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Wednesday 21 November 2018

IFA lodges objection to South Kerry greenway

Pic: Don MacMonagle
Pic: Don MacMonagle
Margaret Donnelly

Margaret Donnelly

IFA has made a submission to An Bord Pleanála objecting to the proposed South Kerry Greenway project.

It says that this is due to the failure of Kerry County Council (KCC) to adhere to Government policy on greenway development, as well as not honouring a commitment given to landowners that lands would not be compulsorily acquired.

IFA National Environment Chairman Thomas Cooney said it regretted the move, as it supports the promotion of agri-tourism and economic activity in rural areas, but it has to "restore the rights of the farmers affected”.

Kerry IFA Chairman Pat O’Driscoll said that farmers impacted by this proposed greenway feel misled.

Farmers protest against south Kerry greenway forced land sales . Mike Sheehy from Renard Caherciveen .Photo By : Domnick Walsh
Farmers protest against south Kerry greenway forced land sales . Mike Sheehy from Renard Caherciveen .Photo By : Domnick Walsh

"When the project started, they were clearly told CPOs were off the table, yet the Council ignored this commitment and is now seeking to use the offices of An Bord Pleanála to compulsorily carve up almost 50pc of the farm holdings, for a cycle track.

"This is not acceptable and it’s not in keeping with the Government’s policy for greenway development, which requires local authorities to design greenways ‘to traverse field boundaries and hedgelines to avoid severance."

He said that the Council does not understand the impact of this proposed cycle track on farming activity.

"It has failed to listen to, record or respond to the alternative routing proposals put forward by landowners or appoint an agronomist to liaise with landowners. This all contravenes the Government’s policy on greenways, which is required in order for funding to be made available to build the cycle track."

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