Dozens apply for first Killarney jarvey licence advertised in years

Dozens of applications have been received for a single Killarney jarvey licence — the first hackney horse and carriage licence to have been publicly advertised in generations.

The successful applicant will be drawn by lot — such is the level of interest in the traditional Killarney trade.

Some 66 applications have been deemed “valid” and the opportunity to drive a horse and carriage for hire to Ross Castle and down by Lough Léin for an annual licence fee of €65 will be offered to the first name drawn.

Expressions of interest were invited in December for the licence, after moves at local council meetings to have the licence kept within traditional jarvey families failed.

Cllr Maura Healy-Rae in particular urged that families with experience of working with horses should have a priority.

This was rejected as 2010 bylaws, which sparked controversy because it forced horses to wear dung devices, say jarvey licences are non-transferrable and there was also a question of competition law. The single licence is one of just 37 Killarney town jarvey licences.

Recent moves by jarvey companies, including legal action to increase the number of licences to meet demand, have so far failed.

Nonetheless, the level of interest has surprised officials. The applicants are mostly from the Killarney area, although a small number are from Kenmare and surrounding towns. The new jarvey will be governed by the town bylaws.

The priority for the council in awarding of the licence is tax clearance, a spokesman said.

“They will have three weeks to submit insurance, tax clearance, etc. If they do not provide this information in the time period then the second person drawn will be able apply for the licence,” a council spokesman said.

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