Minister visits Clare flood relief schemes

Minister visits Clare flood relief schemes


Significant works have already been carried out at Lahinch

Minister of State for the Office of Public Works, Mr. Patrick O’Donovan TD, today visited County Clare to view progress on the flood relief schemes being progressed by Clare County Council and the OPW.

Speaking at Miltown Malbay this morning, Minister O’Donovan stated “Clare County Council, in collaboration with my Office, has made significant progress in the roll-out of flood relief schemes in the County – both large OPW-led schemes and small localised projects, and it is heartening to see what has been happening on the ground here today”.

Construction of flood relief works at Ennis South commenced in April 2019, with the works consisting primarily of embankments and two new culverts at St. Flannans and Ballybeg. Due to unforeseen ground conditions in the Clareabbey area along the River Fergus, significant re-design of the original scheme was undertaken during the course of construction. This redesign included piling necessary to address instability of existing embankments. The OPW provided additional funding and resources necessary to ensure completion of the scheme and protection of the relevant properties. Work in this area is progressing well and is on target to be completed within the original contract period, ending in June 2021.

At Springfield, the Minister was delighted to see another scheme added to the substantial number of projects underway in County Clare with the An Bord Pleanala approval for the OPW funded scheme in Springfield, Clonlara. The scheme will involve the construction of a flood protection embankment, land raising, penstock / sluice systems, a pump station and associated works at the townland and surrounding areas of Springfield/Clonlara Co Clare.

Members of the Hogan family who were evacuated from his home at Springfield in December 2015 – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015

Minister O’Donovan added “The project here at Springfield will provide much needed protection to 18 residential properties and reassurance to the community of Springfield.”

The Minister went on to say “Clare County Council also works in close collaboration with my Office on the Minor Flood Mitigation Works & Coastal Protection Scheme with projects approved and funded recently by my Office at Spanish Point, Miltown Malbay and Thomond Villas in Clarecastle. This, together with the major funding provided to the Council after the devastating coastal storms of 2014 has also enabled the major works at Lahinch – which was a strong visual reminder of the power of nature at the time.”

Minister O’Donovan concluded “The range, scale and complexity of the projects being carried out in Clare demonstrate the commitment of the Government to the whole area of flood relief and the strong inter-agency relationship between the OPW and Clare County Council.”

Defence Forces personnel filling sandbags in Springfield, Clonlara in 2015 – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015