A FILLING station owner is living in fear after suffering a series of robberies at his rural business.
Poole’s service station and shop in Rosenallis has been targeted by thieves up to six times this year. There is no public lighting outside the premises, which makes it more vulnerable to robberies.
The owner’s plight was raised at the Borris-in-Ossory/Mountmellick district council meeting, where cllr David Goodwin appealed for a public light to be erected outside the premises.
The Rosenallis councillor said: “This poor unfortunate shopkeeper, who pays his rates, has been robbed five or six times already this year. He has no location on the property himself to put up a light, so it has to be erected by the council.”
Area engineer Brenda Cuddy pointed out that there is public street lighting across the road from the service station.
But Cllr Goodwin replied: “The lighting across the road is not worth a sugar to him. Surely, before we have a casualty or have a man thrown out of business, we can get money to put up a light.”
Supporting the appeal, cathaoirleach Seamus McDonald asked whether “a few quid” could be transferred from the footpath budget. He stressed that the service station owner is “living in fear” of further robberies.
The engineer said funding for footpaths has already been spent. However, each councillor has discretionary funding for lighting and could decide to change the location of a lamp-post for which money has already been allocated.
The engineer said she would refer the issue to council engineer Farhan Naseim, who has responsibility for public lighting in the county.
She told cllr Goodwin: “It would be Mr Naseim’s call to see if we can put a light outside Poole’s. If lights have not gone up yet in the area you have chosen, you can talk to him to see if you can change the location of your lighting.”
Cllr McDonald said he would also be willing to transfer his funding, if necessary, for the erection of a public light outside the store. Cllr Goodwin suggested that cllr McDonald be the one to approach the engineer, as he has “more clout as the one wearing the chain” in his role as cathaoirleach.