Lowry calls on 32nd Dáil to engage in urgent constructive debate on rural Ireland
Independent TD Michael Lowry has called for an immediate, focused and balanced debate by all elected TD’s, with regard to planning a future for rural Ireland. Commenting on recent radical proposals for Ireland’s development by Mr John Moran (Former Secretary-General at the Department of Finance), Deputy Lowry stated that he disagreed with many of the views expressed by Mr Moran, with regard to his future vision for rural Ireland.
Using the comparative example of Ireland versus France; Mr Moran had declared that France was “pulling back services from less efficient parts of their country and encouraging those areas to develop a different business model.”
“How can rural Ireland attract a ‘different business model’, when such areas have been totally stripped of infrastructure and investment, with little attempt at supporting regional development. To advance a ‘different business model’ would entail a modern rural road network as part of other required infrastructure. Mr Moran appears to be unaware that the National Roads Fund decreased from €608 million in 2008 to a current figure of €294 million in 2015. In 2011 Tipperary received €45 million for roads. In 2016 this had fallen to €25 million. Also in 2015 some €439 million was made available to the semi-State utility Irish Water; taken from motor tax payment and local property tax.”
Deputy Lowry continued: “The IDA must immediately begin to invest in advance industrial infrastructure in places like Co. Tipperary; providing ready-to-go turnkey facilities with access to high-speed broadband being a priority. Neglect of infrastructure and investment in turn has had a domino effect in relation to the lack of job opportunities for a highly skilled and well educated workforce. The previous government and national agencies have done little or nothing to correct this current urban / rural imbalance. Young people are being forced to leave their homes, families and communities daily. Emigration has also had a massive impact on close local communities; particularly on sports clubs, who are suffering from decimation by the forced flight of its younger membership.
Back during the emergence of our Irish State; using our then fiscal capabilities, we established one industry after another. Ensuring not to make new developments simply localized affairs; we spread new factories as wide as possible throughout the State. This was done to avoid the problems of the over-centralization of industry; becoming part of a plan to make industry conform to the general well-being of rural areas. Same industries were predominantly placed in agricultural based areas, sharing in an industrial revival, offering work to those who otherwise would have departed via an emigrant ship. During this same period our Irish economy saw the net value of industrial products increased from over €18.25 million to over €28.25 million; while wages paid to production workers increased by €4.25 million and placed eighty thousand additional workers into steady regular employment.
Year after year, small shops, post offices and Garda Stations are shrinking. Fewer homes are being constructed, resulting in no work for builders and associated trades. Fewer children are being born; school numbers and teachers are reduced leading to inevitable school closures. The shortage of priests is leading to parishes becoming clustered with grave implications for church communities.
Urban centres must not forget that our valuable agricultural exports continue to emanate from a currently neglected rural Ireland” concluded Deputy Lowry
Electrical and Battery Recycling
A reminder to all regarding the recycling of old electrical appliances via WEEE Ireland.
WEEE Ireland is a not for profit organisation, founded by the producers of electrical and electronic appliances, in order to comply with the legal obligations imposed by the WEEE Directive 2002/96/EC.
Remember WEEE material is anything with a plug normally attached and WEEE Ireland will be making collections from 10.00am until 4.00pm, on Saturday 14th of May 2016, from the following Venues:- Town Car Park, Main Square, Templemore and the Mid-Tipperary Mart Yard, Stradavoher, here in Thurles Town.
So here is your opportunity to bring along old redundant electrical appliances for recycling. Remember this is a completely FREE service, eliminating the temptation to dump illegally in our beautiful countryside.
Today April 27th 2016, Thurles Town Park was officially opened by Councillor Mr Seamus Hanafin, Cathaoirleach (English Trans. – Chairperson) of Tipperary County Council and Councillor Mr John Hogan, latter Cathaoirleach of the local Templemore-Thurles, Municipal District.
Proceedings began, in splendid sunshine, with the officially blessing of the park by His Grace Archdiocese, Kieran O’Reilly, SMA, (Archbishop of Cashel & Emly). Following the official unveiling of a plaque to mark the occasion, those in attendance then retired to the ‘The Source’ exhibition centre, to address all those in attendance.
Speaking at the event, Councillor Mr Hanafin praised the ‘tremendous foresight’ of all involved down through the years, in ensuring that this dream for Thurles truly became a reality. In particular he thanked St Patrick’s College, through college custodians His Grace, Archdiocese, Kieran O’Reilly and Fr. Tom Fogarty (St Patrick’s College President), for ensuring that the site was made available. He was also strong in his praise of Templemore/ Thurles Administrator Mr Michael Ryan and former Thurles U.D.C. Manager Mr Tom Barry, who ensured that the necessary funding was kept securely in place to support this overall planning project going forward to completion.
Click HERE for HD Quality Video
Councillor Hanafin pointed out the various modern amenities now being made available to everyone; Play and Sporting areas; Seating areas; Free Exercise facilities; New Bridge offering pedestrian only access to the town centre / Short-cut to the south of the town and not least, an area retained for natural flora/ fauna and other naturally occurring insect & wild life.
Councillor Mr John Hogan spoke of his strong past memories of the old car-park area as a schoolboy; again pointing out the huge benefits that this new amenity now afforded the people of Thurles; not just our youth but also our elderly; our parents with young children; our visitors of all ages, entering into our local community.
In attendance also Mr Joe MacGrath (C.E. Tipperary Co. Council), congratulated his staff on their professional leadership, in bringing to full fruition, this newly completed project. He also hinted that the revitalisation of Liberty Square in the town could begin as soon as the end of this year or very early in 2017, subject to agreement by all relevant stake holders.
Speaking on his Facebook tonight, Mr Michael Lowry TD, who also attended the official opening, concurred with remarks made by Councillor Hanafin, stating; “A huge debt of gratitude is due to all the businesses of Thurles; their support body Thurles Chamber; former and present Town Councillors and their officials, in making this tremendous park amenity a reality.”
‘Refresh Thurles‘ have just launched their ‘Community Estates & Streetscape Competition‘. This year 2016, will see the introduction of this particular competition for the first time and it is hoped that there will be a high rate of participation throughout the town.
Note: The closing date to enter this competition is May 31st, 2016 and for those local community areas wishing to take-part; entry is totally free.
Rules, Entry Forms, Categories & Prizes
The Community Estates & Streetscape Groupings, wishing to take part, must nominate a minimum of 3 persons to head up their individual groups, all of which should be listed on the entry form. There are four categories in the competition; Best Streetscape; Best Estate (1-30 houses); Best Estate (30 -70 Houses) and Best Estate 70+ Houses. The Prize in each case is €200.00, which is to be used to improve the winning Estate or Streetscape. Full details of the ‘Marking Scheme’ applicable can be found attached to the Application Form.
Entry forms are available from Refresh Thurles Committee Members or from the counter in Thurles Library. Alternatively text to Mobile (087) 2701689 or Email email@example.com and they will have the form sent out to you. All completed entries can be put into a provided collection box in Thurles Library or returned by post to the address provided on the entry form.
Judging & Aims
Judging will take place during the months of July and August and the winners will be announced on September 1st. The aim of this initiative is to increase community participation and to give people an opportunity to demonstrate their ‘Pride of Place’. The work done by everyone will also contribute to further improving our ‘National Tidy Town’ marks for Thurles; latter which have increased over the last three years and hopefully will continue to improve in the years ahead. [See 2015 Category E results HERE]
This Competition is timely; as North Tipperary Leader Partnership (NTLP) have begun work on the Social Inclusion and Community Activation Program and perhaps there is some way that NTLP can help you to get a Community Group together and work towards this competition.
You can also contact the Leader Office situated on Kickham Street, Thurles, Tel: (0504) 90579 or contact Breada Ryan on Mobile (087) 9280755 or Trish Purcell on Mobile (087) 6978868. The Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP) offers a lot to the Community e.g. supports in the areas of Education; Employment; Enterprise Creation and Developing Capacity; in Community Groups.
Should you wish to get involved with ‘Refresh Thurles’ please contact them on Mobile (087) 270 1689 or Email firstname.lastname@example.org – help in any way is much appreciated.
You can follow ‘Refresh Thurles’ on Facebook.