LIMERICK city has received a major boost with confirmation that more than 200 army personnel are to be transferred to Sarsfield Barracks from Kickham Barracks in Clonmel over the next few months.
The Defence Forces has confirmed that 16 officers, 184 enlisted personnel and six civilian employees will all be transferred to Sarsfield Barracks following the Government decision on Tuesday to close Kickham Barracks and three other army barracks across the country.
All of the closures, which form part of cost-cutting measures, are due to be completed by March 30, 2012.
The Limerick Leader understands that significant investment will be required at Sarsfield Barracks in order to accomodate the additional personnel and the works will commence almost immediately.
While no figures have been officially disclosed, the figure is likely to be in the region of €5 million
Mayor of Limerick, Cllr Jim Long, says the arrival of the Defence Forces personnel from Clonmel will be a major boost for the city.
“We have to welcome the addition of these 200 plus people to Limerick and I would have to welcome any additional investment in Sarsfield Barracks because it is one of the core strategic barracks in the country,” he said.
Cllr Long says he hopes the Defence Forces personnel will be welcomed when they arrive in Limerick early next year.
“Our soldiers are more than an army; they are part of the economy and they spend money in the local economy when they go about their daily lives,” he said.