My home has been here at Páirc na Coille for 12 years now. Most mornings I wake up to bird song and that is thanks in large part to living in close proximity to a substantial area of woodland. This area consists of native trees and undergrowth crucial to the survival of the wildlife that thrives and lives within its boundaries.
I am saddened by the possibility the Local Authority to in essence allows for the destruction of this wildlife habitat all in the name of “progress”. The council has the power to seek out alternative sites within its administrative control that are more suitable for development. All avenues should be explored to avoid impacting such an important site from an ecological standpoint.
In the Clare Biodiversity Action Plan published by Clare Council in 2017 it states as some of its main objectives:
To work with landowners, local communities, and other relevant groups to promote the
retention and conservation of existing trees and hedgerows, and to prevent the disruption
of connectivity between woodlands, hedgerows, and other valuable habitats;
To encourage proposals that enhance the landscape through positive management and
additional planting of native tree species;
To raise awareness of the importance of native woodlands and trees.
These objectives fly in the face of the council’s plans to sacrifice one of the few remaining substantial green areas close to Ennis town center. Rather than encouraging growth and preserving green space, the council is at risk of neglecting its responsibilities as the key stakeholder in ensuring the parklands and wooded areas of Ennis can be enjoyed by future generations. We must re-visit the viability and necessity of re-developing this land to avoid being held responsible for destroying this natural habitat here in Ennis by our children and grandchildren.