12 Aug 2022

Very mixed reaction in Offaly to location of Covid-19 Vaccine Centre

Offaly's Faithful Fields set for official opening

Offaly's Faithful Fields set for official opening

There has been a very mixed reaction to the news that the Covid-19 Vaccine Centre for Offaly will be located at Faithful Fields, the Offaly GAA Facility outside Kilcormac. 

In the comments on Offaly Express Facebook and Twitter pages, the majority of people felt the centre should have been in Tullamore with others having differing opinions. 

This exchange sums up the differing opinions and the strange geographical spread of the county. One reader wrote:

"It should be in Tullamore and there should be more than one centre what if someone was driving home and took a bad reaction to the vaccine"

One response stated: 

"Why has everything to be in Tullamore , Kilcormac is half way between Birr and Tullamore perfect location"

Which received this response from the other end of the county

"Is Edenderry not considered part of Offaly."

A common train of thought was that there was nowhere suitable in Tullamore summed up by this comment:

"Its a capacity issue. Nowhere in Tullamore big enough to get the through put for mass vaccination"

That was met with a series of responses listing suitable places in Tullamore with these two making the case for the town.

"Court Hotel would have excess capacity at the minute due to closure and carparking would not be an issue as hotel is closed and there no other guests using the hotel."

"O Brien Park, soccer club, rugby club, The Harriers. There are so many better places than faithful fields being honest"

One comment noted that, for once, people in towns would understand what it was like to try and get around rural Ireland.

"It's amazing how people get all hot and bothered about rural Ireland for once having something necessary in a rural location most of the time big towns don't give a toss about rural Ireland until suddenly they need the transport to get to an important service rurally placed..just saying."

But these replies to this pointed to the lack of infrastructure in Kilcormac and the amount of people who face long journeys.

There are no footpaths from Kilcormac to Faithful Fields. No infrastructure to get to and from. People from some parts of the county are an hour away. If you tried to pick a worse site you'd hard pressed.

Largest population ignored. If they want a high take up of the vaccine then they should consider where and how people are meant to get to the centre.

Miles away from the majority of the population of the county. Nearly an hour's drive for the 8600 people who live in Edenderry and surrounding areas

However this comment will have many people nodding their heads

Don't care where it is as long as we get the vaccine 

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