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Oakfield Drive Residents Intimidated

Oakfield Drive bonfire remains after local celebrations.

Numerous Residents living in the Oakfield Drive, Stradavoher, area of Thurles claim they were intimidated by youths, who threw fireworks and bangers, deliberately targeting  private homes in this area.

Just one of many emails received today, sums up the torment experienced during the night by residents in this area.

Dear sir, 

It is just past midnight and I am sitting on my hall stairs waiting for the next banger to come at my house. Steadily since 8pm there has been bangers and screamers aimed at my home, the third one blew the letter box both inside and out from my door, and blew the curtain from its hooks on the inside of the front door. I have literally been sick with fright since then.

There is a bonfire built in the middle of our green, latter which was looking lovely up till now, and there is a gang of between 10 and 25 young boys and girls hanging around it. Every now and again they go off as if like commandos in different directions and pelt bangers/screamers at 3 specific houses, mine included.

Why? I do not know,I was in my kitchen baking when the banger hit my door, so its not as if I was out haranguing them about the noise. The gardai have been called and they have called up to the estate not once, not twice, but at least 6 times since 8.00pm, they are understaffed and its a bad night to be on call.

I understand this, but every year for the past 4 years the same behaviour has gone on in this estate and there is nothing being done about it. One of the boys mothers is actually standing  watching while her “pride and joy” harasses and terrorises his neighbours, and no I am not joking.

I am sick to my stomach at the blatant lack of respect shown to neighbours here tonight but what can I expect any more? I have to be up for work in 6 hours and there is no way I am sleeping tonight with my letterbox gone, I have no way of covering it till the morning and I am terrified of what they will put through it next. This is 2011 and Thurles town, not the 1970’s in Belfast.

Yours, just one of many frightened resident. (Authors name withheld.)

We examined this complaint earlier today, and were amazed to see that amongst the contents used in the bonfire were old carpets, and other property owned by Thurles Town Council.

The law is quite clear on this matter. Relevant legislation on this issue includes Section 32 of the Waste Management Act 1996 to 2005 and Section 4 of the Air Pollution Act 1987.  The main objective of this legislation is to prevent environmental pollution and the creation of nuisance emissions respectively.  Section 32 of the Waste Management Acts 1996 to 2005 states a “person shall not hold, transport, recover or dispose of waste in a manner that causes or is likely to cause environmental pollution“.  Section 4 of the Air Pollution Act, 1987 defines air pollution as “a condition of the atmosphere in which a pollutant is present in such a quantity as to be liable to:-
(i) be injurious to public health, or
(ii) have a deleterious effect on flora or fauna or damage property, or
(iii) impair or interfere with amenities or with the environment.”

If the burning results in any of the three points above, in particular cause a nuisance as in point (iii,) then air pollution would be considered to have been caused. We have advised the residents who contacted us that they should contact the Environment Section of their County Council, as some county and local authorities have made bye-laws to regulate this matter.

The question now remains “Has Thurles Town Council implemented bye-laws to protect, not just humans, but also wildlife and pets.”  If not then when do they intend to implement same, in an effort to protect frightened town residents.

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5 comments to Oakfield Drive Residents Intimidated

  • Chris

    Thurles Town Council owns houses in that estate. If any of their tenants were involved (which is normally the case. examples Cabra Court, Monakeeba) then there needs to be evictions. A knew a woman once up that way who rented a house (not off the council) and had to leave cause of council tenants stealing/vandalising/smashing windows/threats/abuse.

  • Patsy

    My brother in law and family had to move from that estate a few years back again because of actions on Halloween night, and its the same people involved each time. I understand that the council/gardaí have their hands tied and have to follow procedures and laws and it takes time to make people responsible for their actions, but what shocks me (although it really should not) is where are the parents in all of this? Why are their kids allowed out on such a night when they know well what is going to happen? In my teens I would have had my arse kicked for behaving like that.

  • Chris

    The Gardaí are pretty stretched for resources when it comes to policing but the town council has no excuse for its failures and is doing nothing to ensure the safety and security of their estates. I don’t want to come across as profiling people in social housing as majority do need it and are great honest people (who are unfortunate to have to put up with these people terrorising them) but we all know there is a level of thefts, anti-social behaviour, vandalism and drugs going on in a number of council houses in various estates and it seems nothing is ever done about it. Drug dealers benefit cheats etc get houses because they know how to play the system and the people like the elderly or the genuinely unemployed people are never considered for these houses. Not a fan of quangos but one needs to be set up to take over the responsibilities of providing social housing and take this power off the councils. Im sorry to hear about your brother in law Patsy. Why should a family have to leave an estate lose their home just to feel safe over something the council could have sorted out.

  • Chris,I totally agree, we make laws and more laws and laws about laws, but none are ever implemented. Residents should be called together, rules explained and “two strikes and you are out.”
    The majority still believe that politicians magically provide required money for social housing. Politicians have told them this mis-information. When will we understand that the taxpayer pays for all?
    Taxpayers are now in short supply, if we look at recent government revenue figures.

  • Council House Tenant

    Did it ever occur to ask why certain houses were targeted? Intergration is all very well, but it appears reproduction is the only necessity to obtain a council house. Is it true a married couple with one child and job would be turned down for a family house over a lone parent, claiming benefits with 2 or more dependants? I would have thought the want of actually seeing tenants realistically going for a council mortgage would overcome such flippant excuse to house every damsel in distress. Come on they appear to be having designer babies in order to lap it up. I’m all for equality but what is the ratio of couples getting houses to lone parents today? What this person says may be true-which is unacceptable, but you should have gone to the council direct with your problem.You are still a resident and in my opinion have now put yourself + family at risk to such people, stirring ‘1970’s Belfast’ with an e-mail on the world wide web. How dare you downgrade a place where people are trying to buy and sell houses did it ever occur to you that not every one there is renting? That not everyone experiences or has had such problems?……Like most estates idle hands lead to the devils work but it will quieten down to nothing when the kids get older. PEACE TO YOU AND YOUR’S!

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