Increase in demand is leading to boom in the cultivation of cannabis
Anomalies in Ireland's drug laws and the huge demand for cannabis have led to a boom in the cultivation of the drug. In 2004, during the Celtic Tiger, only 36 people were prosecuted for growing cannabis. Last year there were 582 prosecutions, most small-time operations but included several dozen industrial-scale foreign-run operations.
Surveys have found that 18 per cent of Irish teens have used cannabis, placing above the 17 per cent European average. Six per cent of Irish teenagers have admitted to using drugs other than cannabis at some point in their lives.
Meanwhile, a man in his early 30s was arrested last night after a cannabis plantation was found in Co Galway.
The Galway Divisional Drug Unit, with the Garda National Drug Unit, searched a house in Cummer, near Tuam, at around 5pm. Officers found cannabis plants with a potential street value of approximately €280,000.
Teens' binge-drink culture laid bare
A NEW report by the European Schools Survey Project on Alcohol, says Irish teens drink less often than their EU contemporaries. However, when they do drink, they tend to consume higher quantities than the European average.
Talks over future of Martello Tower
AS Bloomsday approaches, one of Dublin's main Joycean attractions -- the Martello Tower in Sandycove -- has been closed for weeks as negotiations continue over its future.
Locals have reported busloads of tourists and others on foot arriving at the famous tower, where James Joyce spent six nights in 1904, only to find it closed.
A note on the tower advises people to ring a number for an appointment to visit. Tourism websites advertising the tower misleadingly give opening times and ticket prices.
A spokesman for Failte Ireland indicated that talks were under way between them and Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council over the future running of the museum.
He described the closure as a "temporary situation".
The tower and museum will open from June 12 -16, from 10am to 5pm. On Bloomsday, it will be open from 8am to 6pm with a reading from Ulysses by actor Barry McGovern.
Nursing homes mark 50th Congress
The 50th Eucharistic Congress is being celebrated in nursing homes with a special commemorative Mass during the coming week, the week preceding the Congress.
The theme of the Mass links into the daily Congress themes: 'Communion with Christ and with one another in the sacrament of anointing of the sick in places of care'.
SIMI reveals drop in new car sales
Figures just released by the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI) show a decline of 18 per cent in new car sales in May. For the year, sales are down by 8.7 per cent.
The latest retail sales figures issued by the CSO show an annual reduction of 2.7 per cent in the volume of retail sales in April, and the registration statistics for May indicate that there is no sign of this depressed sentiment abating.
No winner of €5.4m Lotto jackpot
THERE was no winner of last night's €5,397,920 Lotto jackpot. The numbers were 4, 10, 16, 22, 40, 42 (bonus 15). There was no winner of Friday's Euromillions draw either -- so Tuesday's draw will now be for €135m plus.
There was one Match 5+bonus winner who gets €25k; 53 Match 5s (€1,546 each); 123 Match 4+bonus (€167); 2,571 Match 4s (€49); 3,453 Match 3+bonus (€24); and 40,802 Match 3s (€5). The Lotto Plus 1 numbers were 7, 11, 16, 28, 39, 43 (bonus 18) and Lotto Plus 2 numbers were 12, 13, 16, 35, 40, 44 (bonus 38).
In the UK draw for stg£4m, the numbers were 16, 18, 20, 25, 29, 34 (bonus 15).
Journalist remembers 'Darlin' Dublin'
DUBLIN in the rare ould times is recalled in a book by top sports journalist Bill Kelly, reprinted by Poolbeg Press.
Me Darlin' Dublin's Dead and Gone recounts his life from his tough childhood in Dublin to becoming one of Ireland's foremost journalists, best known for his Sunday Press soccer column as Big Bill, which ran for more than 30 years.
Three hosting events for football fans
Three is hosting three free outdoor events so fans can watch the European Championships on a big screen. Three on The Quay will take place on June 10, 14 and 18 at The Big Screen at George's Dock, IFSC. The festival will be open to all ages from 5pm with a host of entertainment, food and drink concessions, penalty shoot-out games and DJs.
A limited number of places are available on the floating platform at George's Dock via 3football.ie.
Famed Cork impresario Lucey dies
ONE of the original music men of Cork, venue owner Jerry Lucey, passed away this weekend. At one time or another the owner of Redbarn and The Majorca Ballroom in Crosshaven, and the Grand Parade Hotel and the famed Sir Henrys in Cork City, he hosted bands from U2 and Nirvana right back to Dickie Rock and The Dixies in the Sixties.
Greatly missed by his sister, daughters, grandchildren and great-children, all are welcome to the removal tomorrow at O'Connor's, North Gate Bridge at 6pm. Requiem Mass on Tuesday at noon in St Patrick's, Lower Glanmire Road, is followed by the funeral to St Finbarr's Cemetery.
'Wild Geese' for top hurling festival
A contingent of the US Marine Corps known as The Wild Geese will take part in the International Festival of Hurling in Semple Stadium, Thurles on July 13 and 14.
Some 1,000 players will be involved in the festival, organised by the legendary Thurles Sarsfields GAA club.
The Marines are based in Suffolk, England. Taking part in the festival in Thurles, birthplace of the GAA and European Town of Sport for 2012, will be teams from America, England, Northern Ireland, Brussels and the Republic.
Maureen, 87, ready for 18th marathon
Maureen Armstrong of Upperchurch, Thurles, Co Tipperary, will tomorrow compete in her 18th Dublin City Women's Mini-Marathon-- at 87 years of age.
Tomorrow she will be joined by her daughters Martina and Marian, as well as her granddaughter Sinead Heffernan and Sinead's six-month-old twins, Ellie and Aidan, "who will probably be walked in a buggy". Other members of the clan will be walking in aid of the Irish Cancer Society. Full round-up of bank holiday events including mini-marathon, Page 26
Woman leaves will valued at €2.2m
Mairead O'Toole of Coliemore Road, Dalkey, left €2,253,427 in her will, which went to probate last week.
Other wills: Christina Wallace, Baily, Dublin, €1,905,781; Robert Deane, general labourer, Inchdoney, Clonakilty, Cork, €987,202; Lucy Hughes, Malahide Rd, €696,126.
The value of wills includes property, including the family home, and should not be regarded as cash amounts