Local Councillor Cadogan Enright accompanied local residents in Ballyculter in formally walking Cargy Lane and reasserting their right of way which had been gated off and dug up over Halloween.
Cllr Cadogan Enright said “I strongly support local people in reasserting their right of way from Churchtown Road down to Drumroe road, and commend their determination and patience with council officials in filling in the forms needed to get the road reopened. The lane is still open at the Churchtown Road end, and local people can access their houses from that direction, but it imposes great inconvenience on them. Many other locals find their right of way for moving cattle, going to school and attending mass blocked off.”
Paul Carville described how he had used the laneway to move his cattle for over 30 years and said that the lane was used by local people each week going to Mass in the church which was refurbished in 1758 so it had to have been in use before that.
Anne Polley said her father is now almost 90 and had moved livestock down the lane all his working life, she described how surprised she and other local residents were when the laneway was blocked off over the long Halloween weekend last month.
Laura Dempsey described how as an athlete she had used the lane since she was 13 years of age for training, running and fitness and how she and her partner used the lane to move cattle up until it was removed last month. The alternative now is to have to take the cattle three miles around by road, a completely unrealistic alternative given the width of the local roads, the length of the detour and lack of line of sight available to motorists along most of its length.
Jim Sloan: Had used the lane for his pony and trap every week for almost 30 years, and could remember he and his grandfather walking along the lane fifty years ago.
“This is a cut and dried case for the council to pursue. I will be suggesting that we do not go though the usual lengthy process, but should move to immediately serve and induction to the landowner to fully restore the right of way and ensure that it is as least as navigable as the rest of Cargy Lane”, concluded Cllr Cadogan Enright
NOTE, AS OF FEBRUARY 2012, THE COUNCIL HAS ASSERTED THE RIGHT OF WAY AND IS MOVING TO ENFORCE IT