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Consultation is to be held between the West Clare Municipal District and the National Trails Office before a busy North Clare route can be declared as public.

An appeal was issued by Cllr Joe Killeen (FF) for the roadway off the R480 past the entrance to the Aillwee Cave, past Ballycahill and towards Townross to be taken in charge by the local authority.

Senior executive engineer with the West Clare MD, Enda MacNamara noted that the road was part of the Sport Ireland National Trails Ballyvaughan Loop. He said that the consultation would be held with National Trails “to understand the implications of declaring this road public as it may have a negative impact on the trail. Funding may be available through sources available to Sport Ireland National Trails to upgrade this section of road where required”.

Cllr Killeen highlighted that it was “an extremely busy tourist and walking route”. He interpreted the response as one which aimed to determine if making the road public would reduce the likelihood to attract funding.

Cathaoirleach of the West Clare MD, Cllr Joe Garrihy (FG) seconded the motion while seconds later a dog was heard barking in the background of the virtual meeting leading Cllr Cillian Murphy (FF) to comment “does that take woof woof and bow wow to a new level” in reference to a long-running critique by Cllr PJ Kelly (FF).

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