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Sligo would ‘act as perfect location for passport office’ says Cllr Casserly


Stock image.

Stock image.

Stock image.


A public passport office is required in Sligo to service people and communities in this region of the country according to Cllr Marie Casserly.

Cllr Casserly stated that in light of the huge increase in passport applications and consequent challenges in delayed in the system that Sligo would act as the perfect location for a fourth passport office to service the people in the West, North-West and North of Ireland.

“Following the Good Friday Agreement people in Northern Ireland could be declared British or Irish or both,” she said.

In light of Brexit, she outlined an increase in those eligible hoping to claim EU citizenship and that Sligo acts as an ideal location for a variety of needs.

Cllr Thomas Healy proposed a delegation from Sligo County Council request a meeting with Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Conveney to discuss plans to bring an office to Sligo.

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Cllr Thomas Walsh highlighted that the Tánaiste, Leo Varadkar, had already indicated an office could be opened in the West of Ireland and it is important councillors make it known they want a permanent office in the county.

“There has been a big increase in staff working in the passport office, that’s going to increase further. We’re looking at the possibility of an additional passport office in the west of the country that would help people out as well,” Mr Varadkar said.

“The Government acknowledges that we are facing a lot of delays when it comes to providing passports for people.”

Cllr Walsh said he is currently dealing with 8-10 passport queries per week and there is an issue with passport staff who had been reallocated to other sectors during the pandemic.

Cllr Arthur Gibbons stated the passport system ‘needs a good shaking’ and relayed a story of a woman who lost €3,000 that had been spent on a family holiday because of delays in receiving a passport that she had submitted well in advance.

Cllr Sinead Maguire said passport delays are having far-reaching impacts on people’s opportunities and spoke of a then 17-year-old child who had still not received their passport by age 20, meaning they were unable to accept an educational opportunity.

Previous plans for a passport office in Sligo identified Tubbercurry as a potential location and Cllr Joseph Queenan stated he hopes this will still be the case.