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St. Patrick’s Day Greening Of World Heritage Sites

St. Patrick’s Day greening of World Heritage sites puts Cashel in the shade.

Ireland’s efforts to green global historic sites, such as the Sydney Opera House, the Leaning Tower of Pisa and the Pyramids of Giza for St. Patrick’s Day is in marked contrast to “lacklustre efforts to win recognition for historic sites in Tipperary and elsewhere around the country”, according to Deputy Michael McNamara.

Queen Elizabeth II visited the Rock of Cashel on the final day of her four-day 2011 state visit.

The Clare Independent T.D.’s comments come ahead of a June 30th deadline for local authorities, community organisations and State bodies to submit applications for Ireland’s Tentative List for future World Heritage nominations to UNESCO.

The Irish list was last updated in 2010 and includes Royal Sites of Ireland such as Cashel (Tipperary), Tara (Meath), Dún Ailinne (Kildare), Hill of Uisneach (Westmeath) and the Rathcroghan Complex (Roscommon). It also includes Georgian Dublin, the Burren, and groups of related Early Monastic Sites, comprising Clonmacnoise (Offaly), Glendalough (Wicklow), Inis Cealtra (Clare), Kells (Meath) and Durrow (Laois), and Western Stone Forts, including Dun Aonghusa (Aran Island, Galway), Cahercommaun in north Clare and the Kerry forts of Benagh, Caherconree and Staigue.

Deputy McNamara said, “Tourism Ireland’s Global Greening project comes about as a result of much effort and some cost to the State (€48,583 in 2019), but I accept that it results in a benefit, not limited to direct income, to our State. We have, however, neglected to progress various sites in Ireland to UNESCO world heritage status over the past decade.”

“We currently only have two sites on the UNESCO world heritage list, Skellig Michael and Newgrange,” he explained. “By comparison, Austria and Denmark have ten world heritage sites, the latter having advanced five sites to designation in the past decade.”

“In 2014, I met with UNESCO representatives and learned that there had been little or no communication from the Irish government on the matter for some time and little effort had been made to advance the Irish tentative list since it was handed over in 2010″.

“When I raised the matter with the then Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht in 2015, I was informed that Kerry County Council had informed the Department that it did not wish to be involved in progressing the potential Western Stone Forts nomination. This was also the case in Clonmacnoise, which had obvious implications both for the potential nomination of the site in its own right, as well as for its status as a crucial element of the potential group nomination of the Early Medieval Monastic Sites.”

“Since then, successive governments have failed to progress the designation of this tentative list, despite the fact that it would bring worldwide attention to our unique patrimony and to the natural and built heritage sites themselves. As well as a requirement to ensure any development is sympathetic to and protects the integrity of the sites, which may explain the reluctance of some, more cavalier local authorities, designation also typically results in an increase in tourism, with associated economic benefits”.

In response to a recent parliamentary question, Deputy McNamara was informed that a new tentative list is being developed by the National Monuments Service, with a June 30th deadline for applications from local authorities, State bodies, community organisations and individuals, for sites or properties of natural and/or cultural heritage to be included.

He continued, “Given the increase in tourism typically generated by World Heritage site designation, and the unprecedented challenges that will face the domestic and international tourism sector when we open up to world again, every effort must be made to advance built and natural heritage sites across Ireland to the World Heritage list.”

“Unless the government prioritises the list that will be developed and puts the same effort into obtaining world heritage status for our own sites as it puts into “greening” other states’ world heritage sites, I fear the list will be as useless an exercise in bureaucracy as its predecessor. Our annual celebration of international World Heritage sites being lit up in green must be matched by a similar enthusiasm for securing similar designation for our own world class heritage sites,” concluded Deputy McNamara.

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TII – No Proper Road Repairs Imminent On Kickham Street

Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) jokingly claim “Our mission is to provide high quality transport infrastructure and services, delivering a better quality of life and supporting economic growth”.

Following representations to Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII), they have confirmed today that necessary roadworks required to be carried out from the Mill Road Roundabout, through Kickham Street (The Pike) travelling west only as far as the Cathedral Street Roundabout; these same badly required roadworks will not be carried out within the next few months, despite the appalling and dangerous conditions being tolerated, not just by local residents, but pedestrians travelling on the areas footpaths.

The excuse of course is Covid-19 virus restrictions and the works currently being currently carried out on a now terminally ill Liberty Square; latter forced to give up the ghost with the introduction of Tipperary Council’s implemented car parking charges.

It would appear that TII employees are more susceptible to catching Covid-19 virus, than those employees currently working on upgrading Liberty Square and those other road workers currently employed on the Slievenamon Road /new LIDL Supermarket site.

The narrow roadway through Kickham Street, Thurles is by far the busiest entry road into Thurles town. It is not just the traffic accessing the area from the M8 motorway, but also north bound heavy vehicles now travelling from the south-east, who use the Mill Road. Latter are anxious to avoid the long waiting times caused by road workers operating Stop/Go signals at the junction of Clongour Road and Slievenamon Road. By next March we forecast latter area will become the new town centre for Thurles business, due to the more than adequate free parking arrangements

Meanwhile, residents on Kickham Street who pay Local Property Tax (averaging €197.60 per house, per annum, for absolutely no benefit), must tolerate the gravel, the muck and the dirty water striking their ground floor windows and house fronts; pouring through door seals and letter boxes; as local councillors, council engineers and politicians totally ignore the situation.

As can be seen in the video above; traffic movement on the street, spends more time driving on footpaths then they do on the actual road surface, due to a lack of road space.

God help home owners who may require to turn off their water supply in the future, with water metres stupidly and crudely installed on the edges of footpaths, latter which are now being constantly driven over by persistent traffic of all description’s, from 18 wheelers to bicycles.

Interior walls of some Kickham Street houses fronting on the street, are now showing sign of rising damp. This is due to the outside footpaths not being properly sealed, when solid concrete paths were unnecessarily and foolishly replaced with cement slabs in recent years; further wasting tax payers and ultimately Tipperary Co. Council collected taxes.

In the meanwhile, a JCB will be hired, its front shovel full of cold tarmac and a mechanical ‘Tarmac Tamper’ / ‘Rammer’. Two or three men will fill the holes with shovels and tamp down the cold tarmac with the ‘Rammer’. Four hours later same will be loosened by traffic, turning it into gravel, which in turn will further loosen more of the solid road surface. These repairs will continue to be undertaken 3 days a week for at least the next 14 weeks, before any real remedial action is taken.

Some idiotic Councillors in shirking their elected responsibilities; claim that Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) are responsible and not Tipperary County Council. If this is the case, then why is Tipperary County Council carrying out patch repairs?

Seen as a waste of time, proud local residents have now stopped cleaning the area in the front of their homes.

The waste of tax payers’ financial resources, by Tipperary Co. Council, continues unabated; encouraged by the silence of the Thurles community.

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Driving Licence Exemption For Over 70’s During Covid-19.

Ms Hildegarde Naughton TD

The Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Ms Hildegarde Naughton, (FG Teachta Dála for the Galway West constituency since 2016), has announced an extension in the exemption that allows for those aged over 70 years old, to apply for a driving licence, without the need to provide a medical report.

Her decision comes following the current surge of Covid-19 cases and in order to ease the burden on Irish medical services.

This decision means that persons of 70 years of age, or over, can apply for to renew their current driving licence without the need to submit a medical report. Same is based on the condition that they do not have an identified or specified illness and are not applying for a licence to drive a truck or a passenger carrier, e.g. a bus or similar category.

This measure will now eliminate the need for drivers over the age of 70 years from having to make an unnecessary journey to their local GP or congregate at their National Driver Licence Service centre.

Those over 70 years old, can view the 4b category on their current driving licence, to check the licence expiry date.

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HSE, Gardaí & Tipp. Co. Co Make Special Appeal

According to the HSE, the Gárdaí and the Local Authority, positive action and changes to behaviour remain essential to ensuring that hospital and community healthcare services locally are enabled to deal with demands, that the optimum levels of living safely alongside the threat of the virus are sustained and that Co. Tipperary stays at Level 2 of the public restrictions in place in Ireland.

The Chair of the South East Regional Steering Group for Major Emergency Management (comprising the three principal response agencies: An Garda Siochana, the HSE and the Local Authorities) and Chief Officer of HSE/South East Community Healthcare Kate Killeen White, joined by Specialist in Public Health Medicine and Director of the HSE’s South East Public Health Dept. Dr Carmel Mullaney and the General Manager of South Tipperary General Hospital Maria Barry are reminding the public to:

  • Wash your hands well and often
  • Cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing
  • Limit contact with others and maintain physical distancing.
  • Wear a face mask or covering where appropriate.

When such actions are taken, the HSE says, doing so not only prevents the transmission of the virus, but also protects older and vulnerable people and healthcare workers.

The Chair of Tipperary County Council Cllr. Michael Smith and the Chief Executive Joe McGrath are also urging people not to allow everyone’s hard work to date in 2020 to be undermined and are re-iterating that individual actions do matter and that if those in Co. Tipperary live by the advice being given, that schools can be kept open and other points reached on Ireland’s roadmap to recovery be maintained.

The Gárda Chief Superintendent in Tipperary Derek Smart points to what has been evident to date in 2020: the country moving from a short-term emergency response approach to a medium-term one, to manage risk and repair the damage that COVID-19 has inflicted on society. Chief Superintendent Smart concludes the joint message by reminding everyone that we are at a critical point in tackling the spread of COVID-19 and people in Tipperary must take personal responsibility to avoid situations that are a risk to themselves, their family and their friends.

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Delays Expected On Templemore – Thurles Road – Oct. 5th – Nov. 27th

Temporary Traffic Management N62 Templemore Thurles Road 07:00hrs to 18:00hrs, Monday to Friday, for the duration of works, 5th October to the 27th November.

Temporary Traffic Management N62 Templemore Thurles Road 07:00hrs to 18:00hrs , Monday to Friday, for the duration of the works 5th October to the 27th November.

Pavement Improvement Scheme.
The project commences at the junction of the Borrisoleigh Road (R501) and the N62 (Thurles Road) extending approximately 2km to the South (toward Thurles town).

Commuters Take Note;
Temporary Traffic Management will be in place, and while the N62 will be open to traffic, some delays can be expected.

Minor diversions (of side road traffic) will be in place.

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