GAA club caught between rock and hard place

September 27, 2012
Glanmire football club in Cork has been instructed to stop construction of a rock embankment amid fears that it could put nearby home and commercial premises at increased risk of flooding.

Cork County Council has claimed no planning permission was obtained for the project which has seen the club install a boulder wall and felled a number of trees on the banks of the Glashaboy River in a bid to prevent further flood debris damaging its pitches.

However, a spokesman for the club told The Irish Examiner that the 2ft-high wall is merely replacing a riverbank that collapsed in last June's flooding.

"This is just routine maintenance. It is not a new development. This rock bank will not prevent water from coming into the pitch, it will, however, stop the type of debris that has ruined our pitches. Our children have had nowhere to train since last June. The pitch is covered in debris including grass and will have to be removed and replaced in its entirety," he said.

But Cork county engineer Noel O'Keeffe said the wall could redirect water upstream and downstream.

"To just start building an embankment could have a nefarious effect on lands belonging to businesses and residences. The catchment area around the Glashaboy River is complex. It's wooded in parts, it's steep, and there are some bridges that are protected structures. We need to do the science on the area before we consider any anti-flooding works," he said.

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