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Locals in Claregalway not happy with new cemetery location

The proposed new cemetery site for Claregalway has been described by one local councillor as too far outside the village to work.

Cllr David Collins is one of those behind a long-running lobby for a new graveyard, given that the current facility is almost full to capacity – but finding a suitable site has proven difficult until now.

However, in recent weeks, it has emerged that a site has been acquired in Cregboy, close to Whiriskey Refrigeration, which would provide around 290 new plots – but with limited car parking spaces.

That doesn’t work for several locals including Cllr Collins, who said he had always campaigned for the extension to the existing cemetery, which has been the subject of flooding.

Recent meetings of the Athenry-Oranmore Municipal Council heard that the existing cemetery was nearly full to capacity, and it was a crisis situation.

Cllr Collins has stated that the ideal scenario would be an extension to the existing cemetery – but officials said this may not be an option, for several reasons.

Site investigation works have taken place at lands adjacent to the existing graveyard, but ground conditions and sight lines are a concern for Galway County Council.

It has now emerged that lands acquired by Galway County Council for a new cemetery are so far out of the village the locals have deemed them “inappropriate”.

The ongoing campaign for the provision of a new burial ground in Claregalway has been discussed at local authority meetings with a site now having been identified as part of the new County Development Plan.

Galway County Council want to locate it on a site opposite the church in the village while local councillors want it adjacent to the existing cemetery which is a half mile away.

Senior Executive Engineer Valerie Loughnane has identified the most suitable site for the new cemetery in Claregalway which she says is located within the speed limits.

She said that it was one of the most attractive pieces of ground available to the Council given that it would have pedestrian access from the local church in Claregalway.

Ms Loughnane explained that one of the reasons for the location of the new cemetery was that new residents could bury their loved ones there and visit the graveyard on a daily basis.

The senior official said that the new cemetery would be provided on community lands that could be visited by loved ones in a safe manner.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

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