince Seit/Set Dancing
8. Tráth na gCeist Ard Mhacha /Armagh GAA Quiz (3 person)
Please contact Mícheál Brady via email-
Well Done
Well done to Balithin Mackin and Jessica Watters who were part of the All-Ireland winning Ulster Ladies School’s team at the week-end – maith sibh girls.
Cairde Sheain Ui Neill
The club is actively encouraging more people to sign up to the Cairde Sheáin Uí Néill scheme at a cost £10.00 per month. This money goes directly towards club development schemes and over the past number of years has helped to upgrade the playing surface on the main field, construct a new training pitch, partly contribute to the new concrete driveway and will hopefully help to begin construction on the new walkway around the field.
At £10.00 per month we feel it is a very easy, worthwhile and beneficial scheme to sign up to. For further information, please contact Brendy Osborne (07543 806274) or pm the Shane O'Neill's Facebook page.
Last week’s winning lotto numbers were 11, 15, 28 & 29. There were no jackpot winners and 1 x lucky dip winners. The jackpot now stands at £4,900.
Can you please include the attached picture with our club notes:
Participants at the Shanes’ Gaelic for Girls on Saturday morning
Post Date : Fri 20 Jan 2017 12:05 PM

The Southern Health & Social Care Trust has achieved Platinum status at the recent 2016 Northern Ireland Environmental Benchmarking Survey, the highest scoring level. 

The Survey, which is run by Business in the Community, recognises and rewards those organisations that are going above and beyond their legal requirements to minimise their environmental impacts and better manage their resources. 

Through its Sustainability Strategy 2020, the Trust promotes a proactive approach to management of its environment and aims to maximise benefits and minimise risks to clients, staff, visitors, contractors and others.  

The Trust’s principal environmental objective is to promote the achievement of “Single Planet Living” in all Trust activities and across its wider sphere of influence. The concept of “Single Planet Living” is based on the principle of everyone living within their available environmental resources i.e. living a sustainable lifestyle. 

Currently, in Northern Ireland, we consume resources (energy, food, materials) at a rate which would require a country three times the size of Northern Ireland to support the
on-going replenishment of those resources. If everyone on earth consumed resources at the same rate that we do then three planets would be needed to generate adequate resources to sustain our lifestyle and consumer habits.

The Trust has been able to reduce its carbon emissions through a number of initiatives over the past few years and continues to look for further opportunities to improve efficiencies and reduce its impact on the environment – releasing vital resources to improve patient care and protecting our environment at the same time.

The Southern Health and Social Care Trust is working in partnership with Power NI to educate staff, patients, visitors and contractors on how they can improve their energy efficiency at home and in the workplace. Click here to see when an Energy Roadshow is coming to your location.

To find out who else participated in the Northern Ireland Environmental Benchmarking Survey and how they scored, visit

Post Date : Fri 20 Jan 2017 11:58 AM

O'Dowd expresses shock after woman's body found

SinnFéin MLA John O'Dowd has expressed his shock after the discovery of a woman's body in Lurgan in the early hours of Friday morning. 

The Upper Bann MLA said:

"The news this morning will obviously be a shock to the entire community. 

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this time. 

"I would appeal for anyone with information to bring it forward to the PSNI." 

Post Date : Fri 20 Jan 2017 09:49 AM

 Dear All 

Susan Lynch who was last seen in Warrenpoint town centre on Wednesday 18th January has been found safe and well. 

Thank you to everyone for their help.

Post Date : Thu 19 Jan 2017 10:22 AM

Sinn Féin MLA Conor Murphy said the DUP economy minister Simon Hamilton has bowed down to public pressure on publishing the names of the beneficiaries of the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme.

However, he said that postponing publication until January 25th smacks of a DUP effort to frustrate proper scrutiny of the list of RHI beneficiaries.

Mr Murphy said:

“Sinn Féin has called for the names of the beneficiaries of the RHI scheme to be published immediately by the DUP economy minister.

“In the light of ongoing revelations around the DUP’s handling of the RHI scheme the public want to know are there any conflicts of interest as a result of family, business or political connections.

“Simon Hamilton has at long last bowed to public pressure and committed to releasing the names of beneficiaries.

“However, he has put back publication of the list to 25th January in what looks like an effort to avoid proper scrutiny.

“The public demands full transparency and accountability around the RHI scheme, which has been associated with allegations of corruption. An independent investigation is the best way to achieve this. 

“The DUP have acted with arrogance and contempt for the public throughout the RHI debacle.

“The people now have an opportunity to have their say on the DUP’s RHI fiasco and their arrogance and disrespect for whole sections of our community.”  

Post Date : Tue 17 Jan 2017 01:52 PM

NI's leading pro-European organisation concerned at NI leaving the Single Market with no functioning administration

Northern Ireland's leading pro-European organisation, the European Movement in Northern Ireland (EMNI), has reacted to the developing news following the Prime Minister's Brexit speech and the collapse of the NI Executive at Stormont. 

EMNI Chair Ian Parsley said: 

"We are deeply concerned that the collapse of the Northern Ireland Executive with no pre-existing 'Brexit Plan' will result in Northern Ireland's distinct interests not being heard as Article 50 is triggered. 

"The Prime Minister's statement puts to an end the fantasy that the UK could remain in the Single Market outside the EU. This was never a realistic option, yet many senior politicians and civic voices presented it as one during the referendum campaign. 

"Yet again, therefore, we see that the referendum outcome, based as it was on a hugely misleading campaign, is leading to a fundamental change in social model which will be to the detriment of public services and of business's ability to trade with our main market. Additionally, as nearly three quarters of imports to Northern Ireland come from the EU, we will see the cost of living rise." 

In relation to the news that elections will take place on March 2 in Northern Ireland, Ian added: 

"It is essential, therefore, that stability is returned to the Northern Ireland Executive after the election so that Ministers can challenge this folly on all our behalves." 

The Deputy Chair of EMNI, Ciaran Hanna welcomed the commitment by the PM to try and keep the Common Travel Area between Ireland and the UK and the decision to give Parliament a vote on the final UK/EU deal. 

"The last thing we need is a hard border back in Northern Ireland, so we will have to keep up the pressure during the negotiations. The collapse of the institutions shows just how irresponsible it was for the DUP to argue for Leaving the EU. Instability was the last thing we needed. Where is the plan? Businesses need to know what will happen now we're leaving the Single European Market and Customs Union." 

Ciaran added there should be a referendum on the deal: 

 "The people should have their say on the final UK/EU deal."