JAMES Fort in Kinsale has become like ‘party central’ at the weekends, according to one local councillor, who said the place has become littered with rubbish, while volunteers are getting abuse from youths gathered there for attempting to clean up.
Cllr Marie O’Sullivan (FG) raised the issue at last month’s online meeting of Bandon Kinsale Municipal District and said that it’s getting to the stage now that a tragedy might occur.
Tents, chairs and piles of bottles and cans have been dumped there following parties at the site.
‘Call outs are going out on social media and it’s not local teens at all but it seems they are coming down from the city and it’s an accident waiting to happen as there is lots of drinking and carrying on going on,’ said Cllr O’Sullivan.
‘It’s really concerning especially as it’s so near the water too and there is a great risk.’
Cllr O’Sullivan said volunteers turned up on one day last week and they received ‘abuse’ from young people who were gathered there drinking.
‘Kinsale town is looking great and the Tidy Towns groups are doing Trojan work but we don’t people leaving here with a bad taste in their mouths.’
She asked if the Municipal District could put something up on social media that this behaviour won’t be tolerated and that it’s an OPW site which is protected and must be respected
‘They don’t read signs and they look at their phones more.’
Her colleague, Cllr Kevin Murphy said he too has received similar complaints from people about what is going on there and he event went over to see it for himself.
‘It’s owned by the OPW but we are in charge of the land around it and the only way that we can ensure that there is no vandalism there is to put up fencing. Fence it off at a certain time in the morning or night,’ said Cllr Murphy.
‘St James Fort is a very historic tower and we should do everything to protect it. People are leaving burnt out BBQs and bottles and cans there and there is anti-social behaviour going on.’
Senior executive office Mac Dara O-h-Icí said safety is important and said he would ask the harbourmaster to make sure the ring buoys are there but had concerns about any plans to fence it off.
‘The only thing is that people have always had unrestricted access to the site so putting up fencing would be a big change and also because it’s an historic site we would have to be careful about any type of possible fencing,’ said Mr Ó-h-Icí.
He said he would also look into putting up social media posts.