COURT

Travellers ordered to leave unofficial Tipperary halting site by next Tuesday

Aodhan O'Faolain

Reporter:

Aodhan O'Faolain

Email:

news@nationalist.ie

Travellers ordered leave unofficial Tipperary halting site by next Tuesday

The High Court has made orders requiring members of the Travelling community to vacate an unofficial halting in County Tipperary by Tuesday of next week.  

The orders were granted by Ms Justice Leonie Reynolds in favour of Tipperary County Council against eight persons whose presence at Cabragh Bridge, Cabragh, Thurles, it is alleged constitutes a public nuisance.   

The council's proceedings are against William McCarthy, Elizabeth McCarthy, Mary Ellen McCarthy, Jimmy McCarthy, John McCarthy, Winnie McCarthy, Belinda O'Reilly and Ned O'Reilly. 

Last week, the council obtained permission to serve short notice of the proceedings against the defendants.  

The matter returned before the court on Thursday.  

David Humphries Bl for the council said that the council had served the proceedings on the defendants and was seeking injunctions compelling the defendants to remove their mobile homes, vehicles and caravans from Cabragh Bridge, and not cause any obstruction to the roadway. 

The council also sought orders requiring the defendants to vacate and cease residing on or anywhere in the vicinity of Cabragh Bridge, which it says is an inappropriate and unsuitable place to reside. 

Counsel told the court that the council had offered the defendants alternative accommodation, including at another halting site which was relatively close to the Cabragh Bridge. While that offer had been made some time ago and had not been accepted by the defendants, counsel said the offer of alternative accommodation "remained open". 

There was no appearance by any of the defendants when the case was called on.  

Ms Justice Reynolds said she was satisfied to grant the orders sought and said that the defendants must vacate the site by 5pm on July 16 next. 

The defendants, the judge added, must be served with the court's orders by the gardaí by 5pm Friday, July 12.   

The court heard that members of the McCarthy family have lived on the bridge for 40 years. The bridge had formed a part of the R659 regional road. The bridge was left in place following the construction of a new section of that road some years ago.

Tipperary County Council has made provision for Travellers who had resided on the bridge to be accommodated in six unit group housing scheme, which is now ready for occupation. 

However, the defendants in this action, who it claims moved to the site on various dates between 2015 and September 2018, are not being accommodated in the new scheme.

The council has offered the defendants help in securing alternative accommodation, but says it needs the site at Cabragh Bridge cleared. The council added that it asked the defendants to leave the site, but they did not do so.

The council said that in light of the refusal, it had no alternative other than bring legal proceedings against the defendants.