Monday 26 September 2016

Details of St. Ita's garden plan needed



Published 23/10/2012 | 15:08

St. Ita's Hospital, Portrane.
St. Ita's Hospital, Portrane.

GREATER detail from the backers of a proposal to bring the walled gardens at St.

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Ita's Hospital in Portrane into community use are required before Fingal County Council can assist with moving the project forward. At a Balbriggan/Swords area committee meeting, councillors urged the local authority to enter discussions with the HSE to bring about the proposal put forward by the Donabate-Portrane Transition Towns organisation. In response, the council said that since last month's meeting, the parks and heritage properties division had been made aware of the outline concepts of a plan for a community garden project within the environs of St. Ita's. However, it stated that the proposal was lacking in sufficient detail and it planned to arrange a meeting with the local group to seek further information before it approached the HSE. Cllr. Gerry McGuire (Lab) said there was some urgency on the issue as the HSE was currently undertaking a planning design process for the relocation of the Central Mental Hospital from Dundrum to Portrane which would include the walled gardens. ' Those walled gardens are older than the hospital itself and should be brought into use for both the community and for the hospital,' he added. A council official told the meeting that the control and ownership of the land was not with the council and at best it could offer supporting advice and possibly some technical knowledge. It added the while the proposal as it stands was lacking in detail and that the group had had no real coordinated approach to the council. 'We have no detail other than what's accessible on general website,' the meeting was told. 'We have always supported community garden projects where appropriate and where we have control over the land. In this case, a third party has full control and ownership and the level of appropriate intervention is not clear and appropriate' Councillors agreed to get in touch with the transition towns group in order to get them to furnish more detail about the project.

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