'All we have had is politicians looking for photo opportunities and then clearing off back to Dublin and doing nothing'
HENRY O’DONNELL counts himself relatively lucky that only about 10 acres of his holding was affected by last month’s severe storms in Donegal.
“I had a 10-acre field of red clover badly affected by the storms but my neighbour had all his fencing washed away during the rains and he had only completed re-fencing his farm,” says Henry.
“I could see what was happening from my kitchen window but luckily I was on the right side of the Crana river and wasn’t badly affected.
“Farmers up here took a back seat when the storms struck first.
“They didn’t want to be complaining considering the awful amount of damage caused by the storms to people’s homes in the area and to the bridges and roads all around, but now that the storms have passed the problems caused to the farming community will have to be addressed.”
Henry (50) estimates that up to 300 farms on Inishowen were damaged to varying degrees by the storms.
He farms 90 hectares of owned land and commonage near the Sliabh Sneacht mountain in Drumfries on the Inishowen peninsula where he runs a suckler and sheep enterprise. He is married to Susan and the couple have two young daughters, Ellie (12) and Ava (7).
There are 30 acres around the farmhouse which he uses for grazing and silage, with the rest of his land located in and around the landmark mountain. He has some 80 sheep on the mountain and a dozen continental sucklers as his main farming enterprise.