A decision on the planning application for a 56 bed nursing home in Swinford has been delayed by Mayo County Council after planners requested more information before deciding on the project’s future. UK company StuNat Care Ltd had applied for planning permission for the nursing home, which would consist of 52 single bedrooms, four double bedrooms, day rooms, dining room, kitchen, oratory, and visitor rooms along with many more associated facilities, in early September, and a decision had been due earlier this month.
However, before the date for decision planners requested more information and put the application on hold for the near future. It is hoped the development, earmarked for a site at Deerpark on the Kilkelly road close to the N5 and Swinford Industrial Estate, would create up to 60 jobs in the nursing home and further positions during the construction phase. StuNat is a registered company in Essex, England, with Dr Davie Viva Kananda listed as a director, and it is understood he has strong ties to the east Mayo region in Aghamore and Tooreen.
Fine Gael Senator John O’Mahony told the Mayo Advertiser: “It would be a tremendous boost to the area to see new jobs in construction and operation of nursing home. It's jobs like that which are needed in towns like Swinford, etc, as there are spin offs from those jobs which can help communities, with ancilliary knock on effects like money spent in the area and new homes. The likes of Kiltimagh, Charlestown, and Foxford would also feel the long term benefits. I would very much welcome it.”
Local Fianna Fail councilor Michael Smyth also welcomed the proposed development and the jobs attached to it, telling The Mayo Advertiser, “I welcome the jobs proposal for the proposed nursing home in Newpark and I hope they are successful in the planning application. I understand the proprietors are an English based company with a history and knowledge of the administration of nursing homes. Obviously the standards that HIQA apply are high and I hope they meet the criteria for the planning application. I welcome the possible jobs and I know that the construction jobs will be very welcome as well as it will hopefully employ local contractors and that, along with some other smaller local enterprises which are setting up in the town, is more than welcome in Swinford. We are open for business and happy to see any employer coming in here to set up and I, and other people in Swinford, will do our very best to facilitate the development in any way we can.”
There were no objections to the plans submitted to Mayo County Council, suggesting the people and businesses of Swinford are behind the project. There are also plans being put in place for a new business venture, based at the PND building (formerly Pat Coyne Tyres ) on the Ballina road in the town, which could lead to 15 new positions being created. It is hoped those will be announced before the end of the year.