A Garda investigation is underway after posters and letters warning holiday home owners in Kilkee to stay away were discovered this week.
The warnings were displayed near holiday home sites in the West Clare resort after rising tensions over holiday makers descended on the town for the Easter break, breaking government guidelines to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
The letters discovered were headed ‘Kilkee Residents Health Defence’, and stated:
“Holiday home owners. Stay at home does not mean your holiday pad. We would like you to return to your home. Do the right thing, F**k out of Kilkee NOW! If you do not leave, when the crisis is over, you may not have a holiday home to return to this summer.”
Local councillor Cillian Murphy is among those who has condemned the move and insisted that it was not representative of the views of the majority of people in the area. Councillor Murphy also urged those who own holiday homes in places like Kilkee and Lahinch to respect the safety of the local community and to stay away while the Covid-19 guidelines are in place.
It comes just a few weeks after locals in the area erected signs urging those who were travelling to the area to stay away, while in North Clare, local hotelier Michael Vaughan echoed similar sentiments for those who were travelling to their holiday homes in Lahinch. He stated in an online post that they would be welcome when things have gone back to normal, but for now urged them to stay away.
CEO of Clare County Council Pat Dowling said: “Clare County Council is advising members of the public not to travel to holiday homes, caravan parks or tourist resorts during the current Covid-19 travel restrictions. A major An Garda Síochána operation is in force, supported by the Council. In the future, we look forward to welcoming visitors to Clare again but, for now, please comply with the travel restrictions and keep Ireland safe”.