A TULLAMORE business owner resorted to blocking traffic into the Tanyard with his delivery vans while he chained himself to the outside of the new Tullamore Library in frustration with difficulties he is experiencing because of the ongoing construction works, adjacent to his premises.
Oisin O’Sullivan took matters into his own hands and simply got “fed up” when yet another lorry was unable to make a delivery to his business last Thursday morning - this time because of a newly installed footpath outside his furniture store.
“When we came into the yard, they had put a footpath overnight. We couldn’t get a lorry in or out. Now, we did get around it but that is not the point,” said a frustrated Mr O’Sullivan.
“This has been going on for four months now, since before Christmas with roads being dug up and scaffolding going up and down. It is stopping the traffic coming in the town.”
Local Gardai responded to the situation and arrived on the scene where they spoke with Mr O’Sullivan in a bid to defuse the situation and his vans were later removed from the roadway while Mr O’Sullivan unchained himself from outside the library.
Speaking to the ‘Offaly Express’, the business man said he understood that the work had to be done on the library but he claimed that there has been no consultation with him in relation to the proposed works in the area by Tullamore Town Council.
He also mentioned in particular the latest addition of a second footpath outside his gates and said that the Council officials have only spoken to him directly once in relation to making the street one way. Mr O’Sullivan pointed out that he would be open to speaking to the Council in relation to his difficulties if they had been in contact to outline what their proposals were for the area.
The business owner said instead that the already narrow street at the bottom of the Tanyard has been narrowed again by the latest footpath being installed in an area, he described as “one of most dangerous corners” in the town.
Speaking about his experience over the last few months, he said the situation is “stopping the traffic coming in and out of the town” and explained that he staged the protest because he felt that his plight needed to be highlighted.
“There has been no debate on this. No consultation. I have had 28 lorries diverted since Christmas. I just got fed up.”
According to Mr O’Sullivan, the situation seems to be “just getting worse” and not better while voicing further concerns about proposals to possibly make O’Connor Square a pedestrian only zone. “It is about getting people into the town and out with ease,” he added. Mr O’Sullivan said that he had no response from Tullamore Town Council since his protest. He pointed out that the situation “can’t keep going on like this” and wants Tullamore Town Council to do something to address his difficulties.
Meanwhile, Tullamore Town Council were contacted on the matter however at the time of going to press they didn’t issue a reply.