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"Vast majority" of tree-cutting completed on Teresa Treacy's land

That is according to Eirgrid and the ESB, who once again stated their “deep regret” over Ms Treacy’s jailing for contempt of court.

Teresa Treacy, pictured at her land outside Tullamore, Co Offaly.
Teresa Treacy, pictured at her land outside Tullamore, Co Offaly.

THE ESB AND EIRGRID say that the “vast majority” of work has been completed on land owned by Teresa Treacy, 65, who is currently in Mountjoy Prison after being jailed for contempt of court two weeks ago.

Treacy was jailed after she said she would not allow staff from the ESB and Eirgrid to gain access to her land for the construction of an overhead power line.

Today, Eirgrid released a statement saying they estimate 1.5 days of tree cutting on site remain on 1.2 acres of forestry. They say the tree cutting will have impacted approximately 5% of the overall commercial plantation.

ESB and EirGrid added:

Representatives of the companies were involved in the past week in positive discussions with the family of Ms Treacy who has been imprisoned for contempt of court, and progress was made towards a resolution.
A feature of the companies’ plans is a major programme of planting of replacement trees, following the construction of the vital electricity line.  In the discussions it has been clear that delays or an impasse caused by protests would be regretted by both the family and ESB/EirGrid as it would result in prolonging Ms Treacy’s stay in the Dochas Centre.

Both companies have today restated “their deep regret that despite over three years of discussions, the situation reached this juncture”.

A spokesperson from the Teresa Treacy Support Group told TheJournal.ie:

[The ESB and Eirgrid] still have to get into the property from the back, which people have succeeded in stopping them from working on. They have to cut maybe 4000 or 5000 trees from the back side of the property.

Early this morning there were already 30 people on the land, protesting and replanting trees.

“The atmosphere is very good,” said the spokesperson. “People are camped on the site where the pylon is supposed to go and people have been collecting wood for the stove. People have been coming with donations of food and different people have dropped off native Irish trees. There’s a lot of things going on.”

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He said that the tree-felling that had been done to date was accomplished because there hadn’t been enough protesters to stop the work.

If they are going to try and work now, there is no way they will be able to work. There are so many people here. If the ESB did try to work it would just be an ugly backlash.

A protest is being organised for Tuesday at the ESB headquarters on Stephen’s Green.

A vigil will take place tonight in Dublin at Mountjoy Women’s Prison from 6 – 8pm.

Read: ESB and Eirgrid say they ‘deeply regret Teresa Treacy situation>

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