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Breda Moloney outside the mobile home which the County Council provided for her and her younger sister Margaret at Ballymalone, Tuamgraney. Photograph by John Kelly

Woman, 66, vows to fight enforcement notice on her mobile home

An EAST Clare woman, who is living in deplorable living conditions without any central heating, electricity or running water in her mobile home, has vowed to challenge an enforcement notice about her accommodation in the “District, Circuit or High Court”.

Clare County Council has been accused of breaking its own rules after the planning section confirmed it doesn’t wish to take any further action concerning an enforcement notice issued on December 11, 2017 relating to the alleged “unauthorised storage of two mobile homes, one caravan and ancillary services” by its own housing department at Ballymalone, Tuamgraney.

Duncan Young, who has lived in Ballymalone for some years and complained about this planning crux, believes the council has now set a new precedent by allowing a person to live in a mobile home allegedly without any planning permission for the last five years, which could be replicated by others in Clare.

A council spokesman said: “As this remains an open and ongoing case within the Social Development Directorate, the council cannot comment at this time.”

Speaking to the Clare Champion, Breda Moloney (66) said she spent from December 22 until January 1 receiving medical treatment in University Hospital Limerick (UHL) after she had gotten very sick and was vomiting.

She said her sister, Margaret, (59) who is also living in the mobile home, broke her leg recently and spent three months in Croom Orthopaedic Hospital, University Hospital Limerick and nursing homes in Killaloe and Kilrush.

“They don’t give a damn about me, I might as well lie down on the road here. I have been contacting the health board and the council to do something.

“I am 66 years old. I never had light, water or a television in my life. I have no heating only a barrel of gas for a gas burner. It is cruelty what they are doing to us,” she claimed.

She said the first derelict mobile home on the site is her own going back to 1992 when they were granted planning permission for a timber frame dwelling with three bedrooms, bathrooms and other facilities on the site.

She said the council brought the second mobile home to the site following the intervention of the health authority.

She stated this mobile home is now rotten, leaking and is attracting rats.

“The planning section would want to wake up. I will take them on to the highest court in the land. I have planning permission for the mobile home to be on my land while I am awaiting the erection of a timber house. I got planning permission in 2014.

Pressed about the enforcement notice, which refers to an “unauthorised development” on the site, she said, “Let them take me to court, District, Circuit, High Court I will meet them any day of the week provided I am not going into hospital. I have a pile of hospital appointments up until the end of February.

Asked how she manages to live without running water or electricity in very difficult living conditions, she said, “I never had it in my life, a doctor came out here to see the mobile home and if he didn’t get a heart attack, he never will.

“The district nurses can’t wash their hands if they come to treat us. I have to go down to them. I am 30 years on the housing list and they are saying one letter got lost a year ago,” she said.

Asked about accepting social housing, she said she didn’t want to live in a town because of the noise and possibility of anti-social behaviour.

She said that dogs are being treated better than herself and her sister.

“I have a dog and look at the way it is treated, we don’t do that to them. We have blankets for them. We don’t do this to the dogs or the animals. I would go hunger to feed an animal. I have animals to sell but I can’t sell them at the moment because the marts are only opening on January 14.

“The rats are coming in and you know what they bring – disease. Rats are eating my clothes and paper in bags.

“The old mobile home was supposed to be taken away but it wasn’t done. I never had a shower in my home place in my life. These are the conditions that I am left with.”

She said she knows Travellers in Limerick City who are being provided with running water.

She said she would live to live in a timber chalet costing in the region of €25,000. Asked if she would live in an urban area, she said she has to be living near her cattle.

“I am not moving out of here. They have to put a timber house here. I am not going back into the farmhouse.

“We need someone in authority to step in and help us. We have a social worker who is ashamed what she has reported back to the health board and the council.

“I am a patient going back to 1980 when I had a massive tumour removed. We were living in the home place (farmhouse) that time and they still did nothing for us. They are quite well aware of it because they have a large file belonging to me.

“I have been to Nenagh, Ennis, Barrington’s St John’s, Bon Secours Hospital, Tralee, University Hospital Limerick and University Hospital Galway. They are concerned about me because I have cancer.

“I just want peace for what is left in my life. When I give up, I will be going to the nursing home. They can do what they like with what is here. I have no home. If I had a home, I would have heat and a wash and I would have something. Why have we to suffer?”

She said that she had contacted public representatives for assistance without any success.

The Mid-West HSE Community Health Care didn’t respond to Clare Champion queries.

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