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Clare Local Studies Project

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Urban Council Honours CLASP
The Clare Champion, Friday, 25th December 1998

The Clare Local Studies Project (CLASP), which has developed an awareness of and has increased access to sources for local studies in Clare, has been honoured by Ennis UDC.

On Friday 19th December, the council held a civic reception for CLASP, the independent organisation based at Library Headquarters, Ennis, which has gone from strength to strength in co-operation with Clare County Library service. The chairperson of Ennis UDC, Mary Coote-Ryan, said CLASP had been responsible for enhancing services at libraries throughout County Clare. She congratulated the group on their successes including winning the FÁS Community Initiative regional award and the Special Merit Award at the national finals.

CLASP offers a comprehensive training package for all trainees. Practical training to date at the project has afforded the employees of the project the opportunity to develop computer and inter-personal skills and carry out historical research. Now in its fourth year, CLASP has produced seven publications and six exhibitions which according to Councillor Coote-Ryan “is a major achievement”.

In his first civic function before leaving to take up his new position as County Manager in Carlow, Town Manager Tom Dowling paid a glowing tribute to the outstanding efforts of everybody associated with CLASP. He predicted that other counties would follow Clare’s example and endeavour to implement a project such as the Clare LocAl Studies Project. “I am extremely proud of the achievements of CLASP and as Assistant County Manager, I would like to pass on the good wishes and support of Clare County Council this evening”, he said.

Chairman of CLASP, Noel Crowley thanked Ennis UDC for honouring CLASP with a civic reception and acknowledged the tremendous assistance given to the project by many people and organisations and from FÁS in particular. Mr. Crowley commented on the hard work done by the trainees and supervisors. He mentioned that a history of all areas in the county was now available because of their efforts. Any student in Clare now had the history of their locality available for reference or project purposes.

On Monday the 22nd December, CLASP launched “The Strangers Gaze, Travels in County Clare 1834 - 1950” which was edited by Brian Ó Dálaigh. This will be the 8th major publication from CLASP and with its rich illustrations, evokes the atmosphere and character of the county’s past.

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