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Tag Archives: clare county council

Developers address concerns over Clare village apartments

A LANDMARK crafts company in Tuamgraney has given an assurance to planners that a proposed new small-scale apartment development will be in keeping with the village streetscape, writes Fiona McGarry. McKernan Woollen Mills Limited lodged plans last June for conversion of an existing cottage into three self-contained apartments. In August, planners requested Further Information (FI) from the company, in relation to the potential impact on the character of the East Clare village. In their letter, planners said they had “serious concerns in relation to the overall design of the development and the impact of same on both the Tuamgraney Architectural Conservation Area (ACA) and the general streetscape at this location”. Planners described the design of the rear extension as “inappropriate” and said there was “a lack of symmetry” in the arrangement of the windows in the front of the building. Further questions were asked about the size of one of the apartments, ventilation and possible overlooking of a neighbouring amenity …

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Hundreds of Clare council homes could have pyrite

HUNDREDS of council homes in this county could be affected by pyrite, it has emerged. At a council briefing for members of the Clare Pyrite Action Group (CPAG) and the Oireachtas, a figure of 350 local authority homes was given. The council has since confirmed the accuracy of this estimate, based on tests conducted to-date. Some believe, however, that even that figure may not paint a true picture of the extent of defective concrete blocks in homes in Clare, and that the actual situation could be worse.  The details have been welcomed by the founder of the CPAG as well as residents of one Ennis housing estate who spoke publicly to The Champion last year about the condition of their homes. Eileen Downes of Oakwood Drive described how she and her neighbours felt ignored for years after first highlighting cracks in their houses.  “We’re looking at our homes getting worse for the last three to five years,” she said. “It’s …

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Councillor irate at ‘shocking treatment’ by Irish Water

A MEMBER of Clare County Council has described as “deplorable and shocking” the treatment of public representatives by Irish Water at a recent briefing.  Councillor Pat Hayes was sharply critical of the utility following the online event last Monday (February 14) for members of the authority. He said that while Irish Water had originally committed to an in-person briefing, with members of the media present, the utility appeared to have had a “change of heart”. “We had a commitment for a briefing before one of the monthly meetings, at which media could attend, on issues including waste water treatment, network leakage and the extraction of water from the Shannon,” the Fianna Fáil member outlined. “There was a change of heart somewhere along the line and it became an in-camera meeting. Then, it was decided to hold it on Zoom. Because councillors were travelling to Ennis for the monthly meeting, we ended up dotted around the headquarters, some having to use …

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Council seeks more detail on controversial telecoms mast

MORE details are being sought on a controversial plan for a 21-metre telecoms in an east Clare town, writes Fiona McGarry. While the Council originally indicated that a decision could be made this month, it has now asked developers Eir for Further Information (FI), following significant public opposition in Scariff and a representation from a local TD. Eir proposes to replace a 12-metre wooden pole, at its exchange on The Connacht Road, with a much higher mast with dishes, antennas and other equipment. When submissions closed at the end of January, a total of 11 objections had been made. One of those is a detailed document with 48 signatures on behalf of East Clare Community Residents. That objection raises concerns about public health, the proximity of the site to Scariff National School and the impact on the Architectural Conservation Area (ACA) of Scariff and Tuamgraney. Deputy Michael McNamara made a representation on the file, “requesting the need for Clare County …

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Recruiting firefighters for Clare town proving ‘a challenge’

BUSINESSES in Shannon are being approached by Clare Fire Service in a bid to encourage people to join the service with Clare Chief Fire Officer Adrian Kelly admitting recruitment in the town is “a challenge”. Shannon Fire Brigade has been approved to increase its crew from 12 to 15, however at the moment there are nine at the station. A recruitment video, visits to businesses, a webinar and meetings with Shannon Chamber are just some of the methods the fire service has been using to encourage people to get involved. Chief Fire Officer Kelly presented a review of the objectives of the 2014 Fire and Emergency Operations Plan at a meeting of the Physical Directorate Strategic Policy Committee this week. He outlined that the “objectives have been achieved and exceeded in many instances. Clare County Council have continued to provide resources to its Fire Service in order that the service to the public is maintained to the highest standards, and …

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Clare councillor blasts Minister Ryan’s ‘dictatorship’

WITH UL and Clare County Council having sought a strategic development zone designation for their ‘new town’ proposal, opposition to the plan within government was criticised by a local councillor. When Transport Minister Eamon Ryan addressed the County Council last week, he spoke about bringing university courses to Ennis, given it has existing infrastructure, which prompted an angry intervention from Councillor Tony O’Brien. “Are you trying to close down East Clare?” he bellowed at the Green Party leader. Referring to the UL project, he said there are 214 acres of land for development in East Clare, but if the Minister got his way the people of the area could “pack up our tents and go away”. Speaking to the Clare Champion subsequently, Councillor O’Brien said that Minister Ryan’s opposition to the development, and to the Northern Distributor Road is contrary to the principle of having effective local Government. “We have a county development plan, which we voted on and which …

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Locals suffer as holiday homes and Air BnB lets abound in Clare

THE fact the local authority is prohibited from acquiring second hand houses means more and more properties will end up as holiday homes, a meeting of Clare County Council has heard.  Councillor Cillian Murphy put forward a motion asking that Clare County Council request that counties with large numbers of holiday homes be exempted from an embargo in place on acquiring houses. He said he knew of a case where a family had been reared in a local authority house. In recent times when the mother of the family had wanted to move away, she had gone to the Council first as she wanted another generation to have the option that her family had. However she was told that was not possible, as the the Council have been directed to focus on the construction of homes, and that there is a country wide embargo, with only 200 houses per annum to be purchased. Councillor Murphy said that in west Clare …

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Who wants the Púca? Applications open in Clare for statue

COMMUNITIES across North Clare have until March 24 to stake their claim for a chance to host the now famous statue of the mythical Púca.  Last month, a majority of residents of Ennistymon rejected the planned sculpture, following a long-running controversy over the nature of the design as well as the public consultation process. After the Council confirmed the change of plan, applications are now being accepted from other areas interested in giving a home to the two-metre high bronze artwork.  The local authority this Thursday publicised a list of criteria that communities will need to meet in order to be considered as the new home of the Púca. For the moment, applications will only be considered from the North Clare Electoral Area and details of the exact location as well as written consent from the landowner must be provided. In addition, applicants must show “demonstrable community buy-in” through meetings and surveys. They must also prove they can create a …

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