Does Kerry have a planning system?

Home Forums Ireland Does Kerry have a planning system?

Viewing 36 reply threads
  • Author
    • #707338

      The article in Todays Irish Times about the de-listing of an regionally important ‘Quarry House’ against the advice of independent architectural consultants is latest in a string of very funny (smells not humour) decisions there this year.

      The full article listed some of the buildings that the quarry supplied slates to very important buildings including the houses of parliment in westminister.

      This buyilding is being removed to make way for a tourist attraction, but if these people studied their own market they would realise that people travel here to visit this type of heritage.

      This follows on from the wholesale adoption of section 140 planning permissions prior to the local elections at which despite advice from professional planners not one councillor opposed any of the motions. The other good thing about Kerry is its natural heritage which these type of decisions are destroying, make no mistake most of these section 140s related to areas of outstanding natural beauty.

      This is set against the background of Jackie Healy Rae insisting on the County to be included in the list of counties put forward for objective one grant status in 1998 despite the fact that it was one of the wealthiest counties in Ireland.

      I have just one question, what is going on down there? :confused:

      Any chance of a poll?

    • #745969
      Paul Clerkin

      what optional answers would you like?

    • #745970

      Recent quote I heard (not on planning), “it’s accepted worldwide… and in some parts of Kerry!”.

      Think that describes the situation there.

    • #745971

      Sorry to be so long getting back.

      I would really appreciate a poll with the following five options

      1. It functions perfectly; it gives people what they want.

      2. Like all other systems mistakes are made.

      3. It is worse than most

      4. Chaos and should be changed or supervised by DOE

      5. No opinion

    • #745972
      Paul Clerkin
    • #745973

      Thanks Paul,

      It really is a bit of a Kerry joke, and as they say the craic is getting expensive these days both to heritage and financially.

      It is time to scrap the McDonalds big mac index for cost comparison and bring in the Heineken index to see the real cost of hospitality on a comparative basis.

    • #745974

      Shock! – never expected those results…

      Carry it out in Killarney and see what you get 🙂

    • #745975

      I know what you mean Graham,

      I never expected 95% Joke/Chaos, albiet from a small sample I think most professionals are annoyed that they slave away for hours to get all the angles covered in pursuit of quality when in other places all that is required is a nod and a wink.

      I am not so sure about the results in Killarney being a direct polar opposite from these however. I am absolutely sure that not everyone who sought councillor assistance in relation to planning received it. I would say it was more a case of a few ‘freinds being looked after’. Whilst everyone must live with devalued visual amaenity and blatent traffic hazards.

      There is also a local affinity with local heritage buildings, everyone loves to talk about how important their area is on the basis of particular buildings. This is particularly accentuated when the buildings represent ‘industrial heritage’.

    • #745976

      Agreed. I have heard many Kerry people in the media inraged at what is happening in their county
      At the same time, decent planning, architecture, conservation etc all are issues that people tend to think are only represented in landmark projects or buildings, and tend not percieve these areas as extending to everyday development or one’s own development in a local area.
      I must admit to not having partaken in in your poll though, simply because I know nothing of planning in Kerry and haven’t been there for about 12 years now. So whereas the evidence suggested here and elsewhere indicates that there are ‘issues’ in the county that would help in forming an opinion on the matter similar to what the poll says, I cannot judge for myself. Yet.

    • #745977

      Whether or not there is a real problem, there is a real image problem – the planning system in Kerry is being portrayed as being in disarray. Fairly damning results.

    • #745978
      Paul Clerkin

      from Radio Kerry

      Tuesday 28th of September 2004 04:37 pm

      Website criticises Dungeail House decision
      An architecture website has severely criticised Kerry Councillors for the decision to delist Dungeail House in Valentia. The unanimous decision was taken against the advice of planners, independent consultants and heritage bodies. Dungeil House is a 19th century structure which has fallen into disrepair. The motion to delist paves the way for demolition and a redevelopment of the site.

      Following the vote, Irish architecture dot com began a survey which finds that Kerry’s planning system is in chaos. 35 per cent of people visiting the site said the system is at best a joke and 55 per cent suggest it is in chaos and should be changed. One suggestion is that the Department of the Environment should take control of planning in Kerry. The website makes the point that the system has to be run by trained professionals and local representatives should not be connected with it in any way. None of the people polled found that the the system functions perfectly.

    • #745979


      Someone finally has expressed a preference that the Kerry planning system works perfectly, only 90% of those expressing an opinion felt it was a joke or in chaos.

    • #745980
      Paul Clerkin

      in The Kerryman this week….

      Kerry’s mayor attacks architects

      By Aidan O’Connor

      MAYOR of Kerry Ned O’Sullivan has defended the role of local councillors in the planning process and hit out at architects, claiming that “they have an awful lot to answer for”.

      Mayor O’Sullivan launched a scathing attack on architects after an online centre for architecture found that over 55 per cent of people in Kerry feel that the planning system is in chaos and should be supervised by a government department.

      These findings come from a poll held on the internet by, after county councillors in Kerry unanimously decided to delist an early 19th-century house at Valentia – against the advice of planners and consultants. asked readers: “Does Kerry have a planning system?” and published their response on September 27 last.

      Results found that 0 per cent of people found that the planning system functions perfectly and gives people what they want. A total of 8.87 per cent of respondents felt that, like all other systems, mistakes are made, while 35.47 per cent felt that it is worse than most planning systems, and a Kerry joke. Over 55 per cent of people described the system as chaotic and felt it should be changed or supervised by the Department of the Environment. Just 0.49 per cent of respondents held no opinion.

      Mayor O’Sullivan defended the planning system in Kerry and said that the website which contained the findings of the survey did not belong to any established architectural organisation.

      “Architects have an awful lot to answer for,” he said, claiming that many of the worst aspects of planning are attributed to architects and their designs.

      He went on to say that, as in the case of Dungail House in Valentia, jut because a building is old does not mean that it has to be preserved.

      In relation to suggestions that councillors should have nothing to do with the planning process, Mayor O’Sullivan said that regulations provided that councillors only have limited powers and functions when it comes to planning. He said that these powers were adequate, and only as good as the way individual councillors used them.

      He acknowledged that some councillors had abused their planning powers in recent months, particularly with the use of Section 140 motions which gives councillors the power to force Kerry County Council to reverse a planning decision against the advice of its own planners.

    • #745981

      With 2,194 members archiseek is without question the only real online resource of any note in the urban design and architecture field. In my opinion it is the best resource in the entire area of built environment and as a frequent visitor to this board I feel that this site is moderated and supervised without favour to anyone or group.

      To blame architects for the worst excesses in planning is ludicrous, as Tony Reddy the President of the RIAI has said “(he) is unable to process 88% of complaints to his professional body”

      The reason being that all of these projects have had no input by a qualified architect, I am also sure that of the remaining 12% the vast bulk of the complaints would relate to project management issues and other financial issues as opposed to matters concerning urban design or planning.

      The definitive ruling is Childs vs Wicklow Co Co supreme court 1992 the responsibilities of a County Manager are to the proper planning and development of the area.

      Section 140s and dissmissal of professional reports paid for by the taxpayer are not an acceptable situation.

    • #745982
      Paul Clerkin

      This is starting to piss me off a little. On Tuesday, September 28, this “journalist” dropped me an email, looking for contact. I replied, briefly, with a “How can we help you?”. No response after that. Obviously he had already decided on his approach – bash an architect week.

      I’m tempted to write a letter to the paper, pointing out that as the site is read by journalists and politicians, it can be said to reach both the opinion-makers and the policy-makers of the country.

    • #745983

      Originally posted by RIAI President
      President Announces Development of Client’s Charter
      Need for registration of title ‘architect’ highlighted by fact that up to 80% of complaints to RIAI relate to unqualified practitioners.

      Development of country’s suburbs needs to be prioritised over next 10 years

      The President of the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland (RIAI), Tony Reddy, tonight (Wednesday, 2 June) announced that the Institute has decided to develop a Client’s Charter. Mr Reddy said that this is part of the RIAI’s contribution to ensuring that there is an adequate and appropriate regulatory framework to assure the client, the user and society at large of a minimum level of quality.

      In this context, Tony Reddy highlighted the fact that up to 80% of the complaints received by the RIAI on an annual basis relate to unqualified practitioners.

      “The construction sector must ensure that the services, products and finished buildings it delivers meet consumers’ requirements and that the life cycle costing of their investment is correctly balanced in economical, social and environmental terms. Government must ensure that there is an adequate and appropriate regulatory framework to assure the client, the user and society at large of a minimum level of quality.

      “Issues such as registration, commercial communications, professional indemnity insurance, ethics and the resources needed to provide a good product, deserve particular attention. Providing information to clients and consumers on what to expect of the architect is also very important, as is the need to ensure that architects develop their competencies through continued professional development. With all this in mind, the RIAI has recently begun to formally develop a Client’s Charter to further enhance its consumer protection policies.”

      Tony Reddy pointed out, that as with most professional organisations, the RIAI also works as a mediator between clients and member architects when things go wrong.

      “However, up to 80% of the complaints received by the RIAI on an annual basis relate to unqualified practitioners. The RIAI is unable to assist in situations such as this and it is clear from the range of these complaints that the consumer’s interest is not adequately protected by existing legislation in Ireland.

      “Again, the simplest way to minimise the fall-out from inadequate practitioners is to ensure that the architect is duly registered and regulated by a professional organisation. The clients can then seek information on fees, standard contracts and conditions, scope of the architect’s services, and can look to that organisation for redress, should the architect fail in his/her duties to the client.”

      Mr Reddy explained that this form of registration, which is currently lacking in Ireland, poses real risks to consumers, in particular in relation to life and property. However, he said that the RIAI expects the issue to be addressed shortly in the context of the Government’s proposed Building Control Bill.

      “Regulation of the architectural profession in most developed states is primarily aimed at securing quality in the built environment and protecting the consumer. Obviously, architects’ services affect not only the client who commissions a project but also the community within which the project is built. This impact on the community is felt not only in the present but also far into the future. It is for this reason that, when regulating the profession, government must ensure that both the client’s interests and the short and long-term interests of society are carefully safeguarded.

      “That is a very delicate responsibility and the open market has only a limited effectiveness as a safety mechanism in this domain. The simplest way to ensure that the architect is this kind of service provider is to have a registration system. Registration of title exists in most EU countries, the United States, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, where there are regulatory regimes, which promote competition law. The fundamental principle underpinning the registration of architects in these countries is that government sets standards and qualifications to protect the consumer and ensures, through competition and antitrust laws, the operation of a free market in the provision of services.”

      Tony Reddy then went on to address the issue of the development of the country’s suburbs, pointing out that while there have been many successes in the past decade in terms of developing our towns and cities, there is still much recent development in our cities and towns which is of poor quality. In particular, the suburban landscape and the badly landscaped, mean-spirited housing estates are clearly set to be an unfortunate legacy of our era.

      “In the suburban areas of all of our cities and towns there are areas where little thought appears to have been given to concepts such as urbanism and place making. This is a very serious problem, which we share with our European partners, and will be given particular emphasis during my term of office as President. I believe it is in the suburbs that all the next major breakthroughs in architecture will occur.

      “It is currently estimated that up to 76,000 new homes will be built in Ireland this year, with similar rates expected up to 2010 to meet with anticipated demand. While an amount of this will be built on ‘brownfield’ sites where many architects see the best opportunities, the majority will be built on the edges of our towns and cities, where I feel the real challenges lie. Either way, it represents an important challenge to society and should be seen as an exciting opportunity for Irish architects, urban designers and planners to build successful and sustainable communities, which may in turn become models for town extensions elsewhere,” Tony Reddy concluded.

      RIAI 2 Jun 2004

      It is obvious the Mayor of Kerry hasn’t a clue what he is on about: typical of a particular mindset to simply lash out rather than deal with issues.

      In fairness to the Journalist the relevant quote is

      Originally posted by The Kerryman Mayor O’Sullivan defended the planning system in Kerry and said that the website which contained the findings of the survey did not belong to any established architectural organisation. [/B]

      Which appears to be solely attributable to Ned, I really like the article it really allowed Ned to hang himself:

      Originally posted by Ned He acknowledged that some councillors had abused their planning powers in recent months, particularly with the use of Section 140 motions which gives councillors the power to force Kerry County Council to reverse a planning decision against the advice of its own planners. [/B]

      In other words abuse of the executive function in Kerry is open to abuse under his management.
      It was

    • #745984

      Frank Corcoran of An Taisce is on the week in politics tonight at 11 20pm on RTE the only One

    • #745985

      All the schmuck politicians lined up on the panel saying they think rules for one off housing need to be relaxed.

      Regardless of how they actually feel, all politicians know the popular thing to do is speak in favour of one off housing. It’s pathetic!

    • #745986

      A laughable display of populisim – really quite embarrassing to watch. One after the other, as regular as clockwork.

    • #745987


      Talking on the issue of no respect did anyone see the news on the 60 seals hacked to death by Kerry Fishermen this week, it appears they have no respect for anything down there, be it creatures, landscapes or historical buildings.

    • #745988

      @Dubliner wrote:


      Talking on the issue of no respect did anyone see the news on the 60 seals hacked to death by Kerry Fishermen this week, it appears they have no respect for anything down there, be it creatures, landscapes or historical buildings.


      As thread starter I would ask you to be more restrained in your comments towards Kerry people on this thread, I agree that the incident off Great Blasket is a digrace that hasn’t seen equal since a similar incident occured in the 1980’s a few counties north of here on that I think everyone will agree. But to equate bad planning oversight by the county manager & corrupt interventions by some local politicians with the senseless murder of defenceless animals is way OTT.

      The planning system needs to function in Kerry with the professional planners being allowed to perform their duties to the best of their abilities unimpeded by parochial minded clientist politicians. But I wouldn’t lump the two issues together, they are guilty of enough as it is.

    • #745989

      @Archiseek News wrote:

      Kerry council to offer planning service
      Archiseek / Ireland / News / 2005 / January 8
      The Irish Times

      Kerry County Council is to offer a new “on-site pre-planning service” in an attempt to free up planning for one-off houses on family-owned lands. The development is part of an agreement between the county manager, Mr Martin Riordan, and councillors. There has been bitter division between most councillors and management in Kerry over planning in rural areas. Until recently, council meetings have been dominated by motions from councillors directing the manager to grant permission, often against the advice of planners and engineers.

      © Copyright 1996-2005

      I wonder will it come to anything, or just constitue another layer to be bypassed?

    • #745990

      Did anyone see the article in Today’s Irish Times on the 4,500 applications submitted for one off houses in Kerry since this service was introduced. Appaerntly the 4,500 houses are a multiple of the number of ‘rural housing needs’ for the next decade. The article also went on to display the costs of these houses on the Kerry County Council Budget.

      It is obvious that the hue and cry raised by particular political elements had little to do with a few hard luck cases but a lot more to do with selling sites with FPP to tourists. Current site values in the prime-r areas of South Kerry with the benefit of FPP now exceed 350k

    • #745991
      Paul Clerkin

      ‘Serial objectors’ face fee hike for planning challenges
      The Irish Independent

      A Register of ‘serial objectors’ to one-off rural housing is likely to be set up in Kerry. This follows a unanimous decision by council members to ask Environment Minister Dick Roche for a 10-fold increase in the cost of fees for anyone objecting to a development outside of their local electoral area. The same small number of names consistently turns up on planning files objecting to developments and making observations on one-off rural housing, councillors claim.

    • #745992
      Andrew Duffy

      Mr Sheahan said An Taisce, too, had “overstepped its remit”.

      “They will object to a one-off house, but a small distance away where there’s a big development, there will not be a word,” he said.

      translation – “I have completely missed the point”.

    • #745993

      typical kerry county council speak
      It makes me want to cry
      surely these ‘serial objectors’ have a democratic right to object
      to the plague of one-off housing (and large scale housing
      developments if they so wish)which is gradually destroying
      The councillors are going to keep on pushing through planning
      applications for spanish style haciendas and grecian villas ,as well
      as suburban style housing estates around small towns, you name it
      and by raising the cost of lodging an objection actually attempting to barr
      people from objecting! its a joke.
      Im from kerry myself and its quite incredible to see whats going on
      down there. Most people even the ‘serial objectors’ I would say are at
      this stage pretty apathetic, it seems that the councillors dont even
      recognice the need to control development particularly in scenic and
      rural areas.
      Killarney town and its environs are particularly shocking.
      If the right to object to this state of affairs is made more expensive
      or a sort of ‘hit list’ of ‘serial objectors’ is introduced (presumably deeming
      these peoples objections to be merely part of some personal agenda
      and not worthy of recognition), then where will it end. They may as
      well do away with the planning system and any kind of open and public
      system for its regualtion, have personal applications to councillors for
      one’s own one off house. That would cut out all the hassle …

    • #745994

      The measure is the equivalant to that of an outright ban on objections themselves for most people – certainly that is the effect intended.

      Has this not yet been addressed by Europe – didn’t they decry any charge for making an objection as unlawful and that the Govt would be retracting the current standard €20 charge, let alone this outrageous proposal?

    • #745995

      To be honest this doesn’t surpise or bother me one bit,

      we know all the commentators involved and we know their backgrounds and their motivation, I’m sure Dick Roche will just ignore it if he doesn’t this serial garden cleaner will just clean something else.

    • #745996

      Probe into alleged ethics breach in Killarney
      Monday, 26 March 2007 16:42
      The Standards in Public Office Commission has begun a public investigation into alleged ethics breaches by two Killarney town councillors.

      The hearing is the first of its kind.

      Both councillors, Fianna Fáil’s Pat O’Donoghue and Mayor of Killarney Sheila Casey of Fine Gael, have denied the allegations.

      The hearing is being led by former High Court Judge Matthew P Smith, who is the Chairman of the Standards in Public Office Commission.

      The two councillors are facing investigation over the rezoning of 20 acres of land belonging to Mr O’Donoghue’s family.

      The O’Donoghues own the Gleneagle and Brehon Hotels in Killarney.

      Shiela Casey is an employee of Patrick O’Donoghue’s in the Gleneagle Hotel.

      20 Acres in Killarney $$$$$$$

    • #745997

      I’m shocked…

    • #745998

      Kerry Cllr ‘may have breached ethics’
      Thursday, 10 May 2007 15:53
      A report on alleged breaches of ethics by two councillors in Killarney, Co Kerry, has been published.

      The Standards in Public Office Commission report confirms that it will be referring the case of Fianna Fáil Councillor Patrick O’Donoghue to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

      The commission concluded that he may have committed offences under the Local Government Act during his attempts to rezone land owned by his family on the outskirts of Killarney.

      AdvertisementThe commission also found that Mayor of Killarney Sheila Casey, Fine Gael Councillor, did not breach the Local Government Act because she may not have had knowledge that, as an employee of the O’Donoghue family, she had a beneficial interest in the motion to rezone the lands.

      Tut tut

    • #745999

      @PVC King wrote:

      The commission also found that Mayor of Killarney Sheila Casey, Fine Gael Councillor, did not breach the Local Government Act because she may not have had knowledge that, as an employee of the O’Donoghue family, she had a beneficial interest in the motion to rezone the lands.

      Ah shur God bless the Blueshirts – they just haven’t a clue about this plannin stuff – unlike the cute FF hoors.

      Poor oul Ml Lowrey was even kept in the dark by his civil servants. He had no idea he needed planning permission.

      Innocents abroad.

    • #746000

      The frightening thing is that Lowrey topped the poll at the next election and was in the top 10 national vote totals. Will be under pressure this time the constituency looks tight.

      There has to be zero tolerance of this type of thing; first whiff and your out. No doubt Cllr O’Donaghue is canvassing away with his tri-coloured badge promoting his namesake.

    • #746001
    • #746002

      @PVC King wrote:

      That says it all

      I suppose we are getting a little off topic and political here. However, I expect nothing from Councillors and am never disappointed.

      What does annoy me is the shock horror antics of same (and their masters) when the inevitable chicken (with salmonella) comes home to roost. For example the recent contamination of drinking water and seawater exposed by the EPA.

      Who is to blame? THEM up above in DUBLIN – i.e. the administration and (as always) the Planners.

      This despite the repeated advice from Planners that perticular Section 140 motions, or frequently insane rezonings, will lead precisely to this dilemma. All they care about is local favour. Nothing else.

      I have said it before – the situation is out of control and beyond remedy and many decent and competent local authority planners have given up the struggle in the face of continued political sabotage.

      I would consider voting Green except I am old enough to remember the bad economic times and (selfishly) want to keep my head above the water financially for another while (cue to joke about Global Warming).

    • #746003

      I can’t argue that given the backdrop it is entirely unreasonable to feel apothetic.

      Key point in this is that a Councillor has been refered to the director of public prosecutions for alleged use of a party mandate to advance his family interests.

      The same councillor is permitted to retain that mandate at election time. If you vote FF you are voting for alleged abuse of the planning system.

    • #746004

      Tom Currans has reopened old wounds with an attack on the planning agents in Kerry ignoring the factt that planners in kerry are to a man: evasive, inarticulate & inconsistent!

Viewing 36 reply threads
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.

Latest News