Work on €15m Midleton-Youghal Greenway to start next month

Cork County Council hopes amenity will mirror success of the Waterford Greenway

A stretch of the old rail line between Youghal and Midleton which is to be turned into a greenway. Photograph: Denis Minihane

A stretch of the old rail line between Youghal and Midleton which is to be turned into a greenway. Photograph: Denis Minihane

 

Clearance work on the proposed Midleton-Youghal Greenway in East Cork is expected to start in November after the Government approved €8 million in funding, Cork County Council has confirmed.

According to Cork County Council, clearance work along the 23kms route of the former Midleton to Youghal rail line will start in November.

This will be followed by detailed design and it is anticipated construction will start in late spring 2020, with construction taking two and a half years.

The project received planning approval earkier this year and the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport has since allocated €8 million to the project which is expected to cost €15 million.

Cork County Council said the old railway corridor, which included stops at Mogeely and Killeagh, is adjoined by a mixture of residential, agricultural, commercial and community property.

“Letters will issue shortly to the registered land owners of these properties, outlining next steps and requesting contact details to facilitate communication in the roll out of the project,” the council said in a statement.

According to the council, an ecologist will carry out a walk-through visual survey over the coming weeks and any Japanese knotweed identified will be dealt with.

The former rail line between Midleton and Youghal opened in 1860 with daily passenger services operating until 1963 before they were reduced to a summer Sunday service which ran until 1987.

Iarnród Éireann maintained freight services from Cork to Youghal for another year before it ceased.

Although the line has not been used since the company retained ownership of the line, save for one encroachment near Killeagh.

Last June, Cork County Council chief executive Tim Lucey welcomed the approval of €8 million in funding from the department which he said was key to kick-starting the project.

According to the council, the new greenway has the potential to attract 250,000 visitors annually and mirror the success of the Waterford Greenway which has provided a huge boost to the local economy.