Public anger sees clamping at car park suspended

AMID much anger by motorists, clamping was halted yesterday at a popular publicly-owned city car park in Limerick.

The car park at the Potato Market, adjacent to city hall and the courthouse buildings at Merchant’s Quay, is owned and run by the Limerick Market Trustees.

However, the trustees at their meeting yesterday decided to suspend clamping.

It costs €120 to have a clamp removed.

Witnesses and jury members using the car park had been victims of clamping.

During the last sitting of the Central Criminal Court at Merchant’s Quay, Mr Justice Paul Carney, on being told that a jury member had his car clamped, asked that the matter be taken up with the Courts Service.

The clamping issue was raised at yesterday’s meeting of the 27-member Market Trustees and it was decided to suspend the practice.

The former Mayor of Limerick, Cllr Kevin Kiely said he was outraged at the clamping of cars owned by civic-minded people going to court to act in juries and to give evidence.

“People on juries and called as witnesses can’t leave court to change their parking tickets. Then to come out and find your car clamped is an outrage.”

He demanded the market trustees carry out an audit of the amount of money raised from clamping at the Potato Market. This money, he said, should be given to local charities.

One angry motorist said: “My ticket lapsed by 15 minutes. I was on business in the courthouse and when I came out, my car was clamped... 15 minutes and I had already put over €5 in the ticket machine.”

Another trustee, Cllr John Gilligan, said clamping was antisocial and should be prohibited.

He wants the Potato Market turned into a public plaza with a signature work of art to commemorate the Vikings.

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