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Councillor Liam Grant with fellow Doolin Swimmers Group members; Trish White, Louise Roseingrave and Darra Hughes. Photograph by John Kelly

Public pushback against Doolin port proposal

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A large crowd is expected in Doolin this Sunday for a call-to-action of local people against the designation of the old Doolin Pier as a port.
Hundreds of swimmers and other water users are expected to congregate at Doolin Pier at 6.30pm this Sunday, September 3, in a show of community strength against plans which could see people prevented from using the old pier for personal use.
Local people have traditionally used the old pier in Doolin as a location for swimming and water sports. Indeed, Clare County Council stationed a lifeguard at the pier as recently as 2014.
Earlier this year, signs were erected at the old pier which indicated that swimming was prohibited from that location.
A new pier was recently completed in Doolin and many locals feel that the new pier should be designated for the use of ferries and boats, while the old pier should be reserved for the use of the public.
“We are having a call to action day on Sunday on the Old Pier in Doolin and we have asked community members who use the pier, either for swimming, kayaking, stand-up paddle-boarding, fishing and people who walk and hike from the area, to come out and support us,” said Leigh O’Connell of the Doolin Swimmers Club.
“What we want is for the pier to be predesignated as a bathing and leisure pier. Unfortunately, there seems to be a push to turn it into a port. It is very difficult for us to get any information about this and what that means. This proposal suggest that the pier will be blocked-off and the public won’t be able to get access to this at all.
“Currently this area is not designated as a bathing and leisure area. This has been the case since 2014. Historically, for decades, we had a lifeguard there and we want to show the council [Clare County Council] all of the people who use the pier on a regular basis. This is a community who are supporting our right to have access to this pier.
“If the conditions are good, we will have large groups of swimmers and kayakers out in the water, and anyone who doesn’t swim will be showing their support from the pier itself.”

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