Call for local law to be made to tackle “illegal” Traveller camps near Naas

Mobile homes near the roundabout on the Naas ring road.

Mobile homes near the roundabout on the Naas ring road.

Demands are being made to make parking on slip roads off the motorway near Johnstown illegal following complaints about encampments in the area.

Now the local authority is to be asked to bring in a bye-law which prohibits parking on these roads.

It’s the latest development in a controversy which has seen Traveller caravans parked adjacent to main roads in Naas, Johnstown and Kill.

At a Kildare County Council area meeting Cllr. Fintan Brett said he had received complaints about parking on slip roads and claimed one of the vehicles was a 2014 registered Mercedes, which he claimed was worth €80,000 “towing a caravan worth €40,000.”

Cllr. Brett added that some Travellers are great community people and live in the area but others take advantage of this.

Cllr. Seamie Moore said some Travellers have houses elsewhere in the country and he said the council has been slow to act because “there is an obligation to provide halting sites.”

There is no halting site in the Naas area - an issue that’s been highlighted by Kildare Traveller Action, which represents Travellers.The KTA has been critical of the council’s failure to address what it sees as an accommodation crisis facing members of the Traveller community. PJ Dooley of the KTA has accused the KCC of being more interested in deploying the resources to evict families from roadside encampments instead of putting these resources into providing accommodation.

Cllr. Paddy McNamara said the council has an obligation to provide halting sites for “genuine Travellers” adding “but they shouldn’t be on the public road.”

He said Travellers are recognised as a minority “but with rights come responsibilities.”




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