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Some locals are very unhappy about Longford's bumper new water park

Center Parcs Longford was officially announced last summer.

cp1 Artist's impression of Center Parcs Longford

CENTER PARCS IS coming to Longford, and it’s bringing with it 1,750 jobs. But not everyone in the locality is happy about it.

The giant water park was first announced 12 months ago for the Ballymahon area, with Taoiseach Enda Kenny saying at the time that the occasion represented “a massive opportunity that should not be wasted”.

In February the giant park was officially given planning permission by Longford County Council. 84 submissions were made regarding the planning application, most of which were in support of the park, but there were quite a few dissenting voices too.

At least two of those objections have been kicked further up the ladder and been registered officially with An Bórd Pleanála, while Shannonside Radio reports that a third objection has been lodged with the State planning body also.

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The two people who have objected to An Bórd Pleanála are a Mr Robbie Hannifin and a Mr B Power.

Their complaints, and those of other objectors, are listed on the Longford County Council’s website under planning application 15174.

Mr Hannifin’s objection suggests that “the proposed development is unsustainable and would, if commenced, become Carrigglas No 2″.

Carrigglas Manor was a development at the same-titled estate near Longford Town announced in 2006 as “one of the most significant developments for the Irish tourist industry”.

The project was never completed and the developers went into liquidation in 2008 as the economic crash began to bite.

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Mr Power’s objection is a little more abstract – he claims that “there is so much paper accompanying this planning application that I am fearful for the future of the Brazilian rainforests”, before launching into an adapted rendition of a 1798 ballad:

Oh then tell me Sean O Farrell where is Center Parcs to be?… There’s four hundred mud-walled cabins I’ll be watching every night, but my manly heart is beating for the blessed planning fight.

Other objections to the county council listed are of a more focused nature – residents claiming that their ‘peaceful rural life’ will be disturbed by the arrival of 2,500 guests per week to remote Ballymahon, while others have asked that the access routes planned for the park be changed so as to preserve their quality of life.

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Each submission made cost €20.

Taking the matter to An Bórd Pleanála is another matter again – such an objection can cost anything between €50 and €660.

The deadline for such objections has now passed, while a final decision is expected by 25 July 2016.

Center Parcs has 25 resorts across Europe, including five in the UK.

The resorts are typically located in woodland areas and offer a range of leisure activities, spa treatments and more.

Read: This massive €223m holiday resort is on its way to Longford

Read: The Greens are out and some independents aren’t keen on Fine Gael

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