Guide­lines ‘would be the end of ru­ral liv­ing’

Wicklow People (Arklow) - - FRONT PAGE -

PEO­PLE liv­ing in ru­ral ar­eas in Ark­low will be forced out of their homes if new plan­ning guide­lines get the green light, ac­cord­ing to a lo­cal coun­cil­lor.

Cllr Pat Kennedy said the draft Na­tional Plan­ning Frame­work will be the death knell not only for the Ark­low district but ru­ral Wicklow.

‘If these guide­lines are adopted it will rule out plan­ning in ru­ral Wicklow. At the mo­ment if you want to live in the ru­ral area you have to demon­strate a so­cial or eco­nomic need but un­der the new frame­work these will be re­duced to prov­ing an eco­nomic need only.

‘Ru­ral peo­ple will have to stand up and be counted in re­la­tion to this. It is go­ing to turn ru­ral Ire­land into a hol­i­day home des­ti­na­tion. Ru­ral peo­ple won’t be able to af­ford hous­ing in ru­ral towns and vil­lages.’

PEO­PLE liv­ing in ru­ral ar­eas in Wicklow will be forced out of their homes if new plan­ning guide­lines get the green light.

Cllr Pat Kennedy said the draft Na­tional Plan­ning Frame­work will be the death knell for ru­ral Wicklow if it is im­ple­mented.

‘If these guide­lines are adopted it will rule out plan­ning in ru­ral Wicklow. As a coun­cil­lor work­ing with peo­ple try­ing to se­cure plan­ning per­mis­sion I’m aware how dif­fi­cult it is to get plan­ning in Wicklow. At the minute it’s very dif­fi­cult but if these guide­lines are adopted it will be im­pos­si­ble.

‘At the mo­ment if you want to live in the ru­ral area you have to demon­strate a so­cial or eco­nomic need but un­der the new frame­work these will be re­duced to prov­ing an eco­nomic need only.

‘So if you have a farmer with three chil­dren and he hands the farm over to one child the other two don’t have a right to live there be­cause they won’t have an eco­nomic need.

‘Cur­rently there is no sew­er­age ca­pac­ity in An­nacur­ragh and Aughrim and Rath­drum will reach ca­pac­ity in the next five to seven years so peo­ple can’t move into town.

‘This whole plan is ill thought out. Ru­ral peo­ple will have to stand up and be counted in re­la­tion to this. It is go­ing to turn ru­ral Ire­land into a hol­i­day home des­ti­na­tion. Ru­ral peo­ple won’t be able to af­ford hous­ing in ru­ral towns and vil­lages. They will be snapped up by peo­ple from Dublin.

‘I think this pro­posed frame­work is one of the most se­ri­ous doc­u­ments since the Foun­da­tion of the State. Peo­ple have to put pres­sure on their lo­cal rep­re­sen­ta­tives and their lo­cal TD’s in par­tic­u­lar who will be ad­dress­ing this at na­tional level.

‘I think ru­ral peo­ple will have to take to the streets over this. It can­not be im­ple­mented un­der any cir­cum­stances. I don’t think it is ac­cept­able. Ru­ral peo­ple have a right to live in the area they are from and to rear their fam­ily there.

‘I think there has been ab­so­lutely no con­sul­ta­tion with the peo­ple on the ground.’

Cllr Kennedy said he had been con­tacted by sev­eral peo­ple liv­ing in ru­ral ar­eas who are very con­cerned about the im­pli­ca­tions of this frame­work. This will be the death knell for ru­ral fam­i­lies. Lo­cal schools, GAA clubs and busi­nesses will close if this goes ahead in its cur­rent form.’

Cllr Pat Kennedy.

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