Residents not happy with Co Council's reply on weed

May 14th, 2019 10:05 PM

By Kieran O'Mahony

Knotweed: still visible on site

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RESIDENTS of a Clonakilty housing estate, who have publicly voiced concerns over the spread of knotweed, have said they are not satisfied with the County Council’s response.

The residents of the Woodlands estate in the town are worried about the spread of the invasive plant from a nearby proposed development of 51 social homes.

Following representations by councillors, the residents received a reply from the Council acknowledging that Japanese knotweed ‘has been identified in a number of locations within the project site.’

It said that a specialist environmental consultant was appointed to assess and inspect the extent of it.

‘The photographs as provided by constituents appear to show knotweed in a location already identified for treatment. It was advised and proposed to excavate any contaminated areas of the site and bury the contaminated materials within a cell, located within the site boundary,’ said a Council spokesperson. ‘The tenders for the construction of the project includes that the contractor is to appoint a specialist consultant to supervise and certify the works.’

However, residents in Woodlands, off the Fernhill Rd, said they are not happy with the Council’s reaction. ‘The response we received does not allay any of our fears regarding the spread of this invasive plant into our properties from Beechgrove.’ 

They want to know why signs were not put up if it was known to contain the plant, and why only one area of the site was cordoned off, even though the original plans stated there were four areas containing knotweed.

‘There was a similar issue in Castlemartyr when the plant was buried in a plastic membrane by the Council. It leaked out, however, and began growing. The plan to move such an invasive plant closer to an existing estate makes no sense and only increases the potential for the plant to spread into our properties,’ said a resident.

The residents – who have photographed the plant on-site – want assurances that the knotweed will be contained and properly dealt with.

‘We want to know will the option for the Japanese knotweed to be removed offsite be considered, and will a different location be found for the proposed estate?’ they added.

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