North Kerry communities no longer able to cope with disruptions to water supply

Ongoing disruptions at two of the main water pipes servicing Moyvane and surrounding town lands has been heavily criticised by Cllr Aoife Thornton (Fine Gael).

iven that hundreds of people are left without water each time there is a burst pipe, the pledge from Irish Water to carry out repairs in September is not acceptable as work needs to commence immediately, according to Cllr Thornton.

The constant interruption in parts of Moyvane, Tarmons, Tarbert – including Murhur and Knockanure National Schools where the latter was forced to close for eight days in the past academic year – is no longer acceptable to residents.

A pipe running from the main water plant in Listowel, and a second pipe near Ahavoher Graveyard in Moyvane, is thought to be the source of the problem which is effecting daily life for communities.

Funding has been confirmed for repairs to approximately 1.5km of the line running from Listowel to Moyvane. However, September has been criticised as the scheduled start of the repair works.

“It’s just too late for this work to start in Moyvane. When you have a schools effected to the degree that Knockanure and Murhur are, it is totally unacceptable. At the very least I requested to meet with Irish Water to discuss why work can’t be done before September,” Cllr Thornton said.

She insists that given the large catchment area impacted, disruption to vital community services like meals-on-wheels, community halls, households, and agriculture is now an ongoing issue.

Cllr Thornton also raised the matter at Monday’s meeting of the Listowel MD

“This is a huge area, and we need Irish Water to do this work as soon as possible. I’ve asked Kerry County Council to arrange for me to meet Irish Water to find out how many are affected in the catchment area; it has to be in the hundreds,” she said.

“I also requested a history of bursts and leaks because it’s on that basis that communities are prioritised for funding,” Cllr Thornton added.

Terry Dunne is on the Board of Management at Murhur N.S, and has a shop in the locality. He described the situation of having no running water as ‘another kick’ to rural communities.

“Under the Constitution we’re all equal, but we’re not all equal. There would be outcry in Dublin if this happened. But because it’s rural Ireland, the people are just ignored,” he said.

Terry explained that Murhur N.S is using money from its own coffers on water tanks to conserve water. He believes this would be better spent on the educational needs of the school.

“We would rather spend it on educational tools rather than infrastructure that is the responsibility of Irish Water,” he said.

“We are failing our children in the basic entitlement of running water at their school. We have a Minister for Education who is from this constituency. Does she know that water is a basic human right?” Terry added. – News