COUNCILLOR PETER COYLE, Fingal County Council, Ireland
Peter Coyle welcomes you to his website. In June 2009, Peter was re-elected a County Councillor on Fingal County Council, representing the Howth-Malahide Electoral Area. Peter held the prestigious position of Cathaoirleach (Chairman) of the Dublin Regional Authority in 2011.. This is the representative body of all four Dublin local authorities.
Peter served as Deputy Mayor of Fingal for 2010-2011. He also served as Cathaoirleach (Chairperson/Mayor) of Fingal Council for the year 2004-2005.
Blue Flag for Portmarnock in 2013?
New Criteria and standards are going to make it difficult for beaches to reach Blue Flag standard in 2013. The Blue Flag Award for beaches is an international programme operated by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) and works towards sustainable development at beaches and marinas through compliance with 32 criteria under the following headings -
· Environmental Education and Information
In Ireland An Taisce manage the Blue Flag for FEE.
Fingal County Council's Principal Environmental Health Officer, George Sharpson, confirmed that the results were of an exceptional high standard. A new EU Directive on bathing water quality is setting new standards. Although the Directive does not come into full operation until 2015, the standards set are being implemented for Blue Flag purposes by FEE (and in turn An Taisce).
In relation to a Blue Flag for Portmarnock in 2013, this issue has not been fully resolved. The key issue is the water quality results from 2009 to 2012, and the variation in those results. 2011 and 2012 had exceptionally good results. There was a major flooding event in Dublin on July 2nd 2009, which impacted on the water quality result for that date. Fingal Co Council could have asked for that result to be disregarded (the local authority applied for and got derogation for Donabate for the same date). However because it was the only bad result in 2009, Portmarnock did not need derogation for that day because it qualified under the old system for that year. However the actual poor result on that date brings down the overall result for the four years, under the new rules. Ignoring the result of 2nd July 2009, Portmarnock is within the '95 percentile' as defined in the new rules. If derogation for that date is accepted, Portmarnock will be the only beach qualifying for a Blue Flag in Fingal in 2013.
Under the new rules, it appears that Malahide will lose the possibility of ever achieving a Blue Flag again. Irish Water Safety (IWS) recently carried out a Risk Assessment at Malahide Beach. Due to the dangerous currents associated particularly with the channel situated to the north of the beach, there is a permanent prohibition on swimming at Malahide Beach, with a Red Flag flying at all times during the bathing season. In light of this, IWS has recommended that Malahide beach should not be a designated bathing area. As a result Malahide will not be identified as a bathing water area in the future and will no longer be eligible to apply for Blue Flag. The Beach however will continue to have a lifeguard base.
Call for Local Flooding
Problems to be addressed
Cllr Peter Coyle has been to the forefront in calling for urgent action to address local flooding problems, particularly associated with the local rivers including:
Fingal Flood Risk Management Study
Flooding from rivers and/or sea is a major factor impacting
on the general Malahide Electoral Area. A major study (FEM FRAMS) has
been undertaken to address problems that have already occurred and potential
raise existing defences and flood defence
Malahide (Bissets Strand/The Green)
defence embankments, walls and
Kinsealy Court (Gaybrook Stream)
The views of stakeholders and the general public are highly
important in this process and were sought throughout the study.
Future Cemetery Provision needs new Strategy and Legislation
A planning application for a new private cemetery and crematorium
in Balgriffin raised a number of issues for the Dublin region that need
addressing according to local Labour Councillor Peter Coyle. "The
construction of cemeteries should not be the business of speculators or
short term profiteering", according to Peter.
Proposed Portmarnock Scout and Girl Guide Den
The development adjacent to the Portmarnock Sports and
Leisure Centre comprises of scout and guide halls, meeting room, kitchen,
office, store, toilets and outside assembly area together with Public
Toilets and Council Ranger's office and all associated site works including
access for emergency vehicles and the upgrade of existing woodland trail
to provide pedestrian access from Blackwood Lane.
The Portmarnock Scout and Girl Guide Groups, who have a very professional team, entered into partnership with Fingal Co Council to deliver this project. Fingal Co Council provided a lease on the land, as well as architectural support to the project.
Funding of €350,000 was provided formally to Fingal Co Council specifically
for this project by Sherman Oaks Ltd as a community project contribution
in association with the South Portmarnock Local Area Plan (LAP). The Portmarnock
Scout and Girl Guide Groups are funding the balance of the project.
The Red Squirrel population on the Howth peninsula is the last stronghold and viable population of Red Squirrels in Dublin. This population is under threat of extinction by the invasion of the grey squirrel, according to local Labour Councillor Peter Coyle. It is well known that the grey squirrel has decimated the existence of the native red squirrel in east Ireland. Unlike Red Squirrel populations elsewhere in Dublin, those on Howth could possibly be protected due to the natural narrow entry corridor for squirrel movement at Sutton Cross. Control in this area would prevent future invasion. Fingal County Council wishes to set up a project with the aim of removing the Grey Squirrels from the Howth peninsula by means of a trapping regime. This project would also include the preparation of a report with recommendations on habitat improvements for the Red Squirrel in the various woodland areas on the peninsula. The project is subject to funding approval from the Heritage Council, which will report back in February next year on the success of the application. According to Cllr Peter Coyle, who raised the issue at a recent Council meeting, the protection of the red squirrel population is important for the heritage of Howth, Fingal and the Dublin region, and he hopes that the project will get appropriate support.
Malahide Marina Residents Shocked by
An Bord Pleanála's Decision
Malahide Marina Residents are very disappointed with An
Bord Pleanála's Decision to Grant Permission for the change in
use of the 'Fragrance House' factory to retail units that include Off-license,
fast food outlet, and outdoor market stalls. Fingal County Council had
originally refused Permission. An Bord Pleanála overturned Fingal's
Observations had been submitted to An Bord Pleanála by Malahide Marina Village Management Company Ltd and by Cllr Peter Coyle opposing the development.
Cllr Peter Coyle states that he is most disappointed with the Condition relating to the proposed off-license and fast food outlet.
It is noted that the Inspector in his Report stated:
"It is my recommendation that given market stalls
are accommodated elsewhere
The Inspector recommended that Condition No 2 (b) should
The Board did not accept this recommendation from their own Inspector, and changed it to:
"(b) The off-licence use and hot food take-away use
shall be ancillary to
Cllr Peter Coyle asks how the Board can plausibly state
that this Condition is "In the interest of protecting the residential
amenities of the area."
An Bord Pleanála refuses Aldi Store for Portmarnock
Councillor Peter Coyle has welcomed the refusal by An Bord Pleanála for an Aldi store on the scenic coastal location of the White Sands Hotel, Portmarnock. In March, Fingal Co Council had granted permission for a store. Cllr Coyle was extremely critical of that decision, and led a campaign to overturn it by Appeals to An Bord. There was major outrage amongst the general public about the decision. Cllr Peter Coyle (Cathaoirleach of Fingal Co Council in 2005 during the adoption of the current Development Plan) had stated that planning permission at the White Sands Hotel site was clearly contrary to the objectives of the County Development Plan, and had appealed to the Manager on a number of occasions to become directly involved in the case, given that he was Director of Planning during the adoption of the Development Plan.
Now An Bord Pleanála has endorsed Cllr Coyle's position. They
have given detailed reasons summed up by:
Cllr Peter Coyle had stated all along that the zoning and the Local Objective shown in the 2005 Development Plan for this site was miss-interpreted. There is no reference to a Suburban Centre at this location in the Written Statement of the 2005-2011 County Development Plan.
Cllr Peter Coyle is pleased that the points raised in the six Appeals by himself, the Portmarnock Community Association, RGDATA, and three other locals, have been accepted by the Board. Common sense has prevailed.
Old Portmarnock Graveyard is in Fingal Co Council ownership
After much debate over years about the ownership of the
Old graveyard in Portmarnock (adjacent to the Portmarnock Hotel Golf Links),
new evidence indicates that Fingal Co Council has inherited ownership.
This evidence has been brought forward by the National Monument Service
in the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government.
DAA Defies new Noise Control Plan
Dublin Airport Authority is defying new EU Directives and
proposed new national Noise Regulations in their proposed application
for a change in two Planning Conditions associated with the proposed new
major Runway, according to Labour Councillor Peter Coyle. He is calling
on the DAA not to proceed with their Planning Application to allow for
unlimited night-time flying. This will adversely impact on local communities
and cause sleep deprivation and is not sustainable, according to the local