Luggala land and access to the countryside

 

Sir, – The future of Luggala is a wake-up call to consider our neglected uplands (Editorial, August 11th). The Irish Uplands Forum supports the acquisition of Luggala by the State but appropriate management of the land is more important.

A European Innovation Partnership project, also managed by the Wicklow Uplands Council, is bringing the award-winning Burren Farming for Conservation Scheme to Wicklow. It should act as a model for land management in Luggala.

This innovative scheme is just one of the many projects promoted by community-based upland development groups (circa 30) throughout the country. A meeting this October in Mulranny (organised by the Irish Uplands Forum with the support of the Heritage Council) on the theme of Innovation through Partnership will provide a networking opportunity for these groups.

Government inaction contrasts with local community concern with sustainable development in our uplands. – Yours, etc,

DR MARY TUBRIDY ,

Research Officer,

Irish Uplands Forum

Palmerstown, Dublin.

Sir, – Keep Ireland Open (KIO) was dismayed to read that keep out signs have been erected at Luggala.

Over many years hill walkers have enjoyed access to the lakes and mountains in this estate excepting the area around Luggala House.

KIO has tried to interest a succession of Ministers in acquiring the land only leaving the house and say 100 acres of land around the house for sale separately. It could well be that potential purchasers could well be more than pleased not to have the responsibility of having to look after the land.

Surely a win-win situation. The land, which is mostly rough mountain land could probably be acquired for around €1.2 million based on the price of €800,000 paid by the State in 2016 for the acquisition of a similar acreage of land in Glenasmole as an extension to the Wicklow National Park.

The possible closure of the estate to recreational users would be a major setback to Wicklow’s efforts to attract visitors both from home and abroad. – Yours, etc,

ROGER GARLAND,

Chairman,

Keep Ireland Open,

Dublin 14.