| 5°C Dublin

Cars to be allowed back on to part of Dollymount beach





Cars are to be allowed back on to the beach at Dollymount.

Vehicles will, however, only be able to access the beach from the Wooden Bridge entrance.

They are still banned from the rest of the beach and therefore still can't access the beach from the Causeway Road entrance.

Until last June, Dollymount was the only beach that Dubliners could drive on to.

Beach goers were furious when a ban on vehicles on the popular beach was imposed over the summer, saying it would affect the elderly and people with mobility problems hardest.

The council had erected barriers at the Wooden Bridge and Causeway Road entrances to the 5km beach, between Clontarf and Raheny, to prevent motorists from driving on to the sand.

Fianna Fail councillor Sean Haughey said that the council is now set to prepare a new management plan for Dollymount beach.

"Earlier this year, the council unilaterally banned vehicular access to the beach without any prior consultation. This action caused great distress to many people, particularly the elderly and the disabled, who could no longer access this popular amenity.

"I strongly condemned this action at the time and called for the removal of the temporary barriers so that full and meaningful discussions could take place on the matter.


"The City Parks Superintendent has now agreed to open up two parking bays for cars as you come off the wooden bridge.

"A new plan will be drawn up for the beach by May 2015," he said.

The plan will deal with traffic management and car parking issues as well as improving the set-down areas.

"Public consultation must be central to the preparation of this new plan so that all the relevant stakeholders can buy in to any new arrangements put in place for next summer," the councillor added.

During the summer, the council stated that following strong advice from the gardai, management in the parks service made a decision to end vehicular access to the beach. It said that the decision was being monitored.

Minister of State Aodhan O Riordain tweeted the news that councillors got "agreement from DCC for partial vehicular access to Dollymount beach to be restored pending a full parking plan by May 2015."

It is not possible to predict the outcome of the consultation process. Some restrictions may be imposed rather than an outright ban, a source said.