By Helen Riddell
THE former Dursey cable car has been put to good use – as some newborn lambs are having a ‘swinging’ time in the stationary cab.
Although animals are not permitted to travel on the Dursey Island cable car anymore, these newborns have happily set up a ‘stable’ in the old green cable car, which now lies propped up on bricks on the farm of cable car operator Paddy Sheehan, at Dursey Sound.
Following the installation of the new cable car recently, the old car was left to one side on Paddy’s farm. He said that it wasn’t long before his hens laid claim to it as a new home, but it seems they have now been evicted since the lambs discovered it to be an ideal shelter, particularly in recent weeks when the area has experienced the odd unseasonal snow shower.
The cable car, which is the only one operating in Ireland, first went into service in 1969, crossing the treacherous 374m of the Dursey Sound on a daily basis, transporting islanders, visitors and livestock to and from the island. However, when it was replaced with a newer model, with it came health and safety regulations that outlawed the transportation of cows, calves and sheep. Only guide dogs are now permitted to be transported on the cable car.
Dursey is one of the key signature points on the Wild Atlantic Way, with initial indications predicting that 2016 will be a bumper year for tourists. And while sheep can no longer travel on the current cable car, these lambs are happy enough to be watch the tourists ‘flocking’ to the area, from their unique viewing spot.