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Skatepark gets the official seal of approval

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By Michelle Crean

Skateboarders from Killarney and beyond will be delighted to hear that plans for the €220,000 new dedicated state-of-the-art skatepark have been given the official seal of approval.

The new fun facility for anyone interested in the sport will be developed at Killarney Sports and Leisure Centre and it's hoped to be up and running early next year.

Six councillors in attendance at Wednesday's Special Killarney MD Meeting, held in the ANAM Cultural Centre in town, voted in favour for it to go-ahead. Cllr John O'Donoghue was absent from the meeting.

There were 26 submissions for the skatepark, the majority of which agreed that it would be a positive addition for the youth of the town.

The skatepark's surface will be constructed using a smooth durable concrete to minimise noise pollution. Access to the facility will be by way of 1.8m wide concrete footpaths located within the grounds of the complex.

The skatepark will be insured and maintained by Kerry County Council and there'll be a 2.4 high perimeter fencing surrounding the facility with two lockable access gates, and CCTV.

The skatepark opening hours during winter are planned from 9am to 6pm and during the summer from 9am to 9pm, as agreed by the councillors at the meeting. During the night it'll be closed to the public with no lighting to discourage any anti-social behaviour.

The Council have agreed to co-fund the project in the amount of 30% and it's hoped further funds will be made available from the Sports Capital Grant which will be announced this November.

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The idea for the project was suggested by Cllr Donal O'Grady three years ago to give skateboard enthusiasts a dedicated place for the sport in town. Many sites were looked at and plans had been ongoing in the background with the support of Town Manager Angela McAllen and County Manager Moira Murrell.

During Wednesday's meeting Cllr Grady positively welcomed the project and thanked everyone involved for their support.

"I'm so grateful to everyone who was involved, including my fellow councillors," he said. "I thank Kerry County Council, they put a lot of work, certainly our county manager, she's put a lot of work in there providing the site. It's something that we as a Council can be very proud of, I've no doubt in my mind about that. We have a lot of work to do to iron it out to make sure it's top of the range."

He added that the KDYS came on board to represent the youth of the town which he's also very grateful for.

In their submission, Killarney Skatepark Committee, signed by Chairperson Sean Murphy and Secretary Barry Coen, said that "the group is committed to supporting the building of a purpose built facility in Killarney for skateboarding, BMX riding, rollerblading, scooter and or other craft that may join the realm of extreme sports in the future". 

"Through this letter, we wish to pledge our full support for a skatepark; a project which we firmly believe has the potential to benefit the wider community. Skateparks are proven amenities in providing an opportunity for (young) people to socialise in a safe environment, through a sport which offers significant physical and mental benefits. We also believe that the skatepark will diversity what Killarney has to offer to the many tourists who visit our town each year, in turn supporting local businesses."

Councillor Niall Kelleher welcomed the skatepark and said he "was absolutely blown away by the engagement from the community" for this project.

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Pedestrianisation poll: Our readers have their say

By Sean Moriarty The question of pedestrianisation in the town centre has divided Killarney for years but a survey by the Killarney Advertiser this week shows the town slightly more in favour of it. A total of 37.14 percent of respondents want the pedestrianisation of Plunkett St to remain as it is – closed to […]

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By Sean Moriarty

The question of pedestrianisation in the town centre has divided Killarney for years but a survey by the Killarney Advertiser this week shows the town slightly more in favour of it.

A total of 37.14 percent of respondents want the pedestrianisation of Plunkett St to remain as it is – closed to traffic on a permanent basis while 24.76 want it to go back to its pre-pandemic arrangement where the street was only closed to vehicular traffic between 7pm and 7am each night.

An additional 34.29 percent want to see an increase in pedestrianisation in town centre by extending the Main St arrangement that was in place during the summer. In that period the town’s main thoroughfare was closed to traffic, day and night, during the weekend.

Only 20 percent of the respondents want to abolish pedestrianisation altogether, but that is still a significant number ensuring that this debate will linger on for a long time yet.

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National television exposure for local campaign

By Michelle Crean A local group hosting a life-saving information day tomorrow (Saturday) are to receive huge exposure on national TV after a crew came down to interview them about their campaign. Members of Killarney Cardiac Response Unit (KCRU) – who are planning a ‘Restart a Heart Day’ to raise awareness about life-saving techniques – […]

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By Michelle Crean

A local group hosting a life-saving information day tomorrow (Saturday) are to receive huge exposure on national TV after a crew came down to interview them about their campaign.

Members of Killarney Cardiac Response Unit (KCRU) – who are planning a ‘Restart a Heart Day’ to raise awareness about life-saving techniques – invited journalist Paul Byrne and Virgin Media TV crew to town this week.

It’s hoped their campaign will be broadcast tonight (Friday) or tomorrow (Saturday).

The KCRU event takes place tomorrow in ANAM Arts and Cultural Centre between 10.30am and 4pm as part of the European Restart a Heart Day. It’ll include CPR demos, public information, an art display, a video launch w️ith many prizes to be won.

“The crew interviewed Community Responder Helen Duggan who explained the events taking place on Saturday,” Kevin O’Leary from KCRU told the Killarney Advertiser.

“European Restart a Heart Day was founded with the support of the European parliament and takes place on October 16 every year. We’re spreading the message that 20 minutes of your time could make all the difference saving a life.”

In 2021, the focus of the event is on survivors with the hashtag #CPRSavedMyLife.

“With this campaign we want to create awareness that everyone can learn CPR and facilitate BLS courses in schools and public locations.”

He said they hope that Kerry TDs Danny Healy-Rae, Brendan Griffin and Minister for Education Norma Foley will be in attendance throughout the day, and the public are invited to attend.

“Find out how simple actions can save lives. Prizes include a three day First Aid course valued at €300, two First Aid kits, and a voucher for a local business.”

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