Scrambler situation is getting out of control say residents

By Aideen O'Flaherty

A CONCERNED parent has branded damage to a playing pitch in Ballycragh last week as result of someone on a scrambler bike as “disgusting”, while a councillor has stated that South Dublin County Council is “falling short” on tackling the issue with scramblers in Bancroft.

The Echo has reported extensively on issues with scramblers and quads in the area, however the issue shows no sign of abating.

Pitch 2 1

The playing pitch wrecked by a scrambler in Ballycragh Park. 

 

A concerned parent, who wants to remain anonymous, contacted The Echo after a playing pitch in Ballycragh Park, that is used by Firhouse Carmel Football Club, was damaged last Wednesday evening as a result of someone on a scrambler bike gaining access to the park.

The parent, whose son plays for Firhouse Carmel FC, told The Echo: “It’s disgusting that there’s no repercussions for young lads on bikes who are doing this – and that guards’ hands are tied as well.

“It’s very annoying. The pitches are used by hundreds of kids every weekend, and they got destroyed by a reckless young lad.

“It’s getting to the stage where [the issue with scramblers] is getting out of control.”

The parent added that South Dublin County Council carried out work to restore the pitch in advance of last weekend’s matches.

Issues with scramblers are also frustrating residents in Bancroft, according to Sinn Féin councillor for Tallaght Central, Cora McCann.

Cllr McCann said: “Residents in Bancroft feel that SDCC have forgotten about them and are falling short on tackling the use of scramblers and quads in the area, and issues of criminality associated with this.

“The local residents’ association called to doors in the area and received over 180 signatures requesting that the council install kissing gates on the walkway between Bancroft close and Castle Park. 

“This area is used as a drive-thru and is a serious danger to local residents’ safety, as a lot of young children play in Bancroft Close and Castle Park. 

“One local resident who challenged a couple of men flying around in the area was circled by these thugs, who threatened to ‘burn him out’.”

Cllr McCann added: “Although SDCC have followed through with some of the works they committed to doing, a lot more needs to be done.

At next month’s Area Committee Meeting I will be requesting that suitable measures be taken to support the residents of Bancroft and Castle Park.

“These are older areas of Tallaght in which a lot of residents are retired. It is our duty to assure them that we are supporting them and will do what we can to prioritise their safety.”

Scramblers were also a pressing topic at last week’s monthly meeting of the Tallaght Area Committee, with Solidarity councillor Kieran Mahon submitting a question in relation to scramblers in Bancroft Park, while Sinn Féin councillor Cathal King submitted a question about scramblers in Dodder Valley Park.

In response to Cllr Mahon’s question about Bancroft Park, the council stated, in part, that: “It was agreed that fencing would be erected at the entrance into the park at Westpark gym off the Greenhills Road. 

“The matter has been examined further and it is estimated that approximately 120 metres of fencing is required at this location along with a number of kissing gates on pathways. 

“Funding has been provided in the Capital Works programme in 2019 for this work and a tender process has now commenced to procure the fencing works.

“At the meeting on site a number of entrances to the park were examined where scramblers are gaining access across low gates and railings, such as at Bancroft Close/Castle Park and at Tymon North Gardens. 

“It was agreed that railings and gates would be raised at these locations and these works have been included in the tender process mentioned above.”

In response to Cllr King’s question about scramblers in Dodder Valley Park, the council stated: “A commitment has been given that this matter will be addressed and provision has now been made in the council’s Public Realm Improvement Works Programme 2019 for the necessary works to be carried out.  

“This will involve the closing of gaps left in the wall which forms the new entrance at Seskin View Road, as well as similar works which are required at entrances to the park from Old Bawn Road. 

“A tender process is underway at present to procure the necessary works.”

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