By Dan Walsh
Parking difficulties at Morriscastle were raised by Cllr Mary Farrell at last Tuesday’s monthly meeting of Gorey-Kilmuckridge Municipal District Council. The road from Kilmuckridge village to the Blue Flag beach is two kilometres long and is a cul-de-sac. One way in and the same way out!
Cllr Farrell wondered what could be done and mentioned a few ideas like double yellow lines, a commuter bus or some way to get visitors to the shops and beach, which has wheelchair access, without the confusion and long delays.
A freshly completed footpath is very impressive but it is a long walk from the village and back and there is also the danger of the village becoming overcrowded if the car parking was to be stopped off from there.
Cllr Pip Breen said Morriscastle needs more car parking in the worst way. Families walking to the beach is out of the question. There was a suggestion that the Council lease land locally, but apparently that was tried before, and it didn’t work out. The Council were of the view that the purchase of land for permanent car parking that would be empty on wet days and only busy for three months of the year is not sustainable and that suggestion is off the table for the moment.
Cllr Diarmuid Devereux said there were similar parking problems at Ballymoney and Cahore. “Everyone wants to park on the pier,” he quipped, before adding that it was unrealistic to ask the Gardai to patrol every beach approach.
Cllr Willie Kavanagh floated the idea of visitors paying €2 or €3 per car and maybe have a word with local landowners and test their interest in such a proposal!
Executive Engineer, Gerry Forde, addressing the meeting via video link said the numbers were high on the previous Sunday at the beaches in Duncannon, Morriscastle and Curracloe. “We had two additional car parks at Curracloe, and they were still overflowing. It was like a Bank Holiday weekend,” he added.
Cllr Pip Breen noticed an increase in the number of camper vans, but you can’t move them on because there is nowhere to send them. “If there is an opportunity to make a business, we might as well have it. Holiday makers are paying guests to our county. We are a victim of our own success,” he concluded.
Mr Forde said Wexford County Council are monitoring the situation, which is seasonal and weather dependent, and county wardens will be asked to advise on the overcrowding and car parking chaos seen at our beaches.