Council blitz on bonfire material being collected

By Aideen O'Flaherty

SOUTH Dublin County Council will deploy “all available resources” to aid in the removal of bonfire material in the county in the run-up to Halloween, while the Kilnamanagh Neighbourhood Watch group recently handed out leaflets to local businesses and residents about the damage caused by bonfires.

The local authority outlined its plans for tackling the issue of bonfires in the county at Monday’s monthly meeting of the council.

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Council workers and Gardai removing bonfire material last year

The council stated that their public realm section has already commenced clearing away stockpiled bonfire material that has been reported to them, and that this will continue throughout the remainder of this month, and a clean-up will also take place following Halloween.

Fianna Fáil councillor for Tallaght Central, Charlie O’Connor, who raised the issue at the meeting, told The Echo: “We don’t want to stop people enjoying Halloween – we want to stop the damage to our public open spaces.

“It needs to be a partnership between South Dublin County Council, the gardai and the community, to ensure that everything is done properly.

“Last year we had a good deal of success in controlling bonfire activity, and we’re trying to do that again this year.

“Halloween is an occasion of celebration, but the negative stuff that goes on, and the anti-social behaviour, we can do without that.”

The council will be implementing a number of measures to deal with the issue, including a door-to-door WEEE collection prior to Halloween by RecycleIT, a Halloween pack including information and activity sheets will be made available to all schools, Halloween Recycle workshops will be carried out in schools, and the Bulbs Not Bonfires scheme will also be running.

Last week, the Kilnamanagh Neighbour-hood Watch group put together leaflets for residents and local businesses, urging them not to supply or leave out material that could be used for bonfires, and to report instances of material being stockpiled for a bonfire.

Last Halloween, the total cost of the council’s clean-up leading up to and following the festivities totalled €138,940, and the council collected 522.9 tonnes of waste within the same time period.

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