Editorial: Portrayal of Naas was unfair and unbalanced

Laura Coates

Reporter:

Laura Coates

Email:

editor@leinsterleader.ie

Editorial: Portrayal of Naas was unfair and unbalanced

Naas town. File picture

The Leinster Leader is taken to task in this week’s Letters page by Cllr Robert Power, Deputy Mayor of Kildare, for a column published in last week’s edition.

We appreciate Cllr Power’s contribution – and we fully accept that his criticism is valid.

The opinion piece in question highlighted a number of unflattering observations about Naas,  including the long abandoned cranes visible along approach roads and the shrinking number of parking spaces in the town.

This newspaper has been reporting and commenting on aspects of local life in Naas and other Kildare towns since 1880. We have celebrated thousands of local  good-news stories in that time. But as Cllr Power accepts, it is also part of the remit of the Leader to ask questions and stimulate debate. Any local newspaper worth reading does the same.

In this case, we got it wrong.    

The column rightly stated, at the outset, that there are many good reasons to move to Naas. However, in seeking to make the point that “snazzy brochures produced to market the town” ignore the less attractive things about Naas, the column focused almost entirely on these negative aspects. That resulted in an unbalanced and unfair portrayal of the town.

Regular readers of the Leader are well aware that the paper has long been a platform for differing views, not least on this page. Criticisms on our part are intended to be constructive – we want the best possible county for those who live in Kildare and those considering a move here.

The paper has been based in Naas for 138 years and throughout that time our journalists have always wanted the best  for the town and its residents. It is part of our job to hold the local authority and other public bodies to account – something we are sure Cllr Power and his colleagues in the Naas Municipal District would accept.

As a trusted local newspaper, it’s also our responsibility to admit when we get something wrong – as we did last week. We apologise for doing so.