Tourists take risks to get photos of cathe­dral

Irish Examiner - County - - Front Page - Sean O’Rior­dan

Tourists, anx­ious to snap one of Co Cork’s most iconic build­ings, are lit­er­ally putting them­selves on a po­ten­tially slip­pery slope.

Some, it emerged, are risk­ing life and limb to se­cure great im­ages of Cobh’s St Col­man’s Cathe­dral.

And county coun­cil­lors liv­ing in the famed har­bour town are con­cerned about the risks be­ing taken.

It emerged the best im­ages of the Dio­cese of Cloyne’s cathe­dral church are ex­actly from a slop­ing bank on the west side.

Labour coun­cil­lor Cathal Ras­mussen raised the is­sue at last week’s De­cem­ber meet­ing of the Cobh-Glan­mire Mu­nic­i­pal District Coun­cil. He re­quested that county coun­cil engi­neers would con­sider the in­stal­la­tion of a view­ing plat­form on the right-hand side of the bank, in a park at West View.

Mr Ras­mussen said the area pro­vides stun­ning shots of the cathe­dral and many tourists had be­come aware of the lo­ca­tion.

He had been ap­proached by a number of lo­cals liv­ing in the area who were con­cerned about the risks some tourists were tak­ing to get the per­fect shot. “Some of them are climb­ing up of a slopey bank which is highly dan­ger­ous,” said Mr Ras­mussen.

To com­pound mat­ters, he noted: “There’s ac­tu­ally Ja­panese knotweed at the site as well which they’re dis­turb­ing.”

In sup­port, In­de­pen­dent coun­cil­lor Kieran McCarthy, who also lives in Cobh and pro­vides vis­i­tor tours of the town’s War of In­de­pen­dence history, said a view­ing gallery would be an ex­cel­lent idea. “I take tourists up around that gen­eral area very reg­u­larly,” he said. “There should also be an in­for­ma­tion board erected there.”

Coun­cil engi­neers said they would ex­am­ine the coun­cil­lors’ re­quests and would con­sult the county ar­chi­tect’s of­fice about a de­sign for an in­for­ma­tion board.

Mean­while, on the is­sue of Ja­panese knotweed in Cobh, Mr Ras­mussen asked that a town-wide sur­vey be car­ried out pin­point­ing lo­ca­tions where the in­va­sive plant had taken hold. “There seems to be more of it grow­ing around the place than ever be­fore.”

Fianna Fáil coun­cil­lor Padraig O’Sul­li­van in­quired about an erad­i­ca­tion pro­gramme but of­fi­cials said while the coun­cil treats the spread of the plant in pub­lic ar­eas, it had a lim­ited bud­get.

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