BROKEN beds, chairs and dirty nappies are just some of the nasty items dumped beside a housing estate in Mountrath.
The ugly eyesore is devastating for residents of Fr O’Connor Crescent, as it destroys the appearance of their well-kept homes. They are also very worried about health and safety risks, as a large number of families with children live in the estate.
Piles of rubbish are regularly tipped into a field beside the housing scheme on the Trumera Road, which contains more than 50 homes. The unsightly rubbish heap currently contains household furniture, mattresses, broken beds, soiled nappies and a large quantity of plastic items.
A narrow laneway separates the field from the housing estate. Six months ago, the landowner undertook a major clean-up at his own expense. Yet dumping continued and now the site is even worse than it was late last year.
Geraldine Moore, secretary of the Fr O’Connor Crescent residents’ association, describes the ongoing dumping as particularly nasty and disappointing, as it destroys the efforts of residents to keep the area in good condition.
She said: “It’s a well-established estate and a lot of work has been done over the years on a voluntary basis to ensure that it is kept well and is a pleasant place to live. All that hard work is undone by this constant indiscriminate dumping and it is extremely disappointing for us. It is such a pity because the vast majority of residents are lovely people, who take good care of their homes.”
Geraldine added that despite constant vigilance and attempts to catch dumpers in the act, the residents’ association has been unable to identify those responsible. She said: “As a committee, we urge residents to report any dumping they see, whether it is done by local people or not but, unfortunately, we still don’t know who is responsible. It appears to happen in the dead of night and the problem gets worse during the long hours of darkness in wintertime.”
After the association reported the issue to the county council, a litter warden carried out a search of dumped items but was unable to find anything to identify the culprits. As the field is private land, the council does not have responsibility to clear the rubbish.
Geraldine commented: “People who dump rubbish seem to think that it is non-cost, but it is a big cost to the landowner, who has to pay for the clean-up. It is also a big cost to the residents, who have to live with this nasty eyesore on their doorsteps.”
The issue has been taken up by local councillor James Kelly, who describes the problem as soul-destroying for residents of the long-established estate, where the first house was built 48 years ago.
He said: “The residents’ association is a very hard-working group who have the estate in pristine condition and for this to be happening in their area is soul-destroying. It is also very unfair on the owner of the field, who had to undertake a major clean-up at his own expense and is now faced with the same again.
Cllr Kelly added: “The people who are doing this dumping should be ashamed of themselves, as they don’t seem to have any regard for health and safety issues in their own locality.”