A SPECIAL meeting of Limerick City Council has been convened to discuss the plight of up to 20 people who had to flee in terror from their “neighbours from hell” in Garryowen.
Former mayor and Independent councillor John Gilligan said the council has a ‘moral responsibility’ to give preference to families forced to leave, instead of adding them to the council’s ever-growing housing waiting list, which now stands at over 3,000.
Cllr Gilligan said the estate of Fairview Crescent, which was established less than 10 years ago, was “one of the best estates we had in the city” when it was built, and should have served as a housing model for the rest of the city.
“Unfortunately some residents proved to be neighbours from hell and a sizeable amount of people had to pack up and leave due to the terror tactics they used. The people being subjected to intimidation were the people who put a lot of money into their houses, were proud of their area and were model residents,” he said.
The council took action against a number of individuals involved in anti-social behaviour through the courts, but Cllr Gilligan said by the time the cases were dealt with the damage had already been done.
CCTV cameras have now been installed in the area, which are being monitored by gardai. However, he said residents who felt compelled to leave are now in a “state of limbo” regarding their housing situation.
A special meeting of Limerick City Council is to be convened in the coming weeks to allow councillors to discuss Fairview Crescent and other areas where residents may be subjected to intimidation.
The meeting will not be held in public, due to the “degree of sensitivity and delicacy” surrounding these issues, the director of service Kieran Lehane said.
“The members wanted to have a full and frank discussion on it, and if it was held in public information could be inferred about particular households,” he said