Irwin welcomes Kingsmill Planning Enforcement quash

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Tuesday, June 18th, 2013
Community, Politics

Newry and Armagh DUP Assemblyman William Irwin has welcomed a decision by DOE Minister Alex Attwood to quash a Planning Enforcement action letter sent to the owner of the land on which the Kingsmill Memorial is located.

The memorial, which honours the memory of the 10 innocent workmen, who were gunned down after being ordered out of their work minibus by armed republicans, is located close to the scene of the horrific massacre.

The families of the innocent victims were concerned after the land owner received a notification from Planning Service informing them that the memorial had no planning permission, something which Mr Irwin immediately took issue with.

Irwin welcomed the DoE Minister’s intervention as they two spoke today live on the BBC Radio Ulster Talkback programme and he stated, “I was really angered by the decision Planning Service had taken to issue a letter to the land owner.

“I felt aggrieved that the families and the land owner would be subject to enforcement action on what is a very fitting and poignant memorial to innocent victims of republican terrorism.

“I was given the opportunity to express these concerns on BBC Talkback and I had earlier in the morning requested a meeting with Alex Attwood to discuss these issues.

“On air I referred to the five illegal roadside terrorist memorials which exist in this constituency without any apparent departmental challenge and the lack of action from Roads Minister Danny Kennedy in this regard.

Irwin continued, “I also referred to a decision Minister Attwood had personally taken in the recent past to intervene and quash a court action over a shopping banner in Hill Street in Newry.

“I made the point that the issue of a memorial to innocent victims of terrorism was vastly more important than a shopping banner and should, by that virtue, receive a similar and swift resolution.

He added, “I was absolutely delighted with Minister Attwood’s response and I acknowledge his immediate reaction to my request and to do so live on air was all the more appropriate for the families of the innocent victims.

“I know that the memorial will be unveiled shortly and thankfully this can now be done without any unnecessary distractions, the focus will be purely on the memory of the Kingsmill innocent victims.”


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