Caravan owners fined for being in Tipperary during lockdown
Three men who were part of a group that parked six caravans outside Nenagh during lockdown last year were fined by Nenagh District Court for breaching Covid-19 travel regulations.
Kieran Doyle, 6 Croghan Road, Birr; Hubert Doyle, also of 6 Croghan Road, Birr, and Gerry Doyle, 18 Eden Road, Birr, were summonsed for the offences at Tullaheady, Nenagh, on April 9, 2021.
The court heard that the caravans were moved on to land at Tullaheady, Nenagh, and the gardaí went to speak to their owners. They explained to the men that they were in breach of the travel regulations.
The defendants were told to return home to Birr and warned that if they were still there the following day they would be issued with fixed penalty charge notices.
Their solicitor, Liz McKeever, told the court that restrictions had been due to be lifted on April 5, 2021, but had not been lifted until April 12.
“They are Travellers, and, as such, part of their culture is that they travel around the country,” she said.
Ms McKeever said that under the legislation, they should not be more than 5km from their place of residence, which could either be permanent or temporary.
Ms McKeever said that it was an accepted fact that the caravans were a temporary residence, and, as such, the men had not been outside their travel limit.
She told the court that, while they had addresses, the men would travel between Birr, Borrisokane, Nenagh and Ennis for most of the year and as far as they were concerned this was “part of their culture”.
Neither man had children of a school going age, said Ms McKeever.
However, Judge Elizabeth MacGrath pointed out that the men each had a location where they resided.
“I accept that they have a culture of travelling. But people have a culture of going on holidays, but they could not do it on that occasion,” she said.
Judge MacGrath fined each of the men €80.
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