Tag Archives: national park

Killarney House & Gardens opening in 2015

21 Nov

Killarney House and Gardens will be open to the public next year according to the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. Heather Humphries says the €7.1 million Killarney House restoration project will be substantially complete by the end of this year, with a view to the site being fully operational and open to the public in 2015.

Fine Gael Senator for Kerry and Seanad Chief Whip, Paul Coghlan has welcomed the confirmation saying the refurbished house, will function as a national park visitor centre and will provide an added attraction for visitors to the town. The visitor centre project includes a newly built extension to the house and an interpretative centre for the national park.

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Killarney House to undergo €1m refurbishment work

27 Jul

Remedial works, estimated to cost €1 million, are to start shortly at Killarney House, Minister for Heritage John Gormley has confirmed. The house is part of an early 18th-century French-style chateau which was donated to the State in 1998 but had been allowed fall into disrepair.

The works, which will also see the reinstatement of pleasure gardens, west of the house, will begin shortly, while the fabric of the building will be tackled in the autumn. It is hoped a complete refurbishment of the building, its courtyard, pigeon house and stables, will be carried out eventually, the Minister said.

The house, dating from 1721, was donated to the State in 1998 on the death of Mary McShain, wife of American builder, horseowner and philanthropist John McShain.

The McShains had earlier handed over much of what is now Killarney National Park – including islands and castles – to the State for a nominal sum. Killarney House was the last remaining significant piece of property, formerly part of the old Kenmare estate and home of the Earls of Kenmare.

There has been intense concern and embarrassment about the state of the property and squatters were at one time confirmed to be living there. Welcoming the announcement, outgoing mayor of Killarney Michael Gleeson said it was hoped the area would host a performance area for plays and concerts.

The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has already taken initial steps to secure the building including damp-proofing, drainage works and the installation of a security system, Mr Gormley said.

via Irish Times

Killarney Jarveys Lose High Court Challenge

13 May

A group of jarveys who brought a legal challenge to a ban on them using Killarney National Park in a row over the use of dung catchers for their horses have lost their High Court Case.

Mr Justice Liam McKechnie ruled that the National Park and Wildlife Services was entitled to insist that the jarveys use dung catching devices as part of its duty to manage and maintain the park.

The judge also said it was a matter of regret that the jarveys had refused to operate the dung catchers even on a trial basis.

27 jarveys took the High Court action after being refused access to the park last year for refusing to use dung catchers on their horses.

They argued in court that the National Park and Wildlife Services had no power to ban them from the park.

They also argued that it was an attack on their property and personal rights, was discriminatory and infringed their constitutional right to earn a living.

The judge ruled against them on all points.

They had also argued the devices were unsafe and raised concerns for animal welfare.

However the judge remarked that the best way to prove their concerns on these issues was to use the devices on a trial basis in a controlled environment.

Mr Justice McKechnie said the NPWS had a duty to manage and maintain the park for the enjoyment of the public.

He said there was a much higher level of environmental awareness now than there was 20 years ago and those with responsibility for this had to respond.

He said tourists were much more discerning than in the past and the product being offered to them must reflect that.

He cited the potentially hazardous conditions posed by dung on hard surfaces of the park in the rain, the smell and flies, which all constituted potential problems for health, welfare and safety.

He also cited the potential problems for wheel chair users and buggies.

Jarveys & NPWS invited to appear before Committee

7 May

An Oireachtas Committee is to invite Killarney based jarveys and the National Parks and Wildlife service to make presentations to it. The Joint Committee on the Environment, Heritage and Local Government says this will happen when judicial proceedings have finished.

The invitation follows requests by Kerry County Councillor Michael Healy-Rae and South Kerry Deputy Tom Sheahan. A judgement is due on May 13th on the case brought by 27 Killarney based jarveys after they were banned from Killarney National Park by the NPWS. The jarveys refused to attach dung catching devices to the horses’ carts on the grounds of health and safety.
However, the NPWS rejected this, saying paths in the park were consistently fouled by the jarveys’ horses.

Reserved judgment in jarvey drivers case

12 Feb

The High Court has reserved judgment in a challenge brought by a group of jarvey drivers to ban them from driving through Killarney National Park unless they agree to attach dung-catchers to their horse-drawn carriages.

The 27 jarveys, who claim the dung-catchers are dangerous, are seeking a court order quashing the ban imposed last October by the National Parks and Wildlife Service.

The case concluded after two days this week before Mr Justice Liam McKechnie who reserved judgment.

The jarveys claim there was no lawful authority for imposition of the condition of attaching dung-catchers or to refuse them permits to access the park on grounds they would not agree to the dung-catchers.

via The Irish Times

Jarveys locked out of Killarney National Park

14 Oct

Up to 40 jarveys have once again been locked out of Killarney National Park. The National Parks and Wildlife Service said it had no choice after the jarveys continued to refuse to attach dung-catching devices to their jaunting cars in the park.

The NPWS said it was compelled to take this action as a very last resort. In a statement issued this morning, the NPWS says the park remains open to everybody

In July, jarveys were stopped from entering the park because none of them were using the obligatory dung-catching device. Protests followed and the jarveys made an application for a judicial review which is still before the High Court.

In the meantime, the NPWS let them back into the park in the hopes that a resolution would be found with the help of an independent facilitator. However, the facilitator has now indicated that no progress has been made because the jarveys would not engage with him.

Reports of flasher in Killarney National Park

30 Jul

Gardaí in Killarney are warning women against walking alone in Killarney National Park following reports of a flasher. According to reports, the man, believed to be Irish and in his 40’s about 5’10” (175cm) in height with dark hair, has jumped naked from bushes into the path of oncoming women. An article in the Irish Examiner states that “It is understood he was completely naked on at least one occasion and was seen wearing women’s pink underwear around his ankles at other times.”

While Gardaí are keen to assure people that no-one has been attacked, they have increased patrols in the area, and are advising women not to walk unaccompanied in the park.