Breakthrough in new walking route plan

IT'S now up to Listowel area county councillors to get the GST plans for the walking route on the old railway line into town up and running by talking to landowners who are still opposed to plans.

That's the opinion of the GST supporters at least, following on from last week's meeting which showed exactly how much support exists for the plan.

If realised, the walk route could bring thousands of visitors into Listowel each year in a massive boost for the local economy. But the plan to extend the GST from the west Limerick border into Listowel is still at an impasse as a group of landowners on the route remain opposed it.

However, something of a major breakthrough occured last week as the North Kerry Abandoned Rail Line Action Group (NKARLAG) - which represents the landowners opposed to the plan - relinquished its 'adverse possession' claim on the old CIE line, acknowledging CIE as the rightful owner still. Meanwhile, NKARLAG members have also indicated they will talk to both CIE and Kerry County Council to address their concerns.

County Manager Tom Curran has also agreed to meet a delegation of public representatives and residents following on from the recent door-to-door survey of households along the line which found 80 per cent of residents are in favour of the trail. That delegation will be led by Listowel Mayor Jimmy Moloney in an effort to secure the explicit support of the local authority.

Only 15 landowners did not communicate their views to the survey, but indicated they would talk to CIE and Kerry County Council.

"Given that the NKARLAG has written to CIE to confirm that it will not be proceeding with an Adverse Possession Claim, the onus is now firmly on the five Listowel local area councillors: John Brassil (FF), Pat Leahy (Lab), Robert Beasley (SF), Tim Buckley (FG) and Liam Purtill (FG) to speak with the 15 remaining landowners to address their concerns," GST organiser Gearóid Pierse said.


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