Joint Policing Forum draws large crowd

A large attendance of local residents gathered recently in Scoil Mhuire gan Smal, Blarney, for the 1 IMG_9122. Gardai in attendance included Superintendant Micheal Maguire, Inspector Brian O’Donovan, Northside Community Policing Sergeant Mick O’Connell, Blarney Sergeant Mark Dempsey, Blarney Community Policing Garda Sean O’Dwyer and Blarney Garda Margaret Murphy. The forum was chaired by Damian Boylan assisted by Secretary Kate Durrant. Superintendant Micheal Maguire addressed the meeting and, as head of community engagement in the northside, introduced the new policing pilot project that he is spearheading, emphasised the need to work together, and to give Gardai information and names. ‘We are here to help, here to listen and won’t be found wanting.’ Tim O’Leary, Bus Eireann, attended and spoke of his disappointment about recent ‘bus stonings’ (five since January). He explained that if this continues it will impact on bus services, in particular he noted that the bus stop at Riverview may be temporarily taken away and the bus may have to terminate at Blarney and go no further. He continued to say that, as all buses carry CCTV, he will be asking drivers to phone Gardai immediately if anything happens on or to the buses in our area. One local convenience retail business said this was the worse 12 months they have had in over a decade and they are considering closing early as their premises was becoming a ‘no go area’ due to gangs of youths congregating. Residents from various areas spoke of their distress at the increasing anti social behaviours, vandalism to their cars and homes, and gangs of underage drinkers gathering at weekends. Suggestions from the floor included the reinstatement of the a text alert system by John Foley, Chairman Blarney Chamber, and engaging with the young people in our schools through teachers and sports personalities People were asked to phone Anglesea Street on 021 4522000 or 999 if they see ANYTHING causing concern as Gardai will be operating a no tolerance approach to all anti social behaviour.

Community