Home » Tag Archives: mica (page 2)

Tag Archives: mica

Donegal activist: people must pull together

ONE of the country’s most vocal campaigners on defective concrete blocks has appealed to Clare homeowners to work with him for better redress. Paddy Diver joined a remote meeting of the Clare Pyrite Action Group on Friday, just hours after they spoke to Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien. Mr Diver from Donegal is one of up to 5,000 homeowners affected by mica. Like pyrite, mica causes defects that lead to cracking and crumbling of blocks. The Donegal activist was updated on the minister’s pledge to give a decision, in a matter of weeks, on the Council’s application for access to the Defective Concrete Blocks Grant Scheme. Mr Diver is a member of the working group looking for an increase in redress from 90 to 100% and one of the organisers of a protest in Dublin last June. “The light at the end of the tunnel is in all counties coming together,” he told the meeting. “In Donegal, we were kept on …

Read More »

Demand for accountability from manufacturers

THE Minister for Housing took the opportunity, while visiting Clare, to reaffirm his commitment to pursuing those responsible for supplying defective building materials. At the home of Mary and Séamus Hanley in Drumline, several members of the Clare Pyrite Action Committee were present to hear what Minister Darragh O’Brien had to say. In the garden of the retired couple’s home, some members of the action group took the opportunity to question the minister directly. “The main culprits in all of this, of course, are the manufacturers of the blocks,” one Newmarket-on-Fergus man told the minister. “These are some of the biggest companies in Ireland, making massive profits. The Taoiseach made a statement a couple of weeks ago that he is going to speak to the Attorney General in relation to going after these companies, can you give us an update on that please?” In response, the minister said: “I made that statement too. Because if you look at the legislation …

Read More »

Council informed of pyrite in Clare in 2018

IT HAS emerged that problems with pyrite were brought to the attention of Clare County Council a number of years ago, by Deputy Joe Carey. The Fine Gael TD confirmed that he raised the matter in the Dáil in 2018 and then contacted the local authority. “I was advised by ministers to contact Clare County Council to put in train a submission, exactly what’s happening now,” he said. “Unfortunately, Clare County Council didn’t act on that representation, which I made repeatedly to them back then.” Correspondence, seen by The Champion, shows that Deputy Carey contacted the Council’s Chief Executive in April 2018, raising concerns after meeting a number of homeowners. He supplied the council with the reply to a Dáil question on the matter. In his emails, Deputy Carey outlined how, in the case of Limerick, their chief executive had supported an application to the Pyrite Remediation Scheme, which funds repairs to foundations and hardcore. He asked that efforts be …

Read More »

‘We don’t have ten years to wait,’ homeowners tell minister

A RETIRED Drumline couple have made an emotional appeal to the housing minister for funds to repair their severely cracked house, saying they don’t have a decade to wait. Pensioners Mary and Séamus Hanley showed Darragh O’Brien the devastating impact of pyrite when he visited their home last Friday. “Some of us, like myself, are on our pensions and we certainly don’t have forever to wait,” Mrs Hanley said. “I don’t have ten years to wait. I could be six foot under, at that stage, but I want my house replaced and repaired.” The retired school principal also told the minister of a number of former pupils in their 30s who have discovered pyrite in their homes. Mrs Hanley was also among three members of the Clare Pyrite Action Group to have a meeting with the minister in relation to an application by the local authority to extend access of the Defective Concrete Blocks Grant Scheme. The Hanley’s home was …

Read More »

Minister promises Clare pyrite redress decision ‘in weeks’

THE Housing Minister has assured Clare homeowners affected by pyrite that his department make a decision on giving them access to a redress scheme “within a matter of weeks”. Speaking on an official visit to the county today (Friday, August 27), Minister Darragh O’Brien said he wanted an application by the local authority for the extension of the Defective Concrete Blocks Scheme to Clare to be decided on without delay. Following a meeting in Ennis with Dr Martina Cleary and two other members of The Clare Pyrite Action Group, Minister O’Brien said: “I want to bring the submission part and the review of the submission part to a conclusion in a matter of weeks… Subject to the submission meeting the criteria that is set there, then we can move along quite quickly. It’s a serious issue for homeowners My priority is for homes, principal private residences that we can start to look at getting them remediated soon.” The minister also …

Read More »

Minister to visit Clare pyrite home

STRICKEN homeowners affected by pyrite will have the opportunity on Friday (August 27) to ask the Housing Minister directly for support. Minister Darragh O’Brien is to meet members of the Clare Pyrite Action Group in Ennis before travelling to one of their homes to see first-hand the devastating impact of defective blocks. The Department of Housing is in receipt, since the end of July, of a detailed report compiled by the local authority to prove the presence of pyrite. The detailed technical document asks that the Defective Concrete Blocks Scheme be extended to Clare. Dr Martina Cleary, founder of the action group, will be among those to meet the minister. “I hope he’s listening and will take the situation seriously,” she said. “There is no excuse now to delay redress for homeowners here. The evidence is there. He had already visited and provided independent support for his own constituents and that’s more than he has done for us to-date. We’ve …

Read More »

Minister knew of pyrite for nine years

Anger over O’Brien’s response to problem in own constituency compared to Clare THE founder of the Clare Pyrite Action Group has expressed outrage at the fact the Housing Minister highlighted the presence of defective concrete blocks in homes here as far back as 2012, but has still not extended redress to this county. Darragh O’Brien was a senator at the time. The Fianna Fáil member raised the presence of pyrite in homes in Clare during a Seanad debate on a failed Bill aimed at extending the time-frame for homeowners to take legal actions. There is also anger at how the minister has promptly responded to reports of pyrite issues in his own constituency, without visiting affected homes in Clare. Dr Martina Cleary said that in light of his official knowledge, the fact that the minister has still not extended the Defective Concrete Blocks Scheme to Clare is deeply shocking. “Minister O’Brien is on record, nine years ago, talking about pyrite …

Read More »

Donegal blocks campaigner expresses solidarity with Clare homeowners

THE founder of a Donegal action group on defective concrete blocks is urging homeowners in Clare to work together on a national campaign for better redress. Paddy Diver from Carndonagh said an “all-Ireland movement” is needed to persuade the government to extend the Defective Concrete Blocks Scheme to counties beyond Donegal and Mayo, and to increase the level of redress to 100%. Mr Diver, who is part of a working group set up to examine the scheme, warned that the situation in Clare, where more than 50 homeowners have joined a local action group, may yet be as serious as that in Donegal where an estimated 5,000 homes are affected. While County Donegal homes are experiencing damage due to mica, its impact is similar to that caused by the pyrite that is present in Mayo, Clare and potentially several other counties. “We really need to pull together on this,” Mr Diver told The Champion. “Whatever we get from government, it’ll …

Read More »