Mother of three, Katarzyna Talaska Sokun, stated children going to the nearby St Benedict’s are impeded when walking the path in the mornings and afternoon if delivery trucks are unloading at Dunnes Stores.
“This has to stop before someone gets hurt again,” wrote the mother on Ongar, Clonee & Clonsilla newsboard. “On Wednesday morning, children were forced to walk into the main road on that bend near Dunnes with another Masterlink truck parked up just around the corner and limiting visibility.
“This is a regular occurrence there, and it’s putting vulnerable children in danger, some of them are walking on their own and facing this obstacle that could potentially be life threatening. This is why I do not let my child walk to school alone, it seems the incident from a few years ago has been quickly forgotten.”
She had phoned Dunnes management at the store and the local garda station to report the danger the delivery trucks posed and was verbally abused by the driver of the Van Fleet truck.
Cllr Tania Doyle (Ind for Ongar) has stated this is an ongoing problem and a planning issue. “This is a clear example of how a residential complex should not be built -without proper planning provisions and conditions in place.
“The store requires deliveries of goods and we fully accept this. However, the goods entrance backs straight onto a car park at the back, and deliveries often come in via the front entrance and every right- thinking person knows this cannot work. Years later, here we are, the genie is out of the bottle.”
Cllr Doyle raised the issue in 2020 with FCC, noting the original planning permission, which is approaching twenty years old, did not include a condition regarding delivery times to the retail unit as part of the grant of permission.
“At that time, a Planning Inspector visited the Dunnes Stores premises in Ongar and spoke with a new manager. It is understood, based on conversation with the manager at that time, and additional dialogue with the Principal of the school an agreement was reached to managing delivery times outside of children’s collection and drop off times at the school.
“However, I believe now we are back to Square One. I have asked the local authority, Fingal, if they can engage once more with the anchor tenant (Dunnes) to devise a more long-term sustainable solution. Additionally, I have written to the Property Management Division of Dunnes.
“But this is a planning matter – strict conditions should have been laid down at the point of granting planning permission. So, it’s up to Fingal County Council to address that now before a serious accident occurs. I will have another motion submitted at the next area meeting but it must be tackled quickly.”
Neither FCC nor Dunnes Stores would comment on the matter.
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