North Dublin houses are likely to fall into the sea, TD warns

Independents4Change TD Clare Daly calls for immediate action to protect homes

Independents4Change TD Clare Daly has warned that houses in north Co Dublin are likely to fall into the sea because of a delay in carrying out coastal protection work. File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Houses that are “hanging onto a cliff edge” are likely to fall into the sea because of a delay in carrying out coastal protection work, the Dáil has been warned.

Independents4Change TD Clare Daly made the comments as she called for immediate action to protect a number of houses at Burrow Beach, in Portrane, north Co Dublin.

She said two Ministers had visited the area, including Minister of State for the Office of Public Works (OPW) Seán Canney, who went to the site in February.

Ms Daly said that, despite this, the work had yet to be done.


There is a “critically dangerous and worrying situation of coastal erosion in the area”, she said.

She said the local community was told Fingal County Council had been given money to carry out the work and that it was up to the council to apply for further funding, “but on the other hand, Fingal County Council has said it is not in a position to do anything”.

The Dublin Fingal TD said the impact on the environment of any work had to be considered, but “that cannot outweigh the direct impact on people’s lives and homes.

“They are literally hanging onto a cliff edge there. Do we have to see a house collapse before something is done?”


Minister of State at the Department of Finance Eoghan Murphy said Mr Canney’s office was ready to “work in partnership with” the council on the issue.

He said he would ask Mr Canney to call in the council to see what solution could be found.

Ms Daly said the local authority was responsible for the dune protection work, but “it has not delivered on that”.

Fingal County Council had spent money on a study on coastal protection in 2012 and the OPW approved €200,000 in funding for dune protection work in 2014, but the council did not proceed with the project, Mr Murphy said.

Ms Daly said other TDs were complaining that they could not get money for “dire needs” in their area, while Fingal had funding it was not drawing down.

“It is absolutely ludicrous.”

Fianna Fáil TD Dara Calleary suggested all councils be called in, and if they were not spending money they had been allocated, “it should be taken off them”.

Mr Murphy said they had to ensure the protection work was the right course of action, and a risk management report had shown the proposed solution might not be correct.

Marie O'Halloran

Marie O'Halloran

Marie O'Halloran is Parliamentary Correspondent of The Irish Times