Councillor Charlie O’Connor, who is Chairman of the Tallaght Area Committee, again raised the issue of the Wetlands at Sean Walsh Park, at the January meeting. He was responding to calls that he is receiving from the community seeking an update on the matter which is of great concern locally.
The CEO provided Charlie O’Connor with a detailed response to his concerns as follows:
“In 2019 the Council engaged a consultant ecologist to assist in carrying out a detailed examination of the site in question at Sean Walsh Memorial Park. This work includes carrying out ecological advice for the surrounding areas of ponds and grasslands as well as the site in question, ecological surveys and providing advice and assessment in relation to the rehabilitation of a habitat and potential to encourage re-colonisation of the area.
This report has been completed and forwarded to the National Parks and Wildlife Services for review. Please see below for an indicative draft plan of works:
- Site investigations to establish depth of water table/nature of water-holding capacity on site and adjacent to site
- Drawing up of Alien Invasive Plan Species Management and Control Plan for the area
- Management and conservation plan for Mentha pulegium
- Habitat rehabilitation plan drawing up and implementation
- Comprehensive ecological baseline survey of area and environs of the site
- Drawing up and implementation of Biodiversity and Habitat Management plan for the survey area and environs
- Ecological Monitoring
SDCC are currently awaiting response from NPWS in order to incorporate any changes / amendments if required. Once report is finalised it will be available. In the interim an Internal Working Group has been set up to review current procedures in relation to in-river, stream and pond maintenance works and review existing guidelines and procedures in relation to same. The first meeting has taken place and current practices were reviewed. The Group is now assessing improvements and national guidance that should be included in SDCC procedures. Further meetings will occur in the coming weeks to finalise the SDCC procedures. In addition; while awaiting a response from National Parks and Wildlife Services; a tender for the above services is being prepared and the topographical survey has been carried out over the winter months and is available when required.”
Charlie O’Connor says that it is important that Council Management understands the concerns of the wider community in respect of this significant issue and he has assured his community that the matter will continue to receive his particular attention.