The issue of the proposed National Forensic Hospital to be located at St Ita’s Hospital Portrane was brought to the full Council meeting on 8th December 2014. I was delighted to support both Cllr Paul Mullville’s and Cllr Adrian Henchy’s motions on the issue.
Both Cllr Mullville and Cllr Henchy have worked to both support the project but also ensure that local residents legitimate concerns are both heard and acted upon.
Attached below is the full report given to the County Council by the Chief Executive Officer of Fingal County Council:
Attached below are submissions on the issue to An Bord Pleanála from Cllr Henchy and St Patrick’s GAA Club:
Cllr Paul Mullvile Motions: National Forensic Mental Health Service (NFMHS) Hospital on lands at St. Ita’s Hospital, Portrane
Seconded Cllr Justin Sinnott
Lack of Consultation:
The applicant should make a full hard-copy copy of the plans and documentation available forthwith to the local community, including any further documentation and reports that are issued as part of the An Bord Pleanála process, available to the local community, perhaps through the community council and the local community centre,
Given the lack of meaningful consultation and engagement with the local community, the applicant must open a staffed and resourced community engagement office immediately in the local area, perhaps in the hospital grounds, where outreach work can be carried out to explain the plans for the NFMHS, including public meetings, workshops and discussions, and furthermore, the applicant should carry out an information campaign locally, including leaflet drops in the Donabate Portrane peninsula to explain the plans and the service that the NFMHS will provide, and the planning process as it moves forward, and that this office must be opened by the end of the first quarter 2015.
That this council calls on a full oral Bord Pleanála hearing to take place, and that the applicant must make a reasonable and adequate amount of funding available to the local community to cover independent planning consultancy for the hearing and in the lead up to it.
Notwithstanding the need for the full results of the traffic survey to be made public, and given the very restricted road traffic access into the Donabate Portrane area and the severe impact any construction traffic has on the area, the applicant must be conditioned by An Bord Pleanála, to provide a temporary construction haul road from the Balcarrick/New Road across the Council owned land in Ballymastone/Ballalease, to the existing sewage plant haul road in Portrane Demesne, and that this haul road must be put in place before any demolition or construction work begins.
Notwithstanding the need for the full results of the traffic survey to be made public, and given the very restricted road traffic access into the Donabate Portrane area and the severe impact any construction traffic has on the area, the applicant must be conditioned by An Bord Pleanála, the applicant must be conditioned to carry out works or provide funding for widening and improvement of the very dangerous section of road from the vicinity of “Hilltop Cottage” to the railway bridge, and that these work must be completed before any demolition or construction work begins.
Notwithstanding the need for the full results of the traffic survey to be made public, given the very restricted road traffic access into the Donabate Portrane area, the applicant must fully examine, set out the costs for, and negotiate with local landowners, for the provision of:
- a) a temporary construction haul road including a temporary construction bridge across the railway line, stretching from the R126, across the railway line, behind the Strand estate, and joining the Balcarrick/New Road;
- b) an alternative construction route off the R126 to Corballis, and possibly through the existing private farm road from Corballis to the Balcarrick/New Road;
- and that if the costs are reasonable relative to the overall costs of the project, and Bord Pleanála must condition the provision of either or both of the above; and furthermore that this information must be provided to the local community well in advance of the anticipated oral hearing.
The applicant must take greater steps to provide for community gain, taking into account the various submissions made by local community, sports, cultural and residents’ groups, and that any community gain should benefit the community as a whole as widely as possible.
Policing and Security:
The applicant must begin consultations with An Garda Síochána, which must commence by end of first quarter 2015, to ensure that adequate policing resources will be in place in advance of the facility opening and coming into operation.
The applicant must put enter in consultation with the local community, including schools and residents’ groups, to put in place security protocols and alarm systems, along the lines as are in place in similar facilities in Broadmoor, Ashworth and Rampton Hospitals in England and the State Hospital for Scotland and Northern Ireland in Carstairs, Scotland, and that these negotiations must be progressing and agreed at least in principle, by end of second quarter 2015.