Saturday 24 March 2007

Land access case coming to head

A High Court Case is to be taken by campaigners against the owners of the Old Head Golf Links in Kinsale over the issue of public access to the historic headland.
Diarmuid O Dalaigh, a member of the Free the Old Head Campaign, has been granted leave by the Attorney general to launch legal proceedings against Ashbourne Holdings Ltd. to establish the existence of a right of way at the Old Head of Kinsale.
‘The issue has been to Court on a number of previous occasions in relation to planning matters or under narrow legal boundaries but this time the right of way issue will itself be tested’, said John Jeffries, a spokesman for the Free the Old Head of Kinsale Campaign, who is confident the case could be won.
We have been building up to this for quite a while. We are very optimistic of a positive outcome. We feel we have a very solid case’, he added.
Mr. Jeffires said the issue was being widely watched throughout Ireland by walking groups and others who had found in recent years that traditional walkways had been blocked off by property owners.
Previous court cases in relation to the Old Head of Kinsale had been based on very narrow parameters, he said. The Free the Old Head campaign, through Diarmuid O Dalaigh, was now bringing this to Court specifically of the right of way matter.
‘We strongly believe that we can win this case and we are presenting a very robust argument before the High Court.’
Basil Hegarty, solicitor for Ashborne Holdings, said the company would defend the action ‘100%’.
‘The company has previously defended its position before Cork County Council, An Taisce, Bord Pleanala, the High Court and the Supreme Court that there are no public rights on the Old Head and we are amazed that this new court action has been taken.’
Ailin Quinlan
© Irish Examiner

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