RESIDENTS IN parts of Brackenstown endured what should be the last time they have had to drive past their local polling station to vote more than a mile away.
Residents on Park Avenue and Brackenstown Road have had to put up with the farcical situation since they found themselves on the wrong side of the line when the Swords was split into two constituencies. The Constituency Commission has now reversed that situation and reunited Swords in a single constituency to be known as Dublin Fingal but the change did not come in time for the referendum on children's rights. Once again, residents in the area had to ignore the polling station right across the road and get in their cars to go and cast their vote in River Valley.
To make sure residents knew where they were voting this time around, local councillor, Cllr Darragh Butler dropped letters in the area prior to the referendum date explaining the situation. He told residents: 'Although we were successful in getting all of Swords re-united into the new constituency of Dublin Fingal (previously Dublin North), unfortunately this has come too late for the referendum this coming Saturday. 'For the next General and council elections you will most definitely vote across the road in St. Cronan's School but unfortunately this coming Saturday you are still due to vote in Holy Family National School, River Valley. 'Although the Boundary Commission report recommended that all of Swords be re-united in Dublin Fingal, the legislative changes have not yet gone through Dáil Éireann.
Fingal County Council are putting these changes in place also, but unfortunately this referendum has to be held based on the old boundaries.' Fingal County Council confirmed the boundary changes would not be in force in time for the referendum, saying: 'I refer to the recent boundary change proposals in respect of Dublin North and Dublin West as it relates to the electorate in the Brackenstown Road/Village, Park Avenue and Knocksedan. 'Please note that any elections held along Dáil boundaries, such as the referendum on children's rights, will necessitate the electorate voting in the Holy Family National School, River Valley. This will remain the position until the necessary legislative changes are made and the dissolution of the current Dáil.'