Wicklow People

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Safety concerns in Glendalough

The Upper Lake in Glendalough is extremely, even lethally, dangerous. Up to the last year or so, there have been clear and conspicuous notices indicating the danger, and forbidding swimming. For some reason, these were removed and there seems to be positive encouragement instead to use the area at the lakeside as a beach.

Dear Sir,

The Upper Lake in Glendalough is extremely, even lethally, dangerous.

Up to the last year or so, there have been clear and conspicuous notices indicating the danger, and forbidding swimming.

For some reason, these were removed and there seems to be positive encouragement instead to use the area at the lakeside as a beach.

Passing by on a fine summer's day, I have been horrified to watch 30 and more children and teenagers paddling, swimming, playing ball, and generally messing about in the water.

It was a tragedy waiting to happen, and unfortunately it did happen, with the drowning of a 12-year-old girl.

Has it taken the loss of a precious young life to bring back sanity and concern for safety? The signs need to be put back at once, and the area patrolled.

County Wicklow is blessed with an abundance of great beaches and amenity areas for recreational activities.

In Glendalough, it has one of the two or three most precious heritage and sacred places in the whole country.

The majority of people who come there from Dublin, from other parts of the country, and from overseas, come for the exceptional beauty, peace and tranquility of the place.

Whether they come as strollers, walkers, hilllwalkers, hikers, or pilgrims, they appreciate this extraordinary atmosphere, unlike anything found elsewhere.

What a shame that some of the bodies responsible for the area seem hell-bent on destroying precisely what is uniquely valuable in Glendalough!

The encouragement of 'beach' activity in the area of Kevin's Wilderness and the tacky, inappropriate commercialism at the entrance to the monastic site itself is a disgrace to County Wicklow.

One sees no such activity at Newgrange, Clonmacnoise or any other great heritage site which is also a major tourist attraction.

The area at the unique and beautiful monastic entrance archway and along the bank of the Glendassan River, which could be so attractive, is jammed with very unattractive commercial enterprises, apparently licensed by Wicklow County Council.

The crowds of people, including children and toddlers, gathering in the greatly restricted space where cars are reversing or trying to pass, constitute yet another danger. Do we wait for another tragedy?

Even from an economic point of view, in destroying the unique and highly-valued atmosphere of Glendalough, one is eventually going to kill the goose that lays the golden egg.

If one wants to promote tourism, why not concentrate on the uniqueness of Glendalough, and promote that?

Yours sincerely,

Margaret Byrne,

Glendalough.


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