The junction off the old N5 leading to Islandeady village, where the community want to see their stone wall reinstated.

New N5 in Mayo won't open unless community concerns over wall are addressed

A PROTEST blocking the opening of the new N5 has been proposed unless action is taken to reinstate a wall removed in Islandeady during construction works.

Councillor Ger Deere has again pleaded with the council roads design section to engage with the local community on restoring the stone wall on the entrance to the village off the old N5, while also addressing the height of a new land embankment that he says needs to be levelled out.

He implored the chief executive of Mayo County Council to make an 'urgent intervention' at yesterday's monthly meeting of the authority where members were told putting in the wall would cost an additional €250,000, and it would require also safety barriers.

Speaking after the meeting, Councillor Deere commented how the Great Wall of China cost less.

Director of services Tom Gilligan told the meeting it is a significant amount of work and it is not part of the proposal going forward.

Councillor Martin McLoughlin warned: “There will be no opening of the new road until they put back what they took away.”

It was, he said, 'a disgrace' the way the people were being treated. He didn't want to see the RTÉ cameras coming down and saying the road couldn't be opened because of a dispute over a wall which was removed and then not replaced.

The community would be happy with a wall that was a shorter distance than that removed, he added.

Local residents have been very patient, commented Councillor Michael Kilcoyne.

The only way to sort it out was to block the road and he would lead them if they were ready to walk.

Councillor Blackie Gavin supported this if they don't see any action on the issue.

A repeated call from Councillor Al McDonnell for a site meeting to be held in the next week or two was supported. Attendance should include local residents, councillors, TII, the contractor and senior council executives, he suggested.

“Getting all the parties together is the only way we can find a resolution to this,” commented Councillor McDonnell.

Mr. Gilligan said discussions have taken place on it. The council had already agreed a final contract with the contractor.

He was listening to the concerns of members but what they requested was unlikely given the costs.