Written Answers. - Freshford (Kilkenny) Flooding.

Liam Aylward

Question:

109 Mr. Aylward asked the Minister for Finance if his attention has been drawn to the flooding which is occurring consistently at Bohercrushia Street, Freshford, County Kilkenny, which made the roads impassable during the recent bad weather; and if he will seek clarification from the Office of Public Works as to whether it is responsible for the river which caused the flooding; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1937/96]

I have been made aware by reports received by my office transmitted through the Department of the Environment from the various local authorities in the south and south east, including Kilkenny County Council, about the extent of the flooding and damages caused as a consequence of the recent bad weather.

While I have no specific details of the particular problem at Freshford, County Kilkenny, mentioned by the Deputy I can confirm that the Office of Public Works do not have any responsibility for the Neunna river in this case, which is a tributary of the Nore. They would only assume such a responsibility on the basis of either a comprehensive arterial drainage scheme for the entire Nore river catchment area, in which Freshford is situated, prepared by them under the Arterial Drainage Act, 1945, or a certified drainage-flood relief scheme for the alleviation of localised flooding in the Freshford area, prepared by them under the Arterial Drainage Acts, 1945 and 1995, which gives them powers to carry out such schemes. Freshford, County Kilkenny is not included in the eight schemes in the current priority programme of drainage-flood relief schemes being undertaken by the Office of Public Works. This programme comprises schemes for Carlow Town; Cappamore, County Limerick-Newport, County Tipperary; Duleek, County Meath; Dunmanway, County Cork; Gort Town, County Galway; Kilkenny City; Sixmilebridge, County Clare, and Williamstown, County Galway. However, I am aware that there are many other areas throughout the country which suffer periodic flooding and it is proposed to establish a national priority programme of such areas to be considered for flood relief schemes. Freshford, County Kilkenny, will be considered along with those other areas for inclusion in that priority programme.