a KILDARE father of three, who has been living in a mobile home for four years while trying to get planning permission, has blasted Kildare County Council.
Ger Hanafey has made three attempts to build a two-storey home on his site at Coologmartin, Donadea since 2006. However, they were all axed, as was a subsequent appeal to An Bord Pleanala.
He has accused the local authority of putting incorrect information on the planning reports .
“They are biased towards me. They should be answerable to someone. Where else can I go now. I take my kids here at the weekends. We have spent four winters here and we had no water when the pipes froze.
“I had to carry over a five gallon drum of water from the neighbours at Christmas. The wife and kids had to move out. I can’t blame them,” he explained. “I have no problem with my neighbours getting planning. It’s none of my business but all I want is a house for my kids. Everyone else was allowed to build around me but I wasn’t.”
“They said I never showed I was from the area. My father was born here up the road and there are seven generations of Hanafeys from here. I got maps from Dublin and I marked where my father was from. My father is buried in the parish, as is his father and mother. They said I never showed I was a farmer for the past five years. They said the land adjacent was used as a dumping ground for imported material. That’s nothing got to do with me.”
He said the planner noted the top soil had been removed from the site.
However, Mr Hanafey said there was grass on the site and the top soil had not been removed. He said he had a house in Robertstown when he first applied for planning permission but sold it soon after and sent a solicitors letter to the council notifying them of the sale.
“The whole planning report was full of mistakes,” he contended.
In the planner’s report, the council said it was turning down permission for the two-storey home because it did not comply with local need policy, and the proposed development would exacerbate ribbon development in the area.
An Bord Pleanala noted the local need’s policy “provides that applicants must be able to demonstrate that they are seeking to build their first home in a rural area in County Kildare.”
“I would consider that sufficient information has not been submitted to determine if this is the case, although it is noted that the applicants have previously owned a home in the settlement of Robertstown,” said the inspector.
Kildare County Council said Mr Hanafey asserted his right to appeal the council’s decision to An Bord Pleanala. An Bord Pleanala upheld the council’s decision and refused permission.