Saturday, 27 November 2010

Muir convenes Save our Reservoirs Public Meeting

I am holding a Public Meeting concerning the proposed sale of Reservoirs across North Down after discovering that NI Water are considering fast tracking the sale of a number of the sites.

Representatives from a variety of key organisations such as Woodland Trust, RSPB and Ulster Wildlife Trust will be there to provide information.

As a result of information obtained it is clear that Portavoe plus Ballysallagh Upper and Lower Reservoirs are under clear and present danger. The Reservoirs now face the prospect of being flogged to the highest bidder..

NI Water emails obtained detail the following in relation to Ballysallagh Upper and Lower Reservoirs;

"I have passed a document to EMT requesting that a number of decommissioned sites be brought forward in the Disposal Plan and Ballysallagh IR's is included" 15 June 2010

"The bottom line from an operational perspective is that we would like these reservoirs sold asap as we are still obliged to carry out regular fenceline and reservoir inspections and the associated Health and Safety maintenance picked up as a result" 10 September 2009

"I would welcome a fast track disposal strategy" 20 April 2010

"End result if it all works out - You get rid of at least one of the reservoirs. NI Water takes in some money". 20 April 2010

Ballysallagh Reservoirs aren't unfortunately the only Reservoirs under immediate threat. Portavoe Reservoir between Groomsport and Donaghadee is also listed for sale in 2011/12. Two Reservoirs in Conlig are also scheduled for sale in 2013/14 with the sale of the Church Road and Creighton’s Green Reservoirs scheduled for 2015/16.

I have now organised a Public Meeting scheduled for Wednesday 8 December 2010, 7.30pm at Bangor Sportsplex, Old Belfast Road, Bangor.

The meeting is open to everyone, including other politicians. This is both a North Down and Northern Ireland wide problem which requires a united approach.

Woodland Trust, RSPB and Ulster Wildlife Trust will be in attendance to provide information.

I hope that the meeting will result in the formation of a Campaign Committee.

I look forward to seeing many people at the meeting on 8 December 2010 to Save our Reservoirs.

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