Homeowners in South East Clare ask Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney “not to forget” them

Minister Coveney (right) with locals
Minister Coveney (right) with locals

Homeowners in South East Clare have asked Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney “not to forget” them as he visited the devastated community.

Locals in Springfield who have borne the brunt of the floodwaters have been sopeaking to the Cork TD, who was the first government representative to visit since flood nearly a month ago.

Lisa Griffin asked the Cork TD to save the community, which is situated on the Lower River Shannon downstream from Athlone.

 “If you are going to protect Athlone you are going to wash us away,” Lisa Griffin told Minister Coveney.

“We don’t want you to forget Springfield.”

“We are badly affected. You are going to see it when you go down that road and (the water) is above your waist,” she said.

“We don’t want to be forgotten about, and we don’t want you to start up the country, solving their problems, because it’s going to get worse for us down here,” she said.

Meanwhile, six houses in Athlone Co Westmeath are to be evacuated today  as householders give up a three week battle to keep rising floods from their homes.

According to homes are being evacuated after flood waters breached record 2009 levels in the town and elsewhere on the Shannon and its tributaries on Saturday night.

An estimated 260 homes have now been evacuated including 14 homes in Kilganey on the south bank of the Suir in Clonmel, on Saturday night. A further 230 homes are under immediate threat and some 130 households are marooned by flooded roads and fields.

The Government’s National Co-ordination Group said “virtually” all counties have now been affected by flooding since the series of storms began in early December.

Also, commuters returning to work after the Christmas break have been warned to expect diversions and curtailments of the railway and bus network.