Kerry County Council chairman John Brassil said “no camping” signs were being ignored and proposed that current beach bylaws be amended to deal with that issue and with casual trading in such areas. The bylaws were difficult to enforce as campers tended to stay for one night then move on, he told a council meeting.
However, Mr Brassil, who lives in the seaside resort of Ballyheigue, said he had no issue with campervans who were a very responsible group. “The council in Cobh, Co Cork, has made arrangements to facilitate temporary, overnight camping [of campervans] and I feel it is something this council should look at.”
Independent Cllr Michael Cahill, who lives in the Rossbeigh area, agreed facilities were needed for campervans and the council should consider providing facilities.
There has been opposition to campervans visiting Kerry, but there is a growing feeling that facilities should be provided to cater for what is a growth area in tourism.
In countries such as France, many towns and village have places where campervanners can get water and park overnight, and Irish campervan clubs have claimed this country is losing out on a lucrative segment of the tourism market by not having facilities.
Director of services Charlie O’Sullivan told the meeting the campervan issue would be best considered by a special committee of the council. Also, the council had received reports from campervan and caravanning clubs. A number of operators in Kerry provided facilities for campervans and needed to be supported, he said.