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No ‘false promises’ from council over road repairs: Paddy Donnelly


The repair job done on the Ballymakenny Road

The repair job done on the Ballymakenny Road

The repair job done on the Ballymakenny Road


DIRECTOR of Services with Louth County Council, Paddy Donnelly, has defended the council’s position in relation to proposed road improvements around Drogheda that did not go ahead or were delayed over the summer, denying they made “false promises” to councillors or were being “disrespectful” in their actions.

The storm arose after Cllr Kevin Callan criticised the council for not carrying out a commitment to complete works at the junction of Beechgrove and Crushrod Avenue on the Ballymakenny Road.
He said he was told in July the road would be properly done, but that was “not honoured” and he now had “serious concerns about the way things are done.”

He says we are now in September and that area is impacted by school traffic. “Why are we doing it now?,” he asked.

Works were done on Thomas Street but it wasn’t a priority in relation to school traffic. “There’s no excuse for it,” he claimed.

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The big issue he feels is that he raises these matters because local people come to him and ask for them to be tackled. “I come and ask the questions and I’m told it will be done, so it should be,” the councillor continued.

Darius Messayeh from Drogheda Borough Council said the Beechgrove works were down for the contractor to be done but they wanted to finish other jobs first of all. He says it will take half a day to complete.
Other councillors also expressed concerns about road surfaces and footpaths before Mr Donnelly stated that no members of the management team or staff of the council make “false promises” in relation to works and they work “diligently to address the needs of the people of Co Louth.”

He said there can be “misunderstandings” but the past year had been a difficult one with COVID, but works had restarted.

“No-one is being disrespectful, matters are raised and discussed, but all can’t be programmed in immediately. We can make apologies for misunderstandings but we are not misleading anyone.”

Cllr Callan said they all work together when issues arise, but people wanted the basics - empty bins, clean streets and good roads.

“There are specific things we need, we are not dreaming here. Other places have these works done at this stage.”

Mr Donnelly replied that “there can be any issue why works are not done, even if promised in Drogheda.”

They were “at the mercy of people” when it comes to tenders for projects and that can be a challenge at times.

Cllr Michelle Hall said the roads around the area were a disgrace. “There’s no place as bad for potholes,” she remarked, stating that she had travelled around the country. “There’s patchwork all over the place and I was down in Clare and didn’t see one pothole. How can Drogheda be a Destination Town when you need a four wheel drive to get around it. Are large rural areas getting too much funding, is it being spread out properly,” she asked, stating that the likes of Drogheda had a lot of traffic.
“I would not agree that the roads are the worst in the country. We will be playing catch up, but the roads programme will be delivered,” Mr Donnelly said.