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Letters to the Editor: Best time for airport to do an upgrade

May 15th, 2021 3:10 PM

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EDITOR – In reference to your article last week ‘Travel agents are critical of airport’s 10-week closure’, may I state that the airport has been progressing, at pace, the detailed engineering design and funding for rebuilding the main runway since last summer when the decimating impact of Covid-19 on the aviation industry was readily apparent.

We are and have remained opened throughout the pandemic, serving repatriation flights, essential travel, medical and organ transplant flights, search and rescue missions as well as for cargo operations.

With passenger numbers still down 97%, it makes prudent business sense to fast track major capital investment projects now, while the airport is extremely quiet.

The reconstruction of the main runway at Cork Airport, when completed later this year, will be a key strategic asset for the South of Ireland for the next 20 years.

Management at Cork Airport has been engaged with all its major stakeholders  in relation to the runway reconstruction and remediation project since last autumn, given it is the single biggest construction project at Cork Airport since the opening of the new Terminal Building in 2006.

In our extensive planning, we have also undertaken workshops with over 20 other international airports in the UK and Europe who have completed similar capital projects in recent years.

Public tendering commenced back in November in accordance with EU procurement guidelines for a major capital project of this scale and we plan to award the contract this month.

We will continue to be open all summer this year, around the clock, for whatever flights are operating and we will then complete the rebuilding runway project over a 10-week off-peak period allowing us to reopen for what we plan will be a busy Christmas and a bumper 2022 for everyone in the travel industry.

Kevin Cullinane,

Head of communications,

Cork Airport

We can learn to reach out every time

EDITOR – THE Darkness into Light events had a special resonance this year because we seem to be all making that journey.

Months of lockdown, akin to a form of martial law, and the disturbing necessity to avoid our fellow human beings have pushed people to the limits of their endurance e... or maybe beyond.

These dark times we’ve been living through must surely give way to brighter, happier days as we emerge from what has been a prolonged living nightmare.

For anyone already contemplating suicide this past year and a half must have been especially dark. With better days ahead, though, I believe there’s everything to live for.

No problem, no challenge, is worth ending one’s life.  There’s always help and advice. Anyone who picks up the phone or talks to a trusted friend will find that the situation wasn’t nearly as insoluble as it seemed. There’s always a way out, a way back. No question about it.

Apart from finding a way out of the crux, dilemma, or adversity (whatever it was), staying alive has the merit of averting lifetimes of grief for those left behind.

In my opinion, one of the most powerful arguments for choosing life over death in any consideration of suicide is the testimony of people who have had near death experiences after unsuccessful suicide attempts.

But what interests me is the fact that, according to research, the overwhelming majority of people attempting suicide who had this experience were relieved to have survived. They became utterly convinced that life was, after all, worth living.

That leaves me thinking that suicide is not the best option, no matter what the problem might be, or however overpowering or irresolvable it might seem.

Soon, the stifling darkness of the Covid era will have passed. Just think how glorious will be that emerging light of recovery.

Death will catch up with us soon enough! Right now, we can get on with our lives, and if there‘s a problem we can reach out. Every time.

Let’s give life a chance!

John Fitzgerald,

Callan,

Co Kilkenny

Sad passing of a great stalwart of the marts

EDITOR– It is with great sadness we report the sudden passing of one of the great stalwarts of the cattle trade.

Barry Walsh passed away suddenly in March of this year, while tending to his cattle.

Barry traded in cattle for most of his life, throughout Munster and further afield in both marts and through private farm to farm deals. He was a very prominent buyer of cattle in both Cork county (Skibbereen and Bandon marts) and throughout Munster for nearly 40 years.

Barry was a hardworking man who carried out his business in a very professional, courteous and efficient manner and he forged many lifelong friendships along the way. His presence and charismatic nature will be sorely missed by many at the ‘ringside’.

We extend our deepest condolences to his daughter Catherine, sons Richard and Anthony and to his extended family.

May the sod rest lightly on Barry’s soul as he has joined his beloved wife Margaret in heaven.

C O’Neill, J Lynch and colleagues,

Rathpeacon,

Co Cork

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