Kilkenny, we have a hurling problem

LOCAL councillors have expressed concerns over young people playing hurling in busy public areas around Kilkenny City, following a number of incidents in which people were almost hit.

LOCAL councillors have expressed concerns over young people playing hurling in busy public areas around Kilkenny City, following a number of incidents in which people were almost hit.

At last week’s meeting of the borough council, Councillor John Coonan (FF) said that a small number of youths had taken to playing hurling in inappropriate busy pedestrian areas, such as the Parade, Kieran Street, and outside the MacDonagh Shopping Centre. He says that the practice is unfair, particularly on older people or parents with young children, and that it also presents a hazard to traffic.

“We support and encourage hurling of course, but this is not fair on people,” he said.

“Trying to walk past people hitting a sliothar up and down the path is decidedly uncomfortable as well as being dangerous. It is increasing, and these are not the places to play football or hurling - we have loads of facilities and places in Kilkenny to play.”

Other councillors voiced their agreement.

Cllr Coonan says that on one occasion, the problem was so bad that he had to call the guards. In another incident, a cyclist had to duck and swerve out suddenly to avoid being struck.

“It’s a very small group of people, but this is a practice that is creeping in,” he said.

“It has the potential to cause an accident, and is disorderly conduct if the gardai have to come out and correct people.

“All we would ask is that people be conscious of this, schools and teachers. I’m saying it now because I want to nip it in the bud.”