Kiltartan Church at risk at flooding again

Kiltartan Church at risk at flooding again

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A church near Gort is facing the risk of flooding yet again as waters continue to rise across hundreds of acres of land over a wide area.

St Attracta’s Church in Kiltartan was first flooded in 1995 and again in 2015 and is currently surrounded by flood waters. While water has not entered the building, any rise in flood levels will surely result in the church being flooded again.

Locals hope that that water will remain at bay and not rise any higher however, they are concerned that their local chapel will suffer damage again and that the flooding will be worse this time.

Photo: © Pat Flynn 2020

Hundreds of acres of farmland have also been flooded with dozens of roads being left under water and homes cut off. As many as nine roads in the Gort area along have been closed with water reported to be up to 8 feet deep in places.

Meanwhile, a section of the rail line between Gort and Athenry remains under water with train services being cancelled. A bus transfer service will operate until further notice.

Photo: © Pat Flynn 2020

Iarnród Éireann is also monitoring the rail line at Ballycar near Newmarket on Fergus which is also at risk of flooding. The line has been closed several times in recent years with no sign of the issue being resolved despite commitments from the government and ministerial visits.

The Office of Public Works (OPW) also repeatedly denied the flooding was its responsibility while Iarnród Éireann previously claimed “the OPW have the legal authority and expertise to undertake the necessary works.”

Clare County Council carried out works to raise a local road which repeatedly flooded to depths over up to six feet leaving local homes cut off.

Water levels continue rise on Ballycar Lough putting the Ennis to Limerick rail service at risk – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2020
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Chief Reporter Pat Flynn has worked as a journalist for almost 30 years. His career began during the late 1980s when, like many aspiring radio presenters of the time, he worked for local pirate radio stations in Clare and Limerick. Pat joined Clare FM in 1990 where he worked as researcher initially and later presented several different programmes including the station's flagship current affairs programme. He was also the station's News Editor and Deputy Controller of Programmes. Despite leaving in 2003 to pursue a career as a freelance journalist, he continues to work with the station to this day. As well as being the Clare Herald’s Chief Reporter Pat is also freelance journalist and broadcaster, contributing to Ireland’s national newspapers and is a regular contributor to national broadcasters.

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