The under estimation of the local vote
Following last week’s election the people of Roscommon now have three TD’s to represent them. One comes from South Roscommon, the other from East Galway and another from Strokestown, all a good distance from Boyle. It was interesting to hear one of those three elected representatives talking on local radio during the week on what he could do for “his area” and not a mention of this town. The fact is, that on a national level, we now have no political representation in Boyle. Fine Gael, who lost their seat in the constituency, were asleep when it came to the vote People Before Profit candidate Eddie Conroy got in Boyle. He received 480 first preference votes between the five polling booths in the town, votes which may have gone to Maura Hopkins were Eddie out of the race, and could have brought here over the line. Had Fine Gael come up with some form of pre election promise for the town, they would have got more support. They didn’t and they understimated the pulling power of a local candidate and resultantly paid the ultimate price. This election highlighted once again the power of social media. Viewing figures on Boyletoday.com soared on Saturday last when we gave hourly updates and published, within minutes of they becoimg available, the tally results for the Boyle town area. It’s a long way from the seventies and eighties, before the advent of local radio, mobile phone or internet, when one had to go to the local newspaper office late at night to see the handwritten results as they were posted in the window after being phoned in from a telephone box in Roscommon town!
Boyle omitted from Eir broadband announcement
It was a case of “adding salt to the wound” yesterday to hear a technology expert on radio discussing the “exciting” 1Gbs rural digital fibre cable rollout by Eir. The new rollout does not include Boyle but does include Ballyfarnon, Croghan and Cootehall. Carrick on Shannon and Drumshanbo are also on the list. Some areas in Boyle have good broadband while other areas not near the infamous cabinets have unreliable and slow broadband. All of Boyle needs to be included in such announcements by Eir. Hopefully stong representations and protests at our omission will be made to the company.
What would our “Centre Parcs” have been like?
The granting of planning permission for the huge Centre Parcs project in Ballymahon has to be welcomed as it will bring a massive jobs boost to the country. But here in Boyle, there are some who will wonder what it would have been like locally had our “Centre Parcs” project in the form of the “Newfound Project” got the go ahead back in 2005. The Newfound Project planned to build 300 holiday homes, a 100 suite hotel and spa and conference facility and golf course in Lough Key Forest Park. The project received planning permission but An Board Pleanala subsequently overturned the permission leading to the then CEO of the group Brian Dobbin commenting “it appears that a small minority are in control of development planning in Ireland.” Prior to Newfound plans, The Rockfield Corportation were denied planning for a similar type development, a hotel at Doon was refused and a hotel and shopping complex at Mocmoyne was later refused permission. It seemed strange at the time, and still does, how so many developments were refused permission around Boyle. Many asked were there individuals or groups with an interest in seeing no hotel type developments built around the area. If it were true at the time, hopefully that is no longer the case. The debate had died down over the years but has raised it’s head once again in light of the Centre Parcs news.
An ideal location for corporate team building
While we did not get a hotel in Lough Key Forest Park (see story above) what we do have in Boyle is an all weather facility in the Boda Berg quest. The facility has been used by many, many companies for team building, the most recent being Neopost Ireland who were in the Park last week. While Carrick has honed in on stag and hen parties, the scenic beauty and tranquility of Boyle makes it an ideal location for the corporate entertainment market, but we do need the hotel and hopefully there may be word on that soon. The town is waiting for someone to capture the corporate team building market. Think about it. Team building in Boda Berg and Segway, organised cycling trips around the lake, island hoping on Lough Key, a medieval banquet in King House and a pub crawl, (like the Web Summit event) to our many pubs – the possibilities are endless but the opportunity will not be there forever.
Man goes to the doctors with a parrot growing out of the top of his head.
“And how did this start?” says the doc.
“As a pimple on my bum” says the parrot.