Anita Guidera in the Irish Indo' writes of how plans to extend the runway of a regional airport into a pristine bay have encountered unexpected turbulence.
The proposed €5m extension to the runway of Sligo airport at Strandhill will see the construction of a 270m platform onto the mudflats at Dorrins Bay, on its eastern end.
But locals claim that the development will destroy a safe recreational and bathing area as well as wiping out a nature reserve and bird sanctuary and ruining the livelihoods of several shellfish farmers.
They also fear that if the plans go ahead, it will lead to the reclamation of further tracts of shore for industrial development.
"It is a complete and total disaster.
"This place is the most beautiful of all God's creation and if we let this go ahead it will be gone for ever," said Frank Martyn, chairman of the Strandhill Development Association.
The application, which has been the subject of an Environmental Impact Assessment, now rests with Sligo County Council and residents have until next week to lodge submissions.
They are being called to a public meeting due to take place on Thursday night to discuss the plans and possible alternatives.