Day 100 for County Limerick eviction protest

Gerard Fitzgibbon

Reporter:

Gerard Fitzgibbon

TODAY is the 100th day of a protest by a County Limerick farmer who has barricaded himself and his family into their home following a threat of eviction.

TODAY is the 100th day of a protest by a County Limerick farmer who has barricaded himself and his family into their home following a threat of eviction.

However Seamus Sherlock, whose stance has drawn dozens of supporters from across the country to his farm in Feohanagh, said that there does not appear to be any end in sight in his stand-off with Bank of Scotland over a €430,000 mortgage.

Mr Sherlock’s impromptu anti-eviction protest has endured highs and lows since it began in August; from the visit of high profile campaigners such as musician Jim Corr and former MEP Kathy Sinnott, to articles in the national press labelling him a “serial defaulter” who has had four court judgements issued against him over unpaid debts.

However Mr Sherlock insisted that he, his children and the protesters that continue to man the barricades around-the-clock remain resolute.

“We’re still here, we’re still getting terrific support from the local people. I hoped after 100 days we’d have some good news, but there’s been nothing”.

It is 100 days since Mr Sherlock began his protest after he received a notice of eviction from the County Registrar’s office over the mortgage for his home and 50-acre farm, which he bought in 2002.

Following discussions with his children, who live with him, Mr Sherlock decided to lock the gates to his farm and erect a barricade with 40 bales of silage to ward off any attempts at forced eviction.

His stance, which attracted local and national media attention, led to a flood of friends and campaigners from across the country travelling to joint his picket.

Since August, camp sites have been erected on the farm, food parcels and equipment have been donated by sympathisers and a 24-hour watch has been held at the main gate.

Mr Sherlock said that while he has not received any direct contact with Bank of Scotland, discussions between his solicitor and the bank are ongoing.

However, he insisted that “no agreement” is in place yet. Mr Sherlock added that since the protest began, there has been “no hassle” and no major incidents at the farm.

To mark the 100 day anniversary Mr Sherlock will launch a new information leaflet, 5,000 copies of which have been printed for free by a supporter in Waterford.

“A couple of years ago I started up this group that was just about helping people who might be in debt. We’re launching a flyer to mark the 100 days. It’s just basic stuff, telling people how to cope and how important it is to stay in your home.”