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Hedge-cutting scheme launched in Clare

CLARE County Council is seeking to complement its hedge-cutting programme this autumn by facilitating landowners and community groups in maintaining hedgerows throughout County Clare.

The Community Hedge Cutting Grant Scheme, which was the first of its kind to be developed in Ireland when it was piloted in 2013, will see €10,000 being provided to deal with the local road network over the coming autumn and winter seasons.

Applications are being invited from communities and groups before September 30, 2020. Each application will be assessed and a grant of €50 per kilometre of hedgerow will be paid, subject to certain conditions and available resources.

The scheme will provide some financial assistance to communities and groups that undertake hedge-cutting and the cutting of overhanging trees, and will assist landowners in complying with their responsibilities under Section 70 of the Roads Act, 1993.

John Corry, Administrative Officer, Transportation, Clare County Council, said: “We are confident that this scheme, complemented by the Council’s ongoing hedge-cutting programme, will be of benefit in dealing effectively with this issue. Our objective is that by the start of the nesting season in March 2021, much of the worst-affected local roads in the county will be significantly enhanced in their capacity to accommodate the traffic that uses them.”

Mr Corry continued: “The Roads Act, 1993, stipulates that all growth emanating from any part of the roadside boundary structure or from within the land protected by same is the responsibility of the landowner. From a road safety point of view, it is important that this responsibility is acknowledged and embraced by roadside landowners, and the Community Hedge Cutting Grant Scheme is intended to provide support in this context to offset some of the costs associated with hedge-cutting.”

About Fiona McGarry

Fiona McGarry joined The Clare Champion as a reporter after a four-year stint as producer of Morning Focus on Clare FM. Prior to that she worked for various radio, print and online titles, including Newstalk, Maximum Media and The Tuam Herald. Fiona’s media career began in her native Mayo when she joined Midwest Radio. She is the maker of a number of radio documentaries, funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI). She has also availed of the Simon Cumbers Media Fund to report on development issues supported by Irish Aid in Haiti. She won a Justice Media Award for a short radio series on the work of Bedford Row Project, which supports prisoners and families in the Mid-West. Fiona also teaches on the Journalism programmes at NUI Galway. If you have a story and would like to get in touch with Fiona you can email her at fmcgarry@clarechampion.ie or telephone 065 6864146.

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