Posted by: fermoyweir | January 6, 2010

Press Release from Fermoy Rowing Club

Minister Conor Lenihan has ordered Fermoy Town Council to repair the salmon ladder and plans to install a monitoring system. We are cautiously satisfied with this result and we call on the Town Council to repair the entire weir, which has been allowed to become undermined over the past two hundred years, and to install further passes as necessary. When we travelled to Europe in 2009 we were told that there was a possibility that EU funding might be available to renovate the weir and we would urge the Town Council to explore this opportunity immediately.
 
We would demand the implementation of an electronic tagging system to properly monitor the numbers of salmon getting through the weir. Last year such a system was introduced for Careysville and was never turned on. Even now with the salmon ladder so badly damaged, the Standing Scientific Committee of the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources shows figures for salmon upstream of the weir as being in surplus of quota over the last three years. In point of fact, the Munster Blackwater is considered the second-best river in Ireland for salmon conservation and we feel that proper monitoring, using 21st rather than 19th Century technology, would bring clarity to this issue.
 
Minister Lenihan could not have done more for us and we are very grateful to our local TDs who have worked so hard for us. Former MEP Kathy Sinnott provided invaluable help at European level. Our Town and County Councillors have been a huge support also and have shown that they can work together for a shared purpose.
 
We can never repay all of the people who have supported us. The anglers and the other sports clubs have spoken with one voice and told the bureaucrats that our river belongs to us, the people of the town. And the people of Fermoy (and beyond) have shown their love of their river and we will never forget that. In saving the weir (for the moment at least) they have saved Fermoy Rowing Club as well. Not a bad end to our 125th Year!
 
Donal O’Keeffe
Hon Secretary
 
Fermoy Rowing Club

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