Kilcock News Roundup – 20th March 2010

(Many thanks to the Liffey Champion, Leinster Leader and their reporters for providing us with these local stories)

No decision has been taken on Kilcock Courthouse’s future

(page 2, Liffey Champion)

No decision has been taken on whether to retain or close Kilcock Courthouse, according to the Courts Service of Ireland. With the court’s future at the centre of plenty of speculation in recent years, a courts service spokesman confirmed that the findings of a nation-wide review of the courts service were presented to the courts service board last week. However; the spokesman denied that any decision had yet been taken with regard to the closure of any courthouse, including Kilcock. He added that the “specifics” of the review’s findings would be looked at in consultation with local practitioners before any final decisions are taken.

Kilcock town centre site plans receive approval

By Peter Kelly

A prime town centre site in Kilcock is in line for redevelopment after An Bord Pleanála upheld Kildare County Council’s decision to grant planning permission, against the advice of its own Inspector.

After an eight-month appeal process, the Maynooth-based Ballinlonty Ltd. has been given the go ahead to proceed with its plans to restore the listed Corscadden’s Hotel as part of a new mixed use development; which is to include 73 apartments in two, three and four storey blocks. Despite concerns from its inspector; Angel Brereton,  that the proposed development as a whole would lead to crammed overdevelopment of the site, An Bord Pleanála said it was satisfied with the proposal.

The board ruled the proposed development did not constitute overdevelopment. Kildare County Council’s decision to grant planning permission last June was appealed by Kilcock and District Community Council, which argued the height of the proposed development, was more in keeping with a city centre location rather than a moderate growth town.

However; the board said the plans would not adversely affect properties in the vicinity nor would it impact on the setting or character of the listed hotel.

Further delays for Kilcock as sewage works runs into difficulty

By Conor McHugh (Leinster Leader online, published 18th March 2010)

Roads disruption in Kilcock looks set to continue for at least another two months. The Leinster Leader has learned that tunnelling work to install sewage pipes has run into difficulty, and the contractor will need to close streets in the town to allow for open-cut trenches.

It is understood that the tunnels being dug by the contractor were not stable. The contractor left the site earlier this week and has now begun the process of getting a permit to close the streets, which takes between three to four weeks. And they’ve said it will take another four weeks after that again to complete the work

A notice was issued to residents of the town last week stating that the ongoing works in Church Street “will be substantially complete by the 16th of March,” which was yesterday, Tuesday. However, the notice explained that “due to unforeseen circumstances the contractor will demobilise from the Square/New Lane area prior to March 15. “The contractor will remobilise to complete the works in the Square/New Lane area in the middle of April, and it is anticipated that these works will be completed within four weeks.”

In the notice, Kildare County Council said they “regret any inconvenience caused by these works and confirm that every effort is being made to minimise the impact of these works on members of the public”. The delay means that the much anticipated re-surfacing of the streets in the town is also delayed, which has frustrated locals for the past six months.

Tara Lane of Kilcock Business Association explained that their members “are under extreme pressure as it is. “We are very concerned about the situation that has arisen. SME businesses need all the help and support possible from local authorities and to expect the businesses to cope with this added difficulty in the current climate is unreasonable.”

And a Facebook group, called ‘Repair Kilcock’s Roads Now’ has been established, and has attracted 406 fans. It features dozens of pictures of potholes and broken road surfaces thoughout the town, as well as stories from locals of punctures, broken wheel rims and damaged cars. The site has also published contact details for all of the local County Councillors and urges people to contact them.

Cllr. Padraig McEvoy told the Leinster Leader that the “further delays to completing the sewerage installation and road repairs are a frustration for all involved – particularly the public.”I hope that the open trench work that will get under way in April will conclude on target. “We need the roads repaired to a long-lasting and safe condition for people to access Kilcock.”

And Cllr. Liam Doyle said he hoped “the work will be done as quickly as possible so that the businesses in the town don’t have to cope with what they’ve had to cope with over the past six months – which is the town being dug up. “People in businesses and schools in the area have had to overcome all the obstacles a major job like this poses. “He said that the sooner the job can be completed the better for everybody all round.”

It seems the only good news on the horizon is that the machinery was removed from the streets of the town in time for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

I hope you all had a lovely St. Patrick’s Day and enjoyed out local parade and Duck Race! Congratulations to all the winners on the day!

Therese Brady is a local aspiring writer and writes mainly about food, fiction – novels and short stories, restaurant, movie and book reviews and I have my own website www.theresebrady.com and blog called Writer’s Cramp. This is where I keep my creative juices flowing during those down moments of writer’s block. I’ve completed one novel and am currently working on the second. Find me on Facebook and Twitter.

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