first_imgTHE presence of an armed garda unit in Co Donegal over the last few days is ‘not unusual’ senior officers say.The Regional Response Unit has been on patrol in the east, north and south of the county over the past week.Patrols have taken place in Inishowen, Lifford, Raphoe, Ballyshannon and Donegal Town. The Northern Region unit patrols are used regularly in the Border counties. GARDA ARMED UNITS ‘NOT UNUSUAL’ SAY OFFICERS was last modified: October 21st, 2015 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Armed Response UnitGardaREGIONAL RESPONSE UNITlast_img read more

The meaning of heritage

first_imgThe Constitutional Court is one of South Africa’s new heritage buildings.(Image: Lucille Davie)MEDIA CONTACTS • Sonwabile MancotywaChief Executive Officer, National Heritage Council+27 12 348 1663.RELATED ARTICLES• Ubuntu is about relationships• South Africa’s heritage is world class• Parenting a Nation Lucille DavieHeritage is a hugely complex and nebulous concept, with its meaning and relevance varying from person to person.The National Heritage Council of South Africa (NHC) is embarking on a project to involve the public in defining the concept. It offers the following as a starting point: “Heritage is what is preserved from the past as the living collective memory of a people not only to inform the present about the past but also to equip successive generations to fashion their future. It is what creates a sense of identity and assures rootedness and continuity, so that what is brought out by dynamism of culture is not changed for its own sake, but it is a result of people’s conscious choice to create a better life.”The NHC is a statutory body falling under the Department of Arts and Culture. It is responsible for the preservation of the country’s heritage. Established in 2004, its vision is to “build a nation proud of its African heritage”. To this end it sets out to “transform, protect and promote South African heritage for sustainable development”.“We are committed to make knowledge about our heritage available to the public,” says NHC chief executive Sonwabile Mancotywa. “The country can build the pride of its people by at least appreciating our successes. The history that defines these successes of our nation is important to our heritage. These moments in history, the features of our nature and culture as well as the objects that signify gratifying and irreversible turning points in our lifetime, are permanent traits of our pride.”It aims to create public awareness of and promote education about heritage, and make funding available for projects that make heritage a socio-economic resource.Professor Kathy Munro, honorary associate professor in the school of architecture and planning at Wits University, defines heritage as legacies from the past. She says heritage could be physical objects such as buildings or artefacts, or cultural such as language or customs, or books, or songs, or shared traditions. “There are many different forms of heritage, depending on the discipline, for example, science, culinary, literary, architectural, musical, etc.” She emphasises that heritage is not the same as history. “Heritage is broader and sometimes less analytical in approach and recognition than history. History is about interpretation and the survival of documentation or written evidence; heritage is about identity.”Professor Muxe Nkondo of the NHC says we should look to the Constitution to define heritage. The six freedoms in the Constitution should be the basis of our heritage: freedom and security of the person; freedom of religion, belief and opinion; freedom of expression; freedom of association; freedom of movement and residence; freedom of trade, occupation and profession. “We should celebrate those who fought for our freedom – those values and principles are our heritage. We should remember things in our past that embody the best things of our past.” He stresses that all South Africans should decide what is best about our past, not just parliamentarians.Unique and preciousIn its preamble, the National Heritage Resources Act of 1999 states that our heritage is unique and precious and cannot be renewed. “It helps us to define our cultural identity and therefore lies at the heart of our spiritual well-being and has the power to build our nation. It has the potential to affirm our diverse cultures, and in so doing shape our national character.”It has a healing quality too, states the Act. It celebrates our achievements and contributes to redressing past inequities. It also educates by deepening our understanding of society and encourages us to empathise with the experiences of others. “It facilitates healing and material and symbolic restitution and it promotes new and previously neglected research into our rich oral traditions and customs.”And, says Munro, our heritage is constantly being created. She cites as an example our new flag. “It is an enormously successful point of new identity for post-1994 South Africans. Heritage is created through growing awareness of the presence and survival of past legacies, artefacts, objects.”National estateThe Act indicates that our heritage is part of the national estate – the listing of all our heritage resources – which may include a range of objects:• Places, buildings, structures and equipment of cultural significance;• Places to which oral traditions are attached or which are associated with living heritage;• Historical settlements and townscapes;• Landscapes and natural features of cultural significance;• Geological sites of scientific or cultural importance;• Archaeological and palaeontological sites;• Graves and burial grounds;• Sites of significance relating to the history of slavery in South Africa; and,• Movable objects like ethnographic art, military objects, decorative or fine art objects, books, records, documents, photographic positives and negatives, film or video material, or sound recordings.The national estate may include a place or object that has cultural significance or other special value because of its importance in the community; its possession of uncommon, rare or endangered aspects of South Africa’s natural or cultural heritage; its potential to yield information that will contribute to an understanding of South Africa’s natural or cultural heritage; its strong or special association with a particular community or cultural group for social, cultural or spiritual reasons; its strong association with the life or work of a person, group or organisation of importance in the history of South Africa; and sites of significance relating to the history of slavery in South Africa.Heritage resourcesA heritage resource is any place or object of cultural significance, according to the Act. “Heritage resources have lasting value in their own right and provide evidence of the origins of South African society and as they are valuable, finite, non-renewable and irreplaceable they must be carefully managed to ensure their survival,” it indicates.It goes further to state that heritage resources “contribute to research, education and tourism and they must be developed and presented for these purposes in a way that ensures dignity and respect for cultural values”.Furthermore, the identification and management of heritage resources must take account of cultural values and indigenous knowledge systems, involving the least possible alteration or loss of them. The use and enjoyment of and access to heritage resources, consistent with their significance and conservation needs, must be promoted. These resources must be fully researched, documented and recorded for use by present and future generations.Heritage criteriaThe Act gives criteria that can be used to judge the heritage significance of an object: social and cultural significance; historical; archaeological; architectural; aesthetic; scientific and technological; group and relationship; and landmark significance. To judge the significance of our heritage, the Act specifies a three-tiered management system. The South African Heritage Resources Agency has overall responsibility for heritage resources of national significance. Each province has a provincial heritage resources authority, to manage resources within the province. And, on a local level, municipalities are responsible for managing and protecting heritage resources worthy of conservation.The provincial authorities are obliged to develop registers of heritage sites and investigate their cultural significance, and will look to local authorities for relevant heritage information.Regarding buildings, general protection is given to all buildings built before 1942, in other words, buildings older than 60 years. A permit is required for alteration or demolition of buildings older than 60 years. This does not mean that all buildings over 60 years are worthy of preservation – they have to have cultural, historical or architectural significance. Examples of these are Mandela House in Soweto, Robben Island Prison, Houses of Parliament in Cape Town, Union Buildings in Pretoria, the Fort in Cape Town, or Liliesleaf Farm buildings in Johannesburg.Alternatively, buildings younger than 60 years may have great historical importance, and should therefore be preserved. Examples include the Constitutional Court in Johannesburg, Apartheid Museum and Hector Pieterson Museum, both in Johannesburg, and Freedom Park outside Pretoria.Importance of heritageThe importance of heritage cannot be underestimated. It affects land use applications and building plan approvals, and therefore needs to be co-ordinated with development planning, building control, law enforcement and other functions.In addition, there are economic benefits to pursuing a proactive preservation policy. Building rehabilitation outperforms manufacturing and new construction when it comes to job creation, as well as creating a capital asset in the form of the rehabilitated building. Secondly, heritage tourism is the fastest growing segment of the tourism industry. Heritage tourists should be encouraged as they visit more places, stay longer and spend more money than other tourists.There are still other benefits – historic properties can play a role in providing housing which is affordable, safe and attractive. In addition, small businesses often find the quality accommodation at reasonable prices offered by rehabilitated buildings ideal.“Heritage is positioned as an agent of social change, reconstruction and development,” says Eric Itzkin, the deputy director of immovable heritage in Johannesburg. Certainly the preservation of buildings in downtown Joburg is a key element in the revitalisation of the city, as well as in providing necessary jobs.In the City of Johannesburg’s 2004 policy document, Itzkin wrote: “Heritage is widely acknowledged to have an important potential as a catalyst for development. Johannesburg’s heritage resources should therefore be marshalled in support of the City’s long-term development goals and 2030 Strategy. The challenge is not only to preserve historic resources, but also to use them as positive instruments for growth and change.”World Heritage sitesSouth Africa has been recognised by Unesco, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, which has declared eight World Heritage Sites in the country, reflecting its rich natural resources and incredible beauty. Four of South Africa’s World Heritage Sites are classified as cultural, three as natural and one as a mixed cultural and natural site.The three natural heritage sites are the iSimangaliso (formerly the Greater St Lucia) Wetland Park in KwaZulu-Natal; the Cape Floral Region in Western Cape; and the Vredefort Dome in Free State. The four cultural sites are the Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape in Limpopo; Robben Island off Cape Town; the Cradle of Humankind in Gauteng and North West; and the Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape in Northern Cape. The uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park in KwaZulu-Natal is the mixed cultural and natural site, with both the highest mountain range in Africa south of Kilimanjaro and the continent’s finest concentration of Bushmen rock art.The NHC is on a drive to get people involved in defining their heritage, and reflecting on what needs to be remembered and what forgotten, and who should speak for the past. Perhaps the University of Massachusetts in the US sums it up best: “Heritage is an essential part of the present we live in – and of the future we will build.”last_img read more

Soggy 2018 sets records

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Matt ReeseLooking back on the previous year, I think I spent more time in 2018 outside in the precipitation than any year I can remember, probably more than the last 5 years combined. Remember those wild April snows? I do. Then, of course, there were steady rains with occasional deluges throughout the growing season and the soggiest autumn harvest in recent memory that kept combines out of the fields and the crops in them for much longer than usual. In 2018, there was not really a spring or a fall. It just went from long, cold, snowy winter to wet, muggy summer to soggy, muddy winter.Vowing to avoid more time spent in the rain, I waited until fairly late in the day on Dec. 31 to go for one last 2018 4-mile run. The rain had finally stopped around 3:30 or so and it looked like the skies cleared a bit by around 4 p.m. I laced up my running shoes and took to the roads. About a quarter mile in, it started to sprinkle. After about a mile the heavy rain began, but I kept on for the intended distance. Soaked: 2018, you rascal, you got me again.Anyone involved with agriculture was acutely aware of the plentiful precipitation in 2018, with some places seeing records broken. At the John Glenn International Airport in Columbus, last year saw a total of 55.18 inches of precipitation, breaking the 2011 record of 54.96. The average rainfall in Columbus is 39.31 inches, according to the National Weather Service. Of the 10 wettest years in Columbus, four have occurred since 2000 — 2018 (first), 2011 (second), 2004 (fourth), and 2003 (eighth). Four other top 10 wet years in Columbus took place between 1882 and 1890.It wasn’t just central Ohio was that was soggy. Most of the state had precipitation levels that were well above normal. Cincinnati had its third highest rainfall total at 55.9 inches and Dayton had its tenth wettest year with 49.99 inches of precipitation in 2018, according to the National Weather Service. Cleveland was also well above average precipitation last year.A combination of factors led to the wet conditions in Ohio and much of the eastern U.S., said AccuWeather Meteorologist Kyle Elliott.“An abnormally strong Bermuda high pressure system prevented cold fronts from diving southward out of Canada and into the eastern United States as is typically the case every couple of weeks from July through September,” Elliott said. “As a result, storm systems basically came to a standstill for days on end in the eastern half of the nation.“In addition, three tropical systems (Florence, Gordon and Michael) impacted a large portion of the East. Gordon and Florence slowed down significantly once they made landfall, which allowed these systems to dump extreme amounts of rain over several days.”Aaron Wilson, climate specialist with Ohio State University Extension and the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center, pointed out the early September the remnants of Hurricane Gordon moved across Ohio triggering upward of 8 inches of rain in southern Ohio. While October rainfall was closer to average for the state (with drier conditions early and wet conditions later in the month) November was not good for getting much harvesting done. During the last week of November, about a half millionPhoto by Lea Kimley.acres of soybeans still had to be harvested across the state.“Ohio is not an anomaly,” Wilson said. “It fits the trend toward increased precipitation that we’ve seen across the Midwest and the Northeast.”Temperatures are getting warmer, and there is a higher amount of water vapor is in the atmosphere, which leads to increased precipitation, Wilson said.“We’re seeing more intense rainfall events and more overall annual precipitation,” he said.This, of course, has implications for Ohio agriculture. Many individual farms had yields better than or near their best ever. Heading into the final January report, the average yields of both soybeans and corn are projected to surpass the state’s previous record highs. Soybeans, which are estimated to average 60 bushels per acre, are expected to top last year’s average by 19%, and the 190 bushel-per-acre average for Ohio corn is up 11% from 2017’s average, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.The major exception to the sogginess of 2018 was a well-timed dry spell for much of Ohio in late April and early May, allowing for ideal planting conditions and uniform crop emergence to get the season off to a great start in many areas. After that, the moisture and warm temperatures during the growing season kept crops growing well, but also pushed diseases to yield-limiting levels in fields around the state, particularly in southern Ohio. This impacted 2018 but also could cause problems in 2019 with seed quality. Laura Lindsey, Ohio State University Extension soybean specialist, advised growers to pay attention to the germination rate of their seed this spring when planting and adjust population rates accordingly.Anyone trying to make hay in 2018 will certainly not soon forget the challenges with the rain. For those with livestock, all I can say is, “I’m sorry.” The mud is plentiful and it can make managing animals on pasture or in feedlots a real challenge. OSU Extension Specialist Steve Boyles published research that found dewclaw deep mud or manure in a feedlot situation can reduce animal performance by 7% in beef cattle. When mud and manure get hock deep, the reduction is 28%, according to Stan Smith, with OSU Extension in Fairfield County.I, for one, had my fill of spending time outside in the rain in 2018 and I know many in agriculture feel similarly. Yet, at the same time, it is really hard to complain about the rain that made for a really great growing season and a successful year for crop production.So, thanks for the rains 2018. Now, I guess, it’s time to put on some dry socks and press on.last_img read more

Via des Echelles de la Mort (GC32NMB):—Geocache of the Week

first_imgThe T5 thrill seekers come to this area to feel alive and experience the adrenaline. The first stage of obstacles include ladders, originally made of wood and used by smugglers in the 18th century to pass over the Swiss border. Today, in place are safer ladders that are reinforced, and hooks in the side of the rock face to help you traverse en cours to the geocache.Just when you thought you were on solid ground, the wobbly monkey bridge and shaky nerves approach. Harness your inner grit to pass the daunting bridge and grab the cache that lies just ahead. The real challenge is simply getting to ground zero and overcoming that ‘stomach in your throat’ feeling along the route.“After a good vertical climb and adrenaline to the max . . .  I agree our first T5 was a hand trembling experience, and a lot of effort,” say CEPITIFLI, creators of the video linked above.Can you imagine crossing this in the winter time? There are a few brave souls who went after this T5 in the snow!From here you can choose between hiking back, head over another bridge, or going a bit further and taking a zip line across the valley. Don’t forget to BYOP (bring your own pulley), or rent a pulley nearby to add to the adventure. The area is regularly maintained by the land offices of la via ferrata des échelles de la mort. Thank you for all the great pictures for those who have visited, and thank you Sansecousse et Gountard for recognizing this brilliant area and maintaining the geocache.  Location:Franche-Comté, FranceN 47° 11.165′ E 006° 52.276 TraditionalGC32NMBby Sansecousse What is Geocaching without adventure, risk-taking, thrill, and a challenge to overcome? GC32NMB encompasses every one of those elements, and has its own movie trailer. Be prepared to cross narrow monkey bridges that sway over 100 meters of open air, scale rugged rock faces, and climb what the locals refer to as des Echelles de la Mort: the ladders of death. After signing the log-book, zip line your way through the Doub Gorges in the Franch-Comté region of France to cap off this epic journey.The howling winds that sweep through the gorges have led the locals to refer to the area as “Death Valley.” Contrary to the name, the region is robust with flowers, colorful meadows, sparkling lakes, and the foothills of the Jura Mountains. The beauty of the Franch-Comté draws a lot of attention and becomes an oasis in the summer time, when other parts of France become dry. Share with your Friends:More SharePrint RelatedT5 Klettersteig caching in AustriaSeptember 21, 2017In “Community”The Aare Gorge | Aareschlucht | Gorges de l’Aar – GC1YH51 – GEOCACHE OF THE WEEK – October 11, 2012October 11, 2012In “Community”Les objectifs géocaching de Rock Chalk pour 2019January 15, 2019In “Français” Difficulty:2Terrain:5last_img read more

Virat Kohli shames trolls for targeting ex-girlfriend Anushka Sharma on Twitter

first_imgHours after powering India into the semi-finals of the ICC World Twenty20 with a swashbuckling 82 not out against Australia, Virat Kohli lashed out at Twitter trolls for targeting ex-girlfriend Anushka Sharma.Shame on people for trolling @AnushkaSharma non-stop. Have some compassion. She has always only given me positivity; Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) March 28, 2016Twitterati picked up on Anushka, a leading movie-star in India, after Kohli continued his golden run in 2016. The couple had parted ways earlier this year after dating for more than two years. (Virat Kohli best batsman in the world, says Sunil Gavaskar ) The trolls suggested that Kohli was better off without Anushka. The 27-year-old was in middling form throughout 2015 when he and the Bollywood heartthrob were still going strong. Because they broke up in 2016, Kohli seemed to have rediscovered his golden touch, the trolls said.However, Kohli is not the one to take such unsporting behaviour lying down. He took to social media and posted a chivalrous message on behalf of Anushka, who reports claimed, was a controlling girlfriend. (Virat Kohli rates knock of 82* against Australia at the top )Kohli has been key to India’s revival in the ongoing World T20 with scores of 23, 55 not out, 25 and 82 not out. The Indian Test skipper had also led his side to the number one position in the ICC’s Test rankings last year, with a historic series win over South Africa.last_img read more

FINAL THOUGHTS: Women’s open

first_imgPrior to the start of the State of Origin series, the two captains of the women’s open teams Louise Winchester (New South Wales) and Peta Rogerson (Queensland) shared their final thoughts.Lousie Winchester on…The women’s open division:“We know it is going to be a tough one that is for sure, New South Wales and Queensland are always the toughest games I’ve been a part of. You’ve got the best versus the best, you have got such quality players out there mixed with experience and youth. It’s always the quickest touch I have ever played and you know, Australia are world champions in touch and it’s the best of New South Wales against the best of Queensland. It is an absolute physical battle as well as a mental battle.The series 2-1 loss in 2012:“That [loss] really hurt us. Queensland deserved it, they outplayed us but we have had two years to think about what we need to do and to get the series win, especially in Queensland it will be something we are looking forward to and being a part of.”Peta Rogerson on…The Queensland team:“We’ve had a great couple of weeks with our preparation. Everything has run really smoothly and there isn’t an overly nervous feeling in the camp at the moment but I’m sure as it draws closer, it will build. I just hope all of our girls have a great series, especially the girls on debut, I just want them to have the opportunity to play really well.Playing in Queensland:“You’ve got your family and your friends who sometimes don’t get the chance to watch you play when you are travelling further away. It is always that extra special to play in front of them and that’s what makes it a bit more proud and important.Wearing the maroon colours:“Growing up as a girl playing touch, it was my dreams to make a Queensland team and every time I put on a Queensland jersey it makes me feel very, very special and very proud, and to captain these group of girls, it will be a great moment this weekend.”There are plenty of ways to keep up-to-date with all of the latest results, news and information from the 2014 State of Origin. The Touch Football Australia and State of Origin websites will be updated regularly throughout the event with all of the latest information and can be found by clicking on the links below: All of Touch Football Australia’s social media pages will be regularly updated throughout the NYC event, so be sure to ‘like’ and ‘follow’ us by clicking on the links below. Facebook – Twitter – (be sure to use the hashtag #soo2014) Instagram – (be sure to use the hashtag #soo2014) The TFA YouTube channel will also have highlights and live games streamed throughout the event. Please click on the link below to be taken to the channel, and be sure to become a subscriber to the channel – note, the link for the Open’s games by television production company, Power Productions – LinksCaptain’s tales: Womenlast_img read more

10 months agoReal Madrid captain Ramos: We don’t miss Ronaldo

first_imgReal Madrid captain Ramos: We don’t miss Ronaldoby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveReal Madrid captain Sergio Ramos insists they do not miss former teammate Cristiano Ronaldo.Ronaldo left Real in August for Juventus.Preparing for their Club World Cup defence, Ramos insists they don’t miss the Portuguese.”I think that on the field there will not be much difference, despite the absence of Cristiano Ronaldo, who was a decisive player for us, but we are going to compete with the same philosophy as always in the club: to win,” explained Ramos.”We have good memories of this competition, because we have been successful on previous occasions, it is a short competition and there is no margin for error, there is a semifinal and then a final, and we want to take the cup back home.” About the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

10 months agoChelsea boss Sarri hints he’d like to work with Pulisic immediately

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Chelsea boss Sarri hints he’d like to work with Pulisic immediatelyby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea boss Maurizio Sarri has hinted he’d like to work with new signing Christian Pulisic immediately.The club paid £58million to sign the American sensation, 20, from Borussia Dortmund. But he will not arrive at Stamford Bridge until the end of the season as he has been loaned back to Dortmund for the rest of the current campaign.However with injury concerns for Willian and Pedro, Sarri was asked if the club should have brought him in immediately: “I don’t know.“As I said before I am not in charge of the market, it is difficult for me to talk about the market or the deal of Pulisic.“Willian’s injury I think is not very serious. The doctor said it was not serious for Pedro as well.“Pedro in one week can train. Of course this match was difficult as Pedro, (Callum Hudson-) Odoi, (Olivier) Giroud were out.” last_img read more

Torontos crippling cold a threat to homeless

first_imgAPTN National NewsThe crippling cold snap is impacting Toronto.The city is dealing with major flight delays, street car shutdowns and other mishaps.Some might say the city’s weather only feels like minus 21, but with the recent death of at least one homeless person.APTN’s Delaney Windigo explains why this cold can be deadly.last_img