It would require 300,000 tons of sand to bring the beach back at Courtown; that is according to Senior Executive Engineer Ger Forde who was responding to members questions via-video link at last Tuesday’s monthly meeting of Gorey-Kilmuckridge Municipal District Council held in Gorey Library.
The discussion was prompted by the recent withdrawal of the Blue Flag status from Courtown in An Taisce’s International Awards 2020 with six Blue Flags and nine Green Coast Award recipients located around the Wexford coastline.
Mr. Ian Diamond, Coastal Awards Manager with An Taisce’s Environmental Education unit, stated that “due to the lower than normal beach sand levels Wexford County Council had no option but to withdraw the Blue Flag awarded to Courtown for the time being.”
A number of issues were raised by Cllrs Andrew Bolger and Cllr Diarmuid Devereux. It was said that the town was suffering by losing the Blue Flag, there were broken seats, dilapidated buildings and a hotel that need to be demolished. It was added the illegal camping continues to be a problem.
Cllr Fionntán Ó Suilleabháin instanced a situation where a fisherman was “frustrated and angry” because he could not enter Courtown Harbour on a calm day.
He recalled the dredging project costing €60,000 a year and the sand was taken a distance away at great cost. “Why wasn’t the sand deposited where the beach used to be?” asked Cllr Ó Suilleabháin. Blue Flags were awarded to Ballymoney North, Morriscastle, Ballinesker, Curracloe, Rosslare and Carne, while Green Coast Awards includes Cahore Point, Old Bawn Beach, Culleton’s Gap, St. Helen’s Bay, Ballyhealy, Cullenstown, Baginbun, Booley Bay and Grange.