Tag Archives: Limerick

This morning.

Further to last night’s shenanigans in Limerick…

“I understand this is very difficult, but we cannot see scenes like that happening again.

“It is very disappointing for the people who live in that area but also for everybody else who has been trying so hard over the last year.

“I do firmly believe the end is in sight. We are introducing the vaccinations and we are at a point where we want, in particular this month, to see our numbers coming down so we can start to reopen our society but if we continue to see scenes like this that will not happen.”

Minister for Justice Helen McEntee on the Pat Kenny Show on Newstalk earlier.

Ireland will not reopen as planned if we continue to see scenes like last night’s street party (Newstalk)


From top: The Statue of Viscount Fitzgibbon, Wellesley Bridge, Limerick destroyed in 1930  and its replacement The Limerick 1916 Memorial, Sarsfield Bridge, Limerick. Erected in 1954.

Further to the felling yesterday of the statue of slave trader Edward Calston in Bristol, England….

…Historian Liam Hogan writes:

Monuments are temporal symbols of power and politics. Territorial markings.

A statue or monument is not “history”. Its construction, retention, reverence, preservation, defence, relocation, removal, destruction, detonation (or unceremonious dump into a river) is.

At top is The Statue of Viscount Fitzgibbon, Wellesley Bridge, Limerick. Erected in 1885.

Above is: The Limerick 1916 Memorial, Sarsfield Bridge, Limerick. Erected in 1954.

Exact same location but very different social and political landscapes.

Viscount Fitzgibbon was killed during the Charge of the Light Brigade. He was the grandson of Lord Fitzgibbon the 1st Earl of Clare, infamous for his role in suppressing the 1798 rebellion and imposing the Act of Union with no concessions for Catholics.

For nationalists and republicans the monument thus represented the Protestant Ascendancy, elitism, allegiance to the Act of Union and loyalty to the British Empire.

Which is why there were at least three unsuccessful attempts to destroy it before the IRA eventually obliterated it with explosives in 1930.

Cllr Place attempted to pass a resolution condemning this act but it failed to garner the support of his peers. Alderman Wallace commented that “Fitzgibbon has passed, it is just as well that he has, as the class who erected him have also.”

Earlier: A Limerick A Day

Liam Hogan



At a protest against the homeless and housing crisis on Dublin’s O’Connell Street last November


On RTÉ’s Morning Ireland.

Dr Geraldine Casey, from the HSE’s Department of Public Health in Limerick, spoke to Dr Gavin Jennings about new research she led into the long-term effect of homelessness on children in Limerick.

The most recent figures from the Department of Housing state there were 3,422 children living in homeless accommodation, as of the final week in December 2019.

Dr Casey said:

“The actual physical space that children are growing up in is affecting their development. So, if you think about a child living in a hotel room they can always have their hand to something at all times. So actually they don’t know if a lot of the children can walk independently or not.

“Or a child doesn’t have the chance to walk independently. So they’re seeing that children are delayed in their physical development because of the homeless situation that they’re in and the environment that they’re placed in.

So last year 278 children in Limerick were housed in hotel rooms and another 250 in homeless hubs so it’s a significant number of children and a significant affect on them.”

“This study didn’t specifically look at that [the difference between family hubs and hotels]. We were just, I suppose this was an initial exercise and scoping, asking people what they thought the issues were. But I suppose a hotel room would be seen to be a worse environment than a homeless hub would be because hubs would provide much more space.

“Some of the hubs are actual apartments and other ones are rooms with shared and communal living.”

Dr Casey added:

“Another issue with the physical space is one service provider described a child having to do their homework on the toilet, sitting inside in the en suite because the younger children were asleep and so the lights needed to be turned off in the main room.

“And really I suppose there was a lot of issues with that, with affecting children’s education. So such is the trauma that children are experiencing they find it difficult to engage with education as well as the difficulties with just actually getting to school in the morning, if you’re placed in  hub which is placed far away from where you live [sic].”

“…we know that when children experience trauma in childhood that this will, can have an affect on their physical and mental health into the future.

“…that affect of the homelessness will last into the future and will impact on children’s health.”

“…there is growing research on adverse childhood experiences and homelessness for a young child is a traumatic experience so it absolutely would have affects. There are things that can mitigate those affects such as having strong relationships and having stability and obviously children who are placed in a homeless environment don’t have that stability.

“So we would have to, you know, look into helping them in the future with reducing those effects.”

Listen back in full here


In fairness.

Adds Eoin:

“What if we also reimagined this junction to maximise mobility of the city’s residents in sustainable leverageable ways?

Many residents of the city are driving here. It could be normal to get these people in and out by bike and walking if the environment wasn’t optimised to be hostile for them.

Others live outside the city and are driving into the city and onto Raheen along the Dock Road. To get to Raheen, many of these people could take the tunnel which we built under the Shannon. The tunnel costs money, though.

Well done to the city’s engineers. The junction is flowing quite well from a car perspective.

The trouble with that choice of two-lane 50km/h is that it comes at the cost of other possible ways to cross the Shannon in the city.”


From top: Map showing distance between Mount Trenchard and Foynes; along the N69 road between Mount Trenchard and Foynes

This morning.

Limerick migrant rights support group Doras Luimní called for the immediate closure of the Mount Trenchard direct provision Centre in Co Limerick.

It follows the publication of a 55-page report by Doras which contains research about the centre and details the experiences of some of the men who have lived and live in the centre.

Mount Trenchard is a single male direct provision centre located approximately 40km from Limerick city and 5km from Foynes village.

It was first opened in March 2005, subsequently closed in 2006 and then reopened in January 2007. It is privately managed by Baycaster Ltd.

As of November 2018 the centre had 83 residents with a capacity for 85.

From Doras’s report:

Mount Trenchard is located approximately 40km from Limerick city and approximately 5km from Foynes village, which is a 45-minute walk via a dangerous route from the centre.

The remote location of the Mount Trenchard centre was reported as the biggest challenge for all interviewed residents and impacts on residents in myriad ways, including preventing access to essential services, education and employment, as well as on residents mental health and wellbeing.

Interviewees referred to Mount Trenchard anecdotally as “an open prison” and compared it to Guantanamo Bay, due to the remoteness of the centre.

Such comparisons reflect the isolation and social exclusion experienced by residents.

“A lot of people they call it prison, they use the phrase prison. Because number one it is out of town, number 2 the location is very, very far from the route, which is the express route. Number 3 is you don’t see people around, you don’t see houses, you don’t see people, it’s just the building, where it is the male occupants. So everything that happens, happens within the hostel and inside the hostel.”

The closest amenities are located in Foynes village.

Reflecting on the trip from the centre to Foynes village, residents highlighted that it is a dangerous route with no footpath and with cars travelling at a speed of 100km per hour.

“It’s still dangerous, and last Monday actually somebody threw coffee at me. My friend actually 3 weeks ago somebody threw a diaper at him from the car. Imagine somebody had a diaper in the car, they planned it.”

In the experience of practitioners working with residents of Mount Trenchard, residents might stay in the centre for months on end without any interaction with the outside world.

They underlined that being physically removed from the wider community, with limited access to transport and being unable to walk to the nearest village, has a negative impact on residents’ well-being, including their mental health.

“It kind of comes back to the individual and their own wellbeing and where they’re at, at a given time will depend on how much they engage in something. So they could go for huge amount of time, 6 months to a year without having to interact with anything. And everybody is ok with that. That’s not healthy for lots of reasons.”

The report can be read in full here

Previously: “We Want To Be Heard By The Irish People”

‘Two Residents Were Transferred After Speaking Out’

‘Years In Isolation’

And in Limerick?

Gabriela Avram tweetz:

We can’t let this happen! Let’s join forces and find solutions!


Yesterday, in the Seanad…

Senator Maria Byrne, from Limerick, told the Minister for Communication Richard Bruton:

“My biggest concern is that the University of Limerick wrote to RTÉ two months ago, as well as previously, but has not had the courtesy of a reply.

“The university authorities offered a space on the campus. There are many proposals out there. So many people want to see Lyric FM kept in Limerick. The cultural aspect is so important. Lyric FM has become the meat in the sandwich. There is to be a 100% staff cut.

“The workers are not sure whether they will be offered jobs in Cork or Dublin. This is supposed to be voluntary redundancy but the studio is being closed.

“My understanding is that a kiosk-type facility will be built for the regional correspondent. A studio will not be available if RTÉ, 2FM or anyone else comes to Limerick. That will be a huge disadvantage for Limerick and the region.”

Senator Kieran O’Donnell, also from Limerick, told the minister:

“They have been there since 1999. The studio is the best state-of-the-art facility outside of Donnybrook. It is in the heart of Limerick city and houses the RTÉ regional studio and Lyric FM.

Lyric FM has the lowest cost per hour of any RTÉ station. I would make the counterbalancing case that there is a strong argument for the decentralisation of other arms of RTÉ, such as 2FM, to the Lyric FM studio in Limerick.

“A large amount of capacity is available and the livelihoods of 23 people are at stake.”

Transcript via Oirechtas.ie

Previously: Moya’s Merry Dance

Question Time