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Sligo County Council and Lissadell Gets Interesting….

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I had written a post under the title Sligo County Council Close Lissadell House
read it and come back if you wish……

And I have just received this email…. Sligo County Council ** Lissadell House is a client of Michaels by the way.

Mr. Donegan,
please try and get some of your facts right concerning the situation at Lissadell.

Your website dramatically announces ‘Sligo County Council close Lissadell House’.

Untrue. The Council agreed to amend the county development plan to include ‘provision’ for the “preservation of rights of way”.

This action did not change any law, but merely gave rise to due process where all interested parties could have a say.

At that point the current owners closed Lissadell House, and initiated high court proceedings _agains_t Sligo County Council.

I direct you to current reportage in yesterdays and todays Irish Times;

that is if you want facts, as opposed to the somewhat hysterical and rather creepy approach from your odd website.

I ask you to correct your website’s headline to: ‘Lissadell owners close their own holiday home despite Councils calls for mediation and compromise’.

from Michael Wann

* I have not replied to this email by the way.

UPDATE 21st january ’10

**Michael has been in touch again… and hence the ammendment to the the above notation. It is in fact noted on his website michaelwann[dot]com that in fact his art is in Sligo and Lissadell House rather than with Sligo County Council.

UPDATE 23nd January 2010

Michael I know you will be reading this….. please stop emailing me. 

Sligo County Council Close Lissadell House

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I remember hearing about this last year in one of the trade magazines and going straight past the headline…. mainly because I thought to myself

No County Council would be stupid enough to do so….

I was extremely wrong. A major catastrophe has developed and thanks to an extremely well written piece by Rosita Boland on the Lissadell situation it has hit the headlines Ireland and in this weekends Irish Times. Well worth reading.

Let me give you the gist of the story…..

Sligo County Council could have bought this house in 2003 but chose not to. Instead the Gore family bought it for €3.75 million according to their statement  as a private property‘ [then spent €800,000 on contents]. The house at the time was almost derelict. This obviously doesn’t include maintenance and a lot of staff and to date €12 million has been invested in the estate. Lissadell house has also not received any public funding.

Second…. I’ve been to Sligo. It is very beautiful… but there isn’t a lot by way of tourist attractions and in 2008 Lissadell attracted 44,000 visitors.

Here’s where it gets a little odd….

On 1st December 2008 Sligo County Council, without any notice to us, passed a resolution that the Council “amend the current County Development Plan to include in it a provision for the preservation of the public rights of way along routes through the Lissadell Estate” in accordance with section 14 of the Planning and Development Act 2000. These routes include the path running right in front of the doors of the House itself.

Their statement continues…..

For a public right of way to exist, it must be expressly dedicated by the owner of the land. That is the law. There is no evidence that any such dedication was ever made over any part of the Lissadell Estate, either when it was a 4,000 acre estate, or when it was reduced to the current 400 acres in the 1960s. Indeed it would defy common sense to dedicate as a public road an internal path right beside the front door of your house.

Whats funny now is that on Tuesday the family must defend themselves in court against Sligo County Council. Can you imagine if this were to happen to you…..? This is  ridiculous. And Sligo County Council should be ashamed of themselves.  According to Rosita Bolands article it was difficult to find anyone to speak on the record or in support of the councils actions. This includes Joe Leonard who was the brains behind this issue…..

My suggestion….. send Joe an email or give a call and let him know how you feel.

Councillor Joe Leonard

Drumcliffe Elected Member
Party: Fine Gael
Elected: 1985
Address: Cloonaghbawn Ballinfull Co Sligo
Phone: 071 9163443
Mobile:
Email: leonardjoe@eircom.net

In closing Constance Cassidy and her husband Eamon Walsh note

OUR VISION was to transform the estate into a flagship for tourism in Sligo and the North West, and to provide a secure environment for our seven children……

………..We have avoided the easy options to exploit and develop Lissadell commercially, but there is only so much one family can do. If we do not enjoy the support of the councillors who represent the people of Sligo then our efforts are at naught. Why would anyone continue?

Edward Walsh, Constance Cassidy and family.

UPDATE: As usual, I have emailed both Joe Leonard and Lisadell House to let them know of this piece. As yet Joe Leonard has not responded

Oh by the way this is the same Joe Leonard with *the famous poster 😉

UPDATE:

see post: Lissadell House gets interesting

UPDATE: The Sodshow speaks with Keith McNair

Malahide Demesne

The first Sunday of March I went to Malahide Castle [also called park or demesne]. I like the park. I’ve been here before. But it’s been a while.

As an open space – I love it. But the park holds much more than green fields.

On the one hand I wouldn’t mind if there were some exemplary bedding displays. But also the model railway museum was closed and the Talbot Botanic gardens of the park were closed. I understand why the park would close them from a horticultural point of view – but I want to see ‘a specific plant’ at its worst [overwintering state] and at it’s finest. I want to see it as it progresses through the seasons. Thats what I’d like. A little one to many paddlocks and closed gates – with notice of opening times by the month…. ,

However, it does have an amazing playgorund. It is in the overall context very well maintained. The coffee shop is great. It’s got the little craft stores contained within. Outside of that, the backdrop of the castle is glorious. The grounds are in itself well layed out and it is constantly busy. No matter what I say – I still spent a good 3 hours there and loved roaming the ‘lesser’ routes with ‘herself’.

waste money, not water…?

water conservation?

water conservation?

Like all, almost all, some semi state employees when its not your money, why should you care? Benchmarking? hmmm….

Here’s a top tip: sell umberellas and wellingtons in the rainy season and sunscreen and sunglasses in the sunny season or in this case promote ‘your’ waterbutts when its raining and water conservation when its not.

Butt [?!] what do I know. I’m just being logic.

This courtesy of Conor Popes Blog. Well done mate, again.

I’ve just heard what might the most pointless ad ever broadcast on Irish radio. It was from the water conservation people and urged listeners not to use hoses to water their grass. Sorry, what? Did someone really think it was absolutely necessary to spend money – our money – on cautioning people against watering their grass with a hose? Just when are we supposd to be out watering the grass? In between sandbagging our houses keep the torrential rains out? Pity they haven’t heard of money conservation.

rain water harvesting butts

peter donegan - rain water harvesting buttsI always reuse the grey water from my house & throw it over the veggie plot. Butt [!] it’s time to go a stage further. I wanted a water butt. It took a little research and I go two from… fingal county council.

Made from recycled plastic, Dublin City Council [their page is a little more informative] are selling them too. I dont know about the rest of the country. Sorry!

How much? I paid €40 by bin tags [which is tax deductable] and collected myself. Thats really good value by the way. I thought they’d be sold out – but – the guy in Swords Estuary Recycling Centre said the uptake hadn’t been so great. That’s a bit of a shame and a little surprising. Maybe water charges should come in after all?

HOW TO FIT YOUR HARVESTER[what the instructions don’t tell you]

Anyhow – the fitting is a little tricky. Partly, because my instructions were wet! remember – take your time – measure twice & cut once

peter donegan - rain water butt install 1] place the butt where you want it near the down pipe from your gutters. Hold the pipe in place [as it will sit]; mark where you will cut; make sure it reaches. Cut the down pipe with a hand saw and again removing about 1cm of pipe. You may need a little more – but a good ‘wallop’ [careful and easy! measure twice – cut once!!] should knock it back into place. The section supplied should now be in place & the black hose should now protrude.

rain water harvesting - peter donegan landscaping 2] With the butt sitting on its stand, you now need to drill into the side of the butt – again careful measure twice and cut once – to fit the connection so as the pipe from the downpipe will connect to the harvester and don’t forget gravity!

water butts - peter donegan landscaping ltd3] you’ll need a decent screwdriver to knock the lid into place

That is pretty much it! Careful when cutting – or you’ll take most of the paint off the walls [and your fingers too…!] and make sure and leave the tap in the off position… I don’t need to explain that one…. ? All one needs to do now is wait for it to rain.

We really should allow fixtures like this more readily into our garden designs…