Coastal dwellers in Portrane left to count storm’s cost

by Sylvia Pownall

Residents of The Burrow in Portrane are counting the cost of yet another storm as properties inch perilously close to being washed away by the sea.

Local Labour representative Corina Johnston has hit out at the delay in tackling coastal erosion – calling on the council and the OPW to take urgent action.

Fingal County Council is drawing up plans for a long-term solution to the issue, but Labour TD Brendan Ryan was told this will not be ready before mid-2020 at the earliest.

Ms Johnston said: “Over the years there has been enough consultants’ reports produced to wallpaper every house in The Burrow, while at the same time its properties are being washed away.

“This delay is totally unacceptable, and the residents deserve much better. If it wasn’t for Brendan Ryan’s ongoing representations with Minister Boxer Moran, the initial funding may not have been allocated.”

Last year, a house at The Burrow which was deemed unsafe was demolished, and at least two others are now teetering on the brink of being washed away.

In reply to a Parliamentary Question, Deputy Ryan was told that consultants are assessing options for a permanent solution.

However, the process will be a lengthy one, because the council must carry out a public consultation, environmental assessment and consent process – and then must apply for funding from the OPW “if a viable option is identified”.

Elsewhere, Storm Brendan made its presence known in Skerries where flooding caused the closure of part of the Coast Road and the re-routing of the 33 bus to Balbriggan.

The Irish Coast Guard also hit out at reckless behaviour of those who gathered around the harbour and seafront in Howth despite warnings to avoid the area.

Fingal County Council issued a flood risk on Monday for Sutton, Baldoyle, Portmarnock, Malahide, Portrane, Rush, Skerries and Balbriggan.

A spokesperson for the local authority told Dublin Gazette: “Sandbags were made available to the public in Watery Lane, Swords and Fancourt, Balbriggan depots.

“Flooding caused damage to Holmpatrick Road, Skerries at the rugby club and our teams assessed the damage and closed the road, with a diversion in place via Shenick Road and Golf Links Road.

“A meeting took place on Tuesday morning to plan for remedial works at the site.”

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