SOUTH WICK­LOW IS WIPED OFF THE MAP Three garda cars dam­aged in chase

LO­CALS ‘SHOCKED AND AP­PALLED’ AS SOUTH CUT OFF OF TOURISM MAP

Wicklow People - - NEWS - By SARA GA­HAN

A Failte Ire­land road map hit a ma­jor bump in the road after it was found to cut off the south of the county.

The map, which was is­sued last year and is avail­able from tourist of­fices around the county, does not in­clude large tracts of the south and south-west, and has led to fears about the im­pact it will have on tourism in Ark­low, Carnew, Coolkenna, Ti­na­hely, Shil­le­lagh and sur­round­ing vil­lages.

Man­ager of Ti­na­hely Court­house Arts Cen­tre Mag­gie Gal­lagher said the cen­tre al­ready strug­gles to get its name out there and in­ci­dents like this do not help their case.

‘It is shock­ing and ap­palling that some­one would just go and cut out the south of Wick­low. It is some­thing the arts cen­tre does not need,’ said Ms Gal­lagher.

Gerry O’Brien, who or­gan­ises dances reg­u­larly in Parkview House in Shil­le­lagh, was also not im­pressed by it.

‘This will def­i­nitely have an ef­fect on our tourism trade. I know peo­ple use Google Maps, but there is a few who still use road maps. How will they know where Shil­le­lagh is? We are try­ing our best to turn our dances into one of the top places for a great night out,’ he said.

Cathaoir­leach of Ark­low Mu­nic­i­pal District Cllr Tommy An­nes­ley said the sit­u­a­tion was ‘not ac­cept­able’.

‘I do not want to give a neg­a­tive re­sponse with some­thing to do with Wick­low tourism, but how could any­one make a mis­take like that? These peo­ple are be­ing paid to do a job and it should be done right,’ said Cllr An­nes­ley.

The Wick­low road map has not gone un­no­ticed in the lo­cal area and Cllr Pat Fitzger­ald has re­ceived a few com­plaints from peo­ple in Ark­low and be­yond.

‘It is a to­tal lack of re­spect to the south of Wick­low,’ said Cllr Fitzger­ald. ‘A few peo­ple have come up to me to say how dis­gusted they are by it. It is a huge er­ror and it needs to be fixed, be­cause south Wick­low is alive and well.’

Fred­eric Verdier from Wick­low County Tourism was keen to em­pha­sise that the pub­li­ca­tion had noth­ing to do with the Gar­den County group.

‘It is re­gret­table and a dread­ful mis­take,’ said Mr Verdier. ‘In the fu­ture we wel­come Failte Ire­land, and who­ever else, to get in touch with us be­fore they pub­lish any­thing like this again.’

A spokesper­son from Fáilte Ire­land said the road maps in par­tic­u­lar are not de­signed to be used as county maps, but rather to map out the at­trac­tions and ex­pe­ri­ences avail­able in the lo­cal­ity sur­round­ing the Wick­low tourist of­fice. They said a re­view of all lo­cal maps is planned to take place in the com­ing months.

On a broader note, Fáilte Ire­land did wish to point out that tourism in county Wick­low is do­ing very well at the mo­ment. A MAN led gar­daí on a high­speed pur­suit start­ing off near Ash­ford and end­ing in New­cas­tle, which re­sulted in the dam­age of three squad cars.

On Satur­day last, a white Honda failed to stop as it ap­proached a garda check­point at junc­tion 14 on the M11. In­stead, the ve­hi­cle left the mo­tor­way and went around a round­about on the wrong side of the road be­fore col­lid­ing with a Garda pa­trol car, caus­ing a mi­nor amount of dam­age.

The mo­torist then sped off in the di­rec­tion of Kil­loughter, with gar­dai in pur­suit.

The driver fi­nally lost con­trol of the ve­hi­cle and crashed in New­cas­tle, dam­ag­ing two garda cars, one se­ri­ously.

No one was in­jured and a man was later ar­rested and ques­tioned by Gar­dai. SWWAG will host a pub­lic meet­ing at Law­less’s Ho­tel in Aughrim at 8 p.m. this Friday, Oc­to­ber 13, to dis­cuss the latest de­vel­op­ments with pro­posed lo­cal wind farms. Doors will open be­fore 7.30 p.m.

The Failte Ire­land map which cuts Co Wick­low off just north of Ark­low.

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