Town blocked in protest over road

Traffic tailbacks of several kilometres resulted as more than 500 people blocked a town centre in protest at the condition of its main street’s road surface and footpaths.

Town blocked in protest over road

People in Buttevant, Co Cork, vented their anger at the undulating surface of the road which has resulted in several accidents in the past year.

A number of pedestrians have tripped and broken bones, while some lorries passing through have had parts of their loads shift and slip off because of the uneven surface.

Men, women and children, many of them holding placards, marched from both sides of the town to block its centre shortly after 5pm yesterday.

The protest led to peak time traffic on the busy Cork-Limerick road grinding to a halt.

Buttevant Community Council chairman John Lee said people were having accidents on the uneven surface “almost on a weekly basis”.

Locals maintain that the number of people who have fallen and broken bones now runs into double figures.

“People have had more than enough,” said Mr Lee. “We’ve been communicating with the NRA for more than two years about getting the road properly repaired and we haven’t received an adequate response.”

Jerry Mullally, a member of Mallow Town Council, marched in the protest.

“I came here to support the people of Buttevant,” he said. “Five years ago when I was on the county council I met with an NRA delegation and we were shown plans for upgrading the street. They came to nothing.”

The protestors were joined by a number of truck drivers who regularly bring loads through the town.

“The government collects income tax, motor tax and the new property tax with promises of better local facilities, road conditions and services,” said Sinn Féin TD Sandra McLellan. “What is needed is a commitment to have the necessary works done as quickly as possible.”

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