Residents of Rosehill estate donned illuminous jackets and stared down construction lorries at the entrance to their estate for three hours early on Monday morning before interrupting a council meeting in the afternoon.
The residents of the city estate feel they have exhausted all other routes available to them and that they have no choice but to block the developers entrance to the site and protest in order to highlight the issues affecting them.
A standoff with an articulated lorry went on for almost an hour before senior gardaí intervened. The lorry, a 40-foot articulated heavy-goods vehicle laden with scaffolding material, refused to budge and remained blocking one side of the Kells Road. Gardaí conferred with the 20 protesters, who eventually backed down at 10.30am.
Simon Dooley, a Rosehill resident, said that the council had been of very little help so far. He said there are still a number of outstanding issues with the first two phases of development in Rosehill but that rather than address these the council was pushing through with phase three. The residents have attempted to get the developer, Castlelands Construction, to address the issues by taking a legal action, but to no avail. “The residents took the developer to court at our own expense, we’ve been doing the council’s job,” said Mr Dooley.
In a statement issued by the protesting residents, they accused Kilkenny County Council of “self-serving actions.”
The protesters’ statement said: “Rosehill residents feel frustrated and aggrieved at the self-serving actions of Kilkenny County Council who seem to have total disregard, and a lack of respect for the hard-working homeowners and young families in Rosehill.”
The Rosehill residents are not just protesting at the fact that the council are building 27 new houses on their estate, but also the manner in which they are doing it. They complain of being woken constantly by construction workers at 6.30am, constant breeches of noise limits, access to their homes being blocked by construction equipment and the danger posed to their children by vehicles entering and exiting the estate. Residents reported all of these complaints to the council but they feel that they are being ignored.