Castle repairs to cost €260,000
The cost of repairing Terrerath Castle is expected to amount to more than €260,000.
Councillors discussed ways the road running alongside the castle can be opened as quickly as possible, including taking down the upper part of the Norman tower until such time as funding is provided for its restoration.
Speaking at the monthly meeting of New Ross Municipal District, Cllr Martin Murphy asked if the council executive are any closer to finding a solution to the road closure.
District director Eamonn Hore said the senior planner visited the castle and surveyed it.
'To reinstate it would cost between €250,000 and €260,000. The next step is to go to the department with that,' Mr Hore said.
He said funds need to be made available to reinstate the national monument.
'We would be delighted to reinstate it. In the meantime the road is closed for the right reasons. Obviously we will progress this as quickly as possible.'
Cllr Willie Fitzharris said: 'I don't see any evidence of any reason behind it. We need to establish there is going to have to be a certain amount of demolition before it can be reinstated.
'It could be done in two phases. The demolition of it should be done sooner rather than later. I know money won't come in in a timely fashion but two years is too long. It's up to us to give a definite answer to the people affected.'
Cllr Michael Whelan called for the council to pass a motion for a solution to be found by the OPW as quickly as possible.
Cllr Larry O'Brien called for the road to be widened. 'We should realign that road a small bit. We have St Bridget's Well so we could make something of that. There is a bad bend on the road so maybe we could realign it and avoid the castle. Still no-one has told me about the historic value of this castle, only that it's a national monument. I don't see the value in spending half a million on restoring it. It's something that we ignored for 50 years; ivy was growing on it and we never looked at it. It's not in our possession but lads the waste of money here.'
Cllr O'Brien said there are hundreds of similar Norman buildings nationally. 'Eventually they will fall. Let us remember Mountgarrett Castle; the road was detoured for a long time and it still fell. It doesn't look good now.'
Mr Hore said the total figure should amount to around €260,000, not €500,000.
Cathaoirleach Cllr John Fleming said the final figure will come to significantly more.
Cllr Murphy said The Department of Heritage, the OPW and the National Monument body are all aware of the cost.
Mr Hore said road closure signage for passing drivers is top class, adding that delays of less than four minutes on either side of the road are inconveniencing residents.
New Ross Standard