We look at the latest news highlights from Ireland
Gabriel Byrne backs campaign to save The Quiet Man station
The railway station that features in the opening scene of The Quiet Man is at risk, ad Irish actor Gabriel Byrne is backing a campaign to save it. It desperately needs funds to restore the building’s roof from imminent collapse.
The station, in Ballyglunin Co. Galway has been a popular tourist destination for fans of the 1952 film, which starred Maureen O’Hara and John Wayne. Before O’Hara’s death two years ago, she said that the station was ‘truly a part of Ireland’s greatest cinematic history’.
A crowdfunding campaign was set up online last week, but is still nearly a third short of its target goal. The station was fully closed in 1976, after being used for over one hundred years.
Other celebrities have backed the campaign including Liam Nielson and Saw Doctors lead guitarist Leo Moran who recently starred in a short video to raise awareness for the appeal.
Dublin Literary Award winner will use prize money to build library
Author Jose Eduardo Agualusa will use his prize money from his recent Dublin award to build a library in Mozambique. The 56-year-old Angolan walked away with the International Dublin Literary Award last week for his novel A General Theory of Oblivion.
He fought off nine other entries to win, but was convinced that Mozambican author, and his close friend, Mia Couto would have won for his book Confession of the Lioness. Agualusa lives on a small island off of Mozambique at present, and says he will use the money to build a library so he can stock his own personal collection there and open it to the public.
He will also give a quarter of the money to his translator Daniel Hahn. His novel tells the story of a Portugese woman who isolates herself in her apartment to escape the Angolan civil war.
The main character Ludo relies on her only companion Phantom, an albino dog, for company.
“The main character came to me some years ago when I was living in Rwanda,” he said. “It was a very hard time politically. I was working as a journalist and I had some problems with the government s things were very difficult.”
Five-foot long exotic snake found in Dublin tree
A couple of Dubliners got a shock last weekend when they were out walking and found a five-foot long albino corn snake in a tree in Ballybrack. It was placed in the care of Bairbe O’Malley Veterinary Hospital in Bray, Co. Wicklow, but no one has come forward to claim ownership of the snake from their social media call-out as yet.
The animal has been confirmed as healthy by medical professionals but they are worried that that the animal has been abandoned.
Veterinary nurse Leonie Sunderland told Newstalk: “What he was doing up a tree in Ballybrack, we’re not sure. Given that we haven’t heard anything from any worried owner, he may also have been abandoned.”
Ms Sunderland said they will look to set the snake up with a new owner if he is not claimed soon, but its new home will need to tick boxes of ‘heat, temperature and humidity’.
Corn snakes have a lifespan of between five and 10 years but can even live longer when given proper care and the breed is one of the most popular due to their docile disposition.
Naturally nervous and defensive, once they learn to trust their owner they become very used to handling.