The News Letter (Belfast, Northern Ireland)

A Unionist newspaper published daily in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Articles cover current events, politics, and sports from around Northern Ireland and the UK.

Articles from May 6, 2000

2000 Guineas Preview : Take Up Giant's Cause
SIDE with the Irish again today. Last month Papillon notched a second successive triumph for the Irish in the Martell Grand National and now the Sagitta 2000 Guineas also looks marked ''for export'' for the second time in three years. Giant's...
[3] Equestrian World: Equestrian Focus
BANBRIDGE driving trials international, Sarah Clinghan is off to Royal Windsor to compete with Highmoor Firecracker. Lesley Mulholland from Donacloney is groom. Sarah will also compete at Tatton Park trials and is preparing for the world championships...
Adding Value to Your Silage
SILAGE CONSERVATION is arguably the most important activity conducted on a dairy farm during the year. The productivity of the dairy herd throughout the winter period is largely driven by the quality and volume of grass silage that is considered...
Anne-Marie's Lonely Death Stuns Ulster
THE grim find of a woman's body in her home, six months after her death, has led to calls for a review of legislation to permit easier access for housing authorities into people's homes. The discovery of 54-year-old Anne-Marie Coughlin on the settee...
A Personal Perspective on Troubles
A POIGNANT and moving book highlighting the personal effects of the Troubles is to be launched on Monday night at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast. Although books about Ulster's conflict appear to be two-a-penny at the moment, those involved in Personal...
Around the World with Bob and Christine Harper: Strange Fashion of the Seafarers
THE LAST time our youngest son Jamie joined Breakaway we were in Vavau, the northern group of islands in the Kingdom of Tonga. The locals wear what is known as a mat. Woven out of palm fronds, it is wrapped around their middle as a sign of respect...
Athletics: Youngsters Aim to Shine as New Season Begins
LAGAN Valley, St Columbs and Sparta should be top club in the first round of the McDonalds Young Athletes League at Templemore Complex, Londonderry today. The event includes six age groups with intermediate, junior and minor girls along with youths,...
British Pig and Poultry Fair: 'BRAIN DRAIN' ON THE HORIZON
A NEW 'brain drain' of the best of British pig expertise is on the horizon following the news of a 'head-hunting' trip to the British Pig & Poultry Fair by an American hog industry expert. "We could lose some of our best technicians," says Hugh...
Campbell Outlines Angus Meat Plan
DAVID Campbell, chairman of the directors, conducted the business at the second annual general meeting of Aberdeen-Angus Quality Beef Ltd, held in Dungannon this week. He said that the co-operative had continued to grow during 1999. There had been...
Celebrating Easter the Meramec Way; Follow Geoff Hill's Adventures as He Travels Route 66 on a Harley
It was Easter Saturday, and to celebrate everyone in Missouri had decided to get into their cars and drive everywhere at once. Except at Meramec Caverns, where they had decided to re-enact the crucifixion. You see, in the good old days of Route...
Celebration Time - at the Double
A DOUBLE celebration at McConnel as a second piece of machinery is introduced to celebrate the company's 65th anniversary. The latest edition to the McConnel product range is the 2.5m (8ft) offset rotary mower, named the Topper 8 (pictured), which...
Choosing a Magnesium Supplement
GRASS tetany is still one of the major killers of livestock during the grazing season and gone are the days when it only presented a problem during the first six weeks at grass for dairy cows and six weeks in late autumn for suckler cows, writes IAN...
Church Groups Call for National Day of Prayer
A national Day of Prayer to raise awareness of the personal impact of the farming crisis has been called for Rogation Sunday (May 28), by church groups with support from the National Farmers' Union. Rogation Sunday is considered particularly appropriate...
Cricket: Pressure Is on the Favourites
THE attraction in cup fixtures in any sport is the chance of an upset and of today's eight Deloitte and Touche first round games, half are between teams from different sections, and with three of the underdogs at home, the pressure is on the favourites,...
David Bows out in Style
WARM SPRING sunshine drew a huge crowd to Dovenby Craggs, near Cockermounth, Cumbria, for the sale of the entire milking portion and heifer calves from David Robinson's Kellywell Herd of Holsteins on Tuesday. David is retiring from dairy farming...
Deloitte & Touche Cup Cricket: Cup Offers New Hope
AFTER Tuesday's Natwest Trophy debacle in Dublin, another day of cup cricket in Ireland would appear as welcome as a belated April shower. However, the weather is settled and the new look Deloitte and Touche Cup offers players and spectators plenty...
DERRY & RAPHOE ACTION: Rural Groups Planning the Way Ahead
DERRY & RAPHOE ACTION, an organisation working with marginalised rural groups in Counties Tyrone, Londonderry and Donegal, organised a workshop on farming and community development in Floyds, Ballymagorry, near Strabane. Derek Reaney, development...
Dramatic Decision after 30 Tense Hours; PMs Announce Target Dates to Revive Accord
PRIME Ministers Tony Blair and Bertie Ahern last night emerged from 30 hours of Hillsborough talks to announce that the Stormont institutions will be restored on May 22, provided there is a satisfactory response to new proposals. The sudden break in...
Equestrian World
Ecclesville Lagr entries over the two days left the jumping for prize money very hotly contested. The 1.0M class for horses saw 12 competitors juimping it off against teh clock,, with one member of the Ecclesville team, Shane Mcgloin, winning with...
Equestrian World: Around the Events
Lime Park The brilliant sunshine and bank holiday contributed to the fantastic turnout at Lime Park's May Day Show. The talents of all the competitors was very high. Close rounds ran from early morning till late afternoon continuously, Showjumping...
Equestrian World: Ballynahinch Show Boost to Hospice
THIS year's IPS Ballynahinch charity show is scheduled to run on the 15 July. With the affiliation to the Irish pony society and qualifier for the British Show Pony Society championships in Petersborough in September it is sure to be a success. ...
Equestrian World: Equestrian Focus
WATERFORD Crystal and Independent Newspapers have announced their joint sponsorship of young Irish showjumping Cian O'Connor and his new horse, appropriately named Waterford Crystal. Cian, at just 20 years of age is the youngest ever Irishman to...
Equestrian World: Equestrian Focus
WILL Crean from Saintfield has been added to the Northern Region regional trainers panel of the Showjumping Association of Ireland. NORTHERN Ireland's judges and course builders panel includes a host of new names to the sport. On the deputy panel...
Equestrian World: Fermanagh Harriers Launch New Track
A SUMPTIOUS banquet and a champagne reception helped launch the fantastic new point to point track at Necarne which will be the traditional venue for the Fermanagh Harriers annual races. Last Friday Fermanagh Harriers welcomed guests to their launch...
Equestrian World: Riding for Disabled Gets Boost
THE Riding For Disabled Fort Centre at Maghera, is to benefit from an Open Garden to be held on Sunday 14th May at Moyola Park in Castledawson. The object of the Riding for the Disabled Association is to give the opportunity of riding to any disabled...
Equestrian World: Top Riders Compete at Ecclesville Show
This May the top European Riders compete for major awards at the Ecclesville International show being staged on the 13 and 14 May. Competitors are attending the show from as far away as Chile and France with the majority of competitors travelling...
Equestrian World: Ulster Breeder Celebrates Beau Victory
THE tale of Beau, bred in Donacloney by Margaret Turner, winning last Saturday's Whitbread Gold Cup has taken headlines in all the national papers. Beau by Scarvagh House's Zaffaran, who also sired Looks Like Trouble winner of the Cheltenham Gold...
Exports Decline 5pc; . . . but Show Improvement
THE United Kingdom's food and drink export market has shown a decline in sales for the second consecutive year. According to figures released this week by Food from Britain - the international food and drink marketing consultancy - the value of...
Farmhouse Corner: Alison Is Primed for Another Hectic Three Days
ALISON Baird reckons she has been demonstrating on the Dairy Council stand at the Balmoral Show for five years, but she has also been demonstrating for the Council up and down the country for at least 12. Trained at Bangor Technical College where...
Farmhouse Corner: Balmoral - a Show Not to Be Missed
ONCE again the farming community will be gathering at Balmoral to celebrate - if that is the right word - the agricultural industry in all its forms. It's a time for old friends to meet again, to share their news, swop experiences and ponder the...
Farmhouse Corner: Recipes on Offer at the Show
THE Dairy Council's stand is always worth a visit, and Bernice McMullan along with her home economists Alison Baird and Wenda Bristow will be demonstrating a range of 35 recipes. Here are just some from the new leaflet. BEEF MACARONI You will...
Farm Reform Cash for Would-Be Euro States
THE European Union is planning to spend about pounds 2.3 billion in the next six years to support farming reforms of countries seeking EU membership, the union's top agriculture official has said. Agriculture Commissioner Franz Fischler made his...
Fergie's Dad Thrilled over Prospect of 'Happy' Pair Reuniting
THE Duchess of York's father said yesterday that he would be ''thrilled'' if she and the Duke of York were to remarry. Major Ronald Ferguson said ''nothing would give me greater pleasure'' than to see his daughter and his former son-in-law tie the...
Football: Coyle Has to Sweat on Rory
GLENTORAN manager Roy Coyle will anxiously await a late fitness check on rugged Rory Hamill, the midfield star trying to overcome damage to his right knee sustained in the last league roundup, whea beating Cliftonville. Says Coyle ''There's a wee...
Football: FA Carling Premiership Stats
Arsenal (2) v Chelsea (5) THIERRY Henry is set to return for Arsenal after missing the past two games with a hamstring injury. Martin Keown is a doubtful starter because of a back problem and Fredrik Ljungberg (fractured rib) and Davor Suker (groin)...
Football: Fergie Brings Back Big Guns
SIR Alex Ferguson will bring back his big guns for today's final home match of the season against Tottenham to make sure Manchester United's title celebrations go with a swing. United will finally be presented with the Premier League trophy at the...
Football: Houllier Calls for Final Push
GERARD Houllier has called for a final push to take Liverpool over the finishing line and into the Champions League. The Anfield chief is staying positive as he prepares his side for their final home league game of the season tomorrow against Southampton,...
Football: New Deal for Davy!
LINFIELD manager David Jeffrey did a good stroke of business yesterday when he re-signed two key members of his senior squad. Striker David Larmour, who has scored 77 goals for the Blues in three years, signed a three-year contract, while midfielder...
Football: Ports Hope for Rich Pickings
RICHARD Clarke aims to secure an early 21st birthday bonus from today's glamour game. The midfielder, from Castlederg, has long since come of age in the Portadown team. Once again Clarke, 21 on the 29th of this month, comes under the microscope...
Football: Special Day for Ref John
JOHN FERRYarks his own special milestone. The 44 year old man from New Buildings, is one of a rare breed - honoured with two Irish Cup finals. ''And this one is extra special for many reasons. Not only is it the last of the Bass sponsored finals,...
Football: Tradition Is Spur for Great Scott
SLICK midfield motivator Scott Young anticipates an exciting Irish Cup final debut. It will be the 23 year old's first appearance in the premier knockout decider, and the classy Caledonian can have a major say in proceedings. ''I certainly hope...
Football: Underdog Tag Suits Us: Ron
PORTADOWN boss Ronnie McFall has his players primed for five-star action, knowing it will require a Herculean team effort to retain the Bass Irish Cup. He wants his outfit to not only prove the team is theworthy holders of the trophy, but also be...
Football: Wenger Fears Weah Factor
THE world player of the year trophy which sits proudly in Arsene Wenger's home stands as a testament to the huge debt which striker George Weah (pictured left) owes to the Frenchman. Wenger admits it is Chelsea striker Weah, who gave the 1995 trophy...
GAA: Coleman's Boys on a Double Mission
IF we are to believe all we hear Derry will be in two minds about tomorrow's National Football League final in Croke Park where their opponents will be All-Ireland champions Meath. Reason is that Derry face Cavan the following Sunday in the Ulster...
Gardening: No Easy Answers to Weed Control
It's the four-letter word guaranteed to drive gardeners to distraction - weed. There is no escape from them, just different ways of controlling them. Hand-weeding is easy and effective although it's also hard work. It will keep weeds at bay but...
Glorious Sunshine Greets Ugs Meeting
THE Ulster Grassland Society's summer meeting took place in glorious sunshine on Tuesday when an enthusiastic group of members and friends from across the Province enjoyed two interesting and informative farm visits in South Antrim and North-East Armagh....
Good Friday Agreement: Full Text of Statement by Governments
THE following is a statement issued by the two governments: 1 In recent weeks the two governments have taken stock of progress in implementing the Good Friday Agreement. 2 Much progress has already been made but there has been disagreement over...
Good Friday Agreement: Police Remind Government of 'Generous' Pay-Off Pledge
POLICE Federation representatives met Tony Blair at Hillsborough yesterday and urged him to intervene to secure a better retirement and severance package for officers affected by the Patten reforms. They described the meeting, which was also attended...
Good Friday Agreement: Think about Loss If the Agreement Fails, Blair Warns
TONY Blair has challenged people to think about what would be lost if the peace process - ''with all its imperfections and difficulties'' - were to collapse. As he and his Irish counterpart Bertie Ahern prepared for yesterday's talks with the main...
Government in LEADER+ Call
A CONSULTATION exercise on a new European Community initiative which provides co-funding for small-scale rural development projects has been launched by Countryside Minister Elliot Morley. The aim of the initiative, LEADER+, would be to grant-aid...
Guarded Welcome Given to Public Beef Commitment
THE National Beef Association has given a guarded welcome to the public commitment made by European Commissioner, David Byrne, and the United Kingdom Agriculture Minister, Nick Brown, last week. While the association said the strive to have low...
Harbro Extends Supplies Business
HARBRO Farm Sales Ltd, of Markethill, Turriff, Aberdeenshire, has completed the purchase of the farm supplies business of Scottish Wool Growers, a division of the British Wool Marketing Board, as from May 1, 2000. Harbro already trades in the same...
IN THE DARK!; No Sign of Deal over OTMS Weights
FARMERS are still in the dark over proposed changes to weigh limits under the Over Thirty Months Scheme (OTMS). As part of the aid package arising from the Downing Street summit, there was a proposal regarding OTMS maximum weight limits. But,...
Irish Export Cattle Sales 2pc Lower
UP TO the middle of April, Irish export cattle disposals, at 707,000 head, were two per cent, of 16,000 head, behind corresponding year earlier levels. On a year-to-date basis, meat plant throughput, at 564,000 head, is running nine per cent, or...
It's Show Time Again at RUAS
ULSTER Farmers' Union president, Douglas Rowe, said yesterday that next week's Balmoral Show "will allow local farmers the opportunity to put aside the problems in the industry and celebrate all that's good about Northern Ireland agriculture.'' ...
Livingstone Basks in Victory over Labour
KEN Livingstone was last night basking in his election as London's first mayor - after a day which dealt a series of blows to Prime Minister Tony Blair. Labour lost nearly 600 council seats to the Tories across England and forfeited its deposit...
Magnet Clue to Nelson Murder
DETECTIVES investigating the murder of high-profile solicitor Rosemary Nelson have identified a magnet attached to the lethal car bomb as a type used only by the Harland and Wolff shipyard. And security force sources told the News Letter they believe...
MATCHING UP!; Developments to the Recommended List Structure for Cereals and Oilseeds
DEVELOPMENTS in the structure for managing the Recommended List system for cereals and oilseeds are being implemented by HGCA (the Home-Grown Cereals Authoity) in co-operation with NIAB (the National Institute of Agricultural Botany) and British Society...
Milk Firms Given Go-Ahead to Expand
THE Government has given the go-ahead for Great Britain's three milk marketing and selling firms to process their own milk. The decision, by Trade and Industry Secretary, Stephen Byers, follows an inquiry by the Director General of Fair Trading...
Morning View: Mrs Coughlin's Fate Reflects on All of Us
THE grim sight that met Belfast Improved Housing staff when they entered the home of the late Mrs Anne-Marie Coughlin represents a stark image of contemporary society. Of course, there have always been people who have lived in isolated places, just...
Motorcycling: Joey's in Pole - but Watch out for Jefferies; Dermot James Has All the Latest News from Portstewart
JOEY Dunlop (pictured left) may not be in the flush of youth but this veteran of the track can end a long lean spell today at the Coca-Cola International North-West '200' motorcycle road races. It's 13 years since 48 year old Dunlop last dominated...
Motorcycling: Speedy Robbie in the Mood
ROBERT Dunlop has made himself favourite for today's 125cc race and he reckons that his big brother Joey can also rise to another North-West win. Holder of a record 14 successes over the seaside circuit, Robert hasn't had his name on the scorecard...
Motor Racing: Crash Will Make Me Stronger - Coulthard; Ian Gordon Previews Tomorrow's Spanish Grand Prix
DAVID Coulthard believes he will emerge a stronger person following his amazing escape from the crashed jet which claimed the lives of his two pilots. The 29 year old insisted that he would not allow what happened at Lyon Airport last Tuesday to...
No Additive Equals Less Profit .
BECAUSE silage-making conditions vary in our very variable climate, farmers find it difficult to put a value on additive use. Has it been effective or not? While many farmers feel instinctively their use of additive has been effective, exact knowledge...
North West 200 Preview : Motorcycling: 'Be Early and Drive Safely' Warn Police
THERE are only three ways to get to the circuit. That is early, safely and sober, said RUC sub-divisional commander, Supt Des Cousley, said. ''Getting there early is really important if you want to get to a particular vantage point as roads will...
North West 200 Preview : Motorcycling: Racers Geared Up to Go
The North West 200 is regarded by many as the premier motorcycling road race in the UK. ROSS McKEE talks to clerk-of-the-course Billy Nutt about the enduring appeal of the thrilling spectacle WITH its explosive combination of colour, charisma and...
'Nothing to Hide' Claims Omagh FC; Included on the Invoice Was a Deal for Signs at the Ground
THE SECRETARY of Omagh Town last night defended his club against allegations that it had misused thousands of pounds intended for the Omagh Fund. Pat McGlinchey told the News Letter that the club would be able to account for every penny of the money...
Oscar Takes Top Prize
THE last Charolais show and sale of the season proved to be a memorable one for Lisnaskea-based Malcolm Surphlis, when his Waterview Herd hit the headlines with yet another supreme championship. Waterview Oscar scored well in both the show and sale...
Outdoors: Return of the Swift
It was a pleasure to see an orange tip butterfly and a swift all on the one day. It was on May Day, and other insects were out and about, notably wasps, bees, ants, and imitation bees. The flowers on the apple tree were opening, the forget-me-nots...
Paris Golf: Kiwi Up for Title
NEW Zealander Michael Campbell charged into contention for another golf title yesterday - and then spoke of his admiration for a player trailing seven strokes behind him. Campbell, four times a winner during the winter and returning this week from...
Planting Delays Cause Potato Growers Problem
THE wettest April on record for many parts of the United Kingdom has prevented numbers of maincrop growers from completing their planting programmes for the 2000 season, and is causing considerable stress in those crops that are already in the ground....
Plugged In
THE FUNKY BUNCH-aka our team of four teenage reviewers, Fox, Dino, Zagger and Flump, give their verdicts on all the latest entertainment software releases This week we're checking out new releases on Playstation and Nintendo 64. We've got Ridge...
Rod & Gun: Time to End This Scandal
My suggestion last week that more control needs to be exercised on the award of grants for environmental projects has caused a few ripples in predictable quarters. After talking to people in the country who had read the article, I am convinced that...
Rugby: A Hard Road for Munster
MUNSTER take on Toulouse in Bordeaux this afternoon keenly aware that they're being asked to win the European Cup the hard way. An away draw in the last four against the team with the best overall record in the competition's history represents the...
Rugby: AIL Play-Off: Last Chance for Ports to Avoid Drop
PORTADOWN'S easy defeat over Malone last Saturday will have given their confidence a much needed boost going into the first leg of their play-off against Instonians at Shaws Bridge this afternoon (2.30pm), writes Sarah Weir. The Chambers Park side...
Rugby: The Girls in Green Ready to Go
IRISH women's rugby legend Fiona Steed has backed the ability of her colleagues ahead of today's departure for the European Championships in Spain. Steed, the brilliant back rower who has appeared in all but the very first of the 35 internationals...
Sheep Farmers Warned on Fluke Dangers Britain Angry over EU States Scheme
REPORTS by both The Veterinary Laboratories Agency and the SAC Veterinary Science Division on increased fluke prevalence this year have prompted advice from Pfizer Animal Health, makers of Valbrazen sheep and cattle wormer and flukicide on the best...
Short-Lived Dream Trip Not All Bad; It Really Was Idyllic While It Lasted
AN Ulsterwoman told last night how her dream holiday came to an abrupt end aboard P&O's pounds 200 million superliner Aurora. Enid Hudson from Banbridge, who had joined her sister, Stella, on board the superliner for the 14-day Mediterranean...
Showbiz Gossip
ERIC IDLE, currently embarking on his Eric Idle Exploits Monty Python concert tour, says he has paid the other members of the Python troupe for permission to use such material as Spam and The Lumberjack Song. He said he delayed his plans for his...
Stocks and Finance : Steady Rate Casts Glow on Market
LONDON shares advanced steadily yesterday with technology and oil stocks leading the charge. Thursday's Bank of England decision to leave interest rates on hold left a warm glow over proceedings. After a positive morning the market went into...
Strides Made for Unity
DECISIVE action is being taken by the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers to break down the barriers of the past and bring the many and varied milk-selling groups across the country into a single, national trade association. So strongly does...
Suffolks Doing the Business for John
JOHN HENRY is a large commercial dairy farmer who also runs a large commercial early lambing flock on his farm at Crankey, five miles north of Newry. Mr Henry said that he has been producing early lambs for more than 30 years and has tried other...
Suspended Sentence
A MAGHERA man, said to have had a previous conviction for a similar offence, was sentenced to one month's imprisonment, suspended for 12 months, at Maghera Magistrate's Court for causing unnecessary suffering to sheep. John McKenna (36), Sunnyside...
Target Set to Revive Accord
TONY Blair and Bertie Ahern last night announced that Northern Ireland's power-sharing institutions will be restored on May 22, subject to a positive response from the main political parties and paramilitary groups. The dramatic announcement came...
Tartan Talk: Pipe Major Richard Ties the Knot
Pipe Major Richard Parkes, the Killyleagh man who has, in the past decade, through the medium of his world-famous Field Marshall Montgomery ensemble, recently 'marched up to the line' in a very different context. In fact he substituted his usual...
The Fleet's in - to Recall Great Battle
Peace and reconciliation was very much the theme as World War II veterans gathered in Londonderry yesterday to commemorate the Battle of the Atlantic. Today, as the series of special events continues, a German admiral will be present officially...
Widdecombe Urges Support for Police; MP Praises 'Secret Weapon' against Crime
OUTSPOKEN Tory MP Ann Widdecombe yesterday called on people in Northern Ireland to cooperate more with the police. During an address to business leaders and top crimebusters at a Crimestoppers conference at the City Hall in Belfast, the Shadow Home...
Women's Group Formed in Co Fermanagh
WOMEN in Agriculture is a new programme in Fermanagh instigated by members of Fermanagh District Partnership Board when it decided it would in some way address the crisis facing the farmers in the county. Traditionally farming has been considered...
Women's Hockey: All or Nothing for Victorians
VICTORIANS have one last chance to keep their flagging ambitions of retaining top flight status alive when they face Ballymoney in a crucial Peugeot 206 Senior League game at the Riada Centre this afternoon. With Omagh already consigned to Section...
YFC Briefing : Reid, Scott Claim Top Awards
THIS Year's YFCU Co Down Practical Young Farmer of the year competition winners were announced on Wednesday evening. The awards, sponsored by John Thompson & Sons Ltd, were won by Gary Reid in the over-21 age group; Nigel Scott in the under-21...
YFC Briefing : Skill, Strength and Fun for All on the Menu at Balmoral
IN a packed and somewhat hectic three days of Balmoral Show the strength and skills of the members of the Young Farmers' Clubs of Ulster will once again be on display. On each of the three days, the association will be playing an active part in...
YFC Briefing : Taniokey Set to Fill the Gap
THE youth of the Poyntzpass area in Co Armagh are once again enjoying the benefits offered through membership of a Young Farmers' Club. It has been many years since Taniokey YFC was an active club in the area but hopefully this new club will fill...