While he may be a man under pressure as the country finds itself in the midst of a housing crisis, there were plenty of smiles from Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Eoghan Murphy as he arrived in Wexford to cut the ribbon on a total of five new social housing projects.
Accompanied by local representatives, housing officials and contractors, the Minister started his day in Gorey before making his way south to Castlebridge, Wexford town and Rosslare. The first ribbon cut was on Baile Eoghain, a new nine house development in Gorey designed and constructed by Wexford County Council. It comprises of three, 2-bed houses, five 3-bed houses and 1 four-bed house.
There were two new developments for the Minister to visit in Castlebridge. Willow View is a ten house development of privately constructed houses, comprising of two 2-bed semi-detached houses, two 2-bed bungalows and six three-bed semi-detached houses which were acquired by the approved housing body Cooperative housing Ireland for social housing purposes. He was also delighted to meet families who had collected the keys to their 3-bed homes in Rath an Dúin, a turnkey development of three houses purchased by the council.
There was a further two social houses in Rosetown Rosslare, one of which had been specially adapted to meet the needs of the new tenants, while the largest development he officially opened was 35 houses at Ard Uisce on Whiterock Hill. The development was a turnkey scheme within a larger development and contains a mixture of two and three bed houses.
In total, 59 families have been accommodated as a result of these five projects, taking them off the county's housing list.
Speaking at the openings, Minister Murphy congratulated those involved in bringing the social housing projects to fruition.
'One of the most rewarding parts of my job as Minister is the opportunity to travel around the country meeting families as they get the keys to their own home, and today I want to wish these families happiness in your new homes,' said Minister Murphy. 'I also want to reassure those who continue to seek accommodation that Government and the local authorities are making real progress in the delivery of social housing solutions and that there will be many days like today in the weeks and months ahead for many other families.'
Finally, the Minister acknowledged the work being done within Wexford County Council in the provision of social housing and added 'I and my department will not be found wanting in our continued support of your efforts'.