Lochside Garage

Fears rural ratepayers are being ‘forgotten’

FERMANAGH’S rural residents are feeling let down and forgotten about as the county emerges from lockdown, with public facilities in smaller areas among the last to be reopened.
The issue has been highlighted recently in the row over rural recycling centres, with facilities in smaller communities either slow to reopen, such as Roslea, or still remaining closed, such as in Garrison.
“Garrison people think they are the forgotten people reminding me they also pay rates,” said local Cllr Anthony Feely. “I keep telling them the Council is going on government safety lines, but at this stage I think it could be opened at present and let people in one at a time.”
Cllr Feely added he would be urging the Council to reopen the Garrison facility as soon as possible as it was also used by Belcoo residents.
It’s not just about recycling centres, however, according to Brookborough councillor Shemaus Greene, who agreed residents in rural areas of Fermanagh, particularly along the border, felt abandoned. He said he’d been “disappointed” by the Council’s approach to the recycling issue.
“My belief is that rural areas, especially border areas, always seem to be forgotten.
“They’re always the last on the list to be done,” he said, noting 70 percent of the local population were rural dwellers.
“Another issue that is probably going to be a big issue in the coming weeks, and hopefully we won’t get a second wave of this, is in the reopening of the toilet facilities and amenities. I suspect the smaller rural village will be the last.”

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