DkIT Sport to open to the public in June

DkIT Sport will be located at the former JJB facility at Dundalk Retail Park

DkIT Sport will be located at the former JJB facility at Dundalk Retail Park

The Holohan Leisure Group will manage the new DkIT Sport facility – formerly JJB – when it opens its doors to the public in June.

The centre at Dundalk Retail Park has had a limited opening to students in recent weeks and will include a 20m swimming pool, changing rooms, steam room, jacuzzi, gym area, aerobic studio, indoor cycling studio, 10 indoor sports pitches and a dedicated high performance strength and conditioning training zone when fully operational.

The strength and conditioning training zone is the first of its kind in the county while the gym will include brand new, gold standard, Precor gym equipment.

The aim is to make DkIT sport “the best kitted out gym in Ireland.”

The indoor sports pitches will be available to local sports teams, clubs and the public for recreational use, as well as catering for children’s birthday parties.

A full timetable of group exercise classes will also be available.

The leisure centre will open on Monday June 29 and club membership options will be available to members of the general public.

A pre-opening membership sale is expected in early to mid June and will include use of the gym, studios, swimming pool, steam room and jacuzzi.

An Bord Pleanála give go ahead for new Maxol filling station on Dublin Road

The site of the former Texaco Southend Service Station on the Dublin Road, which Maxol has been given the go ahead to develop

The site of the former Texaco Southend Service Station on the Dublin Road, which Maxol has been given the go ahead to develop

Maxol have won the right to open up a new filling station at the Southend Services Station on the Dublin Road, opposite Dundalk IT.

Louth County Council initially granted conditional planning permission for the development at the site of the former Texaco station in October last year. However, Niall Clarke Oils Ltd – who also operate a filling station on the Dublin Road – lodged an appeal to An Bord Pleanála.

However, the planning authority opted to uphold the council’s decision, deciding that the “proposed development would not seriously injure the amenities of the area, would not adversely affect the character of the area, would be acceptable in terms of parking, traffic safety and convenience and would not, therefore, be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area.”

The opening of the filling station is still subject to 18 conditions being met but none should pose a problem.

Maxol hope to erect a new supermarket on the 0.25 hectare site, including an ATM, deli, ancillary stores and offices and internal and external seating areas.

There would also be a new forecourt canopy, rollover carwash, equipment store, floodlighting and security cameras, a rear compound area, underground fuel tanks, a petrol interceptor, a carwash interceptor, an aluminium clad illuminated gantry sign and associated services including drainage works and alterations to the existing access to the public road.

In January Maxol announced a new partnership with Dundalk IT as part of the institute’s Global Student Project 2015.

The cross college collaboration project will see DKIT students join forces with students from universities in USA and Australia to develop a new mobile app for Moreish, Maxol’s new convenience food and café brand.

Using digital communication facilities and on-line project management software, the teams of students will work together to design the Moreish café app for Maxol. Students will test the app among the student and staff base at DKIT, with the intention to expand its use across the 30 Moreish deli cafés that are expected to be open by the end of 2015. Potential built-in features of the app will include; food ordering, delivery, payment and a loyalty programme.

Former Dunnes employee dismissed after strike to appear on RTÉ tonight

Tony Malone

Tony Malone

The local Dunnes Stores employee who claims he was unfairly dismissed from his job in the Marshes Shopping Centre just a day after going on strike earlier this month will be interviewed on RTÉ television tonight.

Tony Malone, from Muirhevnamor, will appear on Claire Byrne Live on RTÉ One at 9.35pm.

Last week the Mandate Trade Union said they were taking legal advice over Dunnes’ decision to let Mr Malone go from his employment just 24 hours after the strike on Holy Thursday, April 2nd.

While the case is still under investigation, a number of locals have vowed to boycott Dunnes over the treatment of Mr Malone, with staff nationally considering proposals to strike again, most likely on the May Bank Holiday weekend.

Mr Malone told the ‘This Week’ programme on RTÉ radio at the weekend that he would choose to go on strike again if he was still working at the company.

Asked if his dismissal could scare other workers from further industrial action, Mr Malone said: “It may scare the ones that never striked, but for the ones who did strike, I think it will just add some fuel to the fire.”

Mandate Trade Union to investigate claims that Dunnes Stores worker in Dundalk was unfairly dismissed a day after strike

Tony Malone (right) on the picket line last week with Mandate's local rep John Callan

Tony Malone (right) on the picket line last week with Mandate’s local rep John Callan

The Mandate Trade Union are set to investigate claims that a local Dunnes Stores employee had his contract terminated illegally a day after last week’s strike.

Tony Malone from Muirhevnamor joined colleagues on the picket line on Holy Thursday, April 2nd, only to be let go from his job in the Marshes Shopping Centre 24 hours later.

He said he was called into the office after lunchtime on Good Friday by the store manager and HR manager, who informed him he was being let go “due to the downturn in business.” He said this came as a surprise to him as his review with management had gone well a few weeks earlier.

In an interview with The Irish Times, Mr Malone said he was still “mad” at what had happened.

Tony Malone spoke to The Irish Times about the matter in a video interview

Tony Malone spoke to The Irish Times about the matter in a video interview

Mandate’s Divisional Organiser Willie Hamilton said: “We’re investigating the facts around the unfair dismissal of Tony that happened the day after the industrial dispute we had on the 2nd of April. We will be taking legal advice in respect of that and we will also be consulting with our members who came out on strike on that day as to what action they believe is appropriate in these circustances.”

Mr Hamilton claimed there had been a “range of retribution” across the country against those who went on strike.

Mr Malone, who first started working in Dunnes four and a half years ago, said he believes he signed a full-time contract last September. It is understood, however, that Dunnes believe this may have only been a short-term contract after a brief break in his employment with the company.

Dunnes refused the opportunity to comment to The Irish Times.

You can view Mr Malone’s video interview here.

Russell’s to open in the next fortnight

russellsRussell’s Saloon is expected to open its doors inside the next fortnight.

The pub at 28 Park Street is well known as The Bus Stop Bar but has been closed for some time.

Now though, Greg Gormley has taken it over and is completely redesigning the premises.

Greg is well known in the local pub game from running The Castle Bar in Seatown, with Russell’s expected to stock a number of craft beers when it opens. It will also carry a range of fine wines and serve cocktails.

The bar are currently hiring bar staff, floor staff, waiters and waitresses and door persons.

Russell’s Tavern first opened as a bar in 1907 and has been a constant on Park Street since then having also operated as a travel agency for some years. Indeed, its clock still remains one of the most prominent features on the street.

The building was sold last summer by local estate agents Property Partners Laurence Gunne, with Gormley understood to have paid below its €100,000 asking price.

Russell's as it looked last summer at the time of its sale

Russell’s as it looked last summer at the time of its sale

New café opens outside Dundalk

11075139_793072254114646_2474596390039041131_nA new café has opened along the border, just outside Dundalk today.

Benny’s Café is located in the Jade Centre in Jonesborough and will be open from 9am to 6pm daily.

Work has been ongoing at the café for some weeks and people are invited to call in and check it out over the coming days.

You can also follow the café’s Facebook page here.

Gardaí called to Marshes during Dunnes strike

Local senator Mary Moran was one of several politicians who supported those on strike yesterday

Local senator Mary Moran was one of several politicians who supported those on strike yesterday

Gardaí were called to the Marshes yesterday to ensure access to the shopping centre was left unblocked by Dunnes Stores workers who were striking there.

Dunnes staff and Mandate union officials were joined by local politicians and supporters throughout the day as part of their protest against 15-hour contracts with no fixed working hours.

Both the Dunnes Stores in the Marshes and Ard Easmuinn were forced to close earlier than planned as a result of the strike action, which also took place at the Neighbourhood Centre in Muirhevnamor.

H&M coming to Dundalk

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The Dorothy Perkins/Burton store in the Marshes will close to make way for H&M

Clothing retailer H&M are on their way to Dundalk.

Their new local store, which has been in the pipeline for over a year, will be open in the Marshes Shopping Centre for the start of summer.

The bad news for local shoppers is that the new H&M will be located in the current Dorothy Perkins/Burton outlet, which will close next month.

A series of alterations will be made to the outlet at unit 2/3 which will see the outlet greatly expanded with a mezzanine level introduced.

Are you excited by the news?

Dundalk IT to host industry open day

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Dundalk IT will host an on-campus Industry Open Day on Wednesday April 15th from 12 noon to 5.30pm.

On the day local industries and businesses can find out how to work more closely with the institute as well as meet students and graduates to explore employment and placement opportunities.

The event will showcase student projects, placements, applied research projects, graduate placement and training provision with industry.

For further information or to register for the event click here.