Ballinrobe Courthouse will not be re-opened and plans to relocate it to Claremorris pending the development of a new facility there now seems highly unlikely, according to Mayo Fine Gael TD, John O’Mahony.
The Court Service has informed Deputy O’Mahony that the Court House as it exists in Ballinrobe at the moment is inadequate for court sittings and it has no plans to re-open the building. Furthermore, given the current economic climate, any plans to relocate the service in a newly built facility in Claremorris appear to be out of the question.
“It looks like the Ballinrobe Court will continue to sit in Castlebar for the foreseeable future. When it was closed, much was made of the plan to hold the court sittings in a newly constructed court house in Claremorris but that has been put on the long finger too.
“The court sat in Ballinrobe twice monthly and they were important days for the town. There was an extra spend in the town with all the attendant services that a court brings with it such as the legal profession, the gardaí, media and so on. Now, all of that has been lost to Ballinrobe and there does not appear to be much chance of it returning.
“In many ways, it’s another example of the decimation of services in rural Ireland. We’ve had the decline of the rural post offices, the rural Garda stations, the closure of the agricultural offices, and now the court houses. We seem to be living in a society where those that make the decisions appear to want its people to spend their time travelling to central locations to carry out their ordinary business that they used to be able to do in their own area.
“It’s misguided and just doesn’t make any sense and Fine Gael will do all in its power to ensure that decisions such as the one affecting the Ballinrobe Courthouse are overturned,” Dep O’Mahoney said.