The path is almost clear for Mountmellick's crime fighting CCTV cameras to go up, with a big fundraiser on the way by the committee to ensure there is enough money in the kitty for ongoing maintenance costs.
About 30 high resolution cameras will go up in pairs in the town, on the busy N80. It is hoped cameras can track criminals and deter crime.
Tthe committee began fundraising in 2016. They received public donations of almost €14,000 to date which will cover installation.
A hold-up by Laois County Council over its concern at becoming the data controller has been ironed out. Paperwork is now being drawn up to create a Laois federation of CCTV groups, after which each group can apply for government grants to buy their cameras.
Barbara Lalor is on the Mountmellick committee.
“We hope to get the money and have the cameras up and running by the end of 2019. We never thought it would take this long. We are all working for the good of the community and we thank people for their great support,” she said.
A CCTV Sale of Work takes place in the Owenass Hall on Sunday April 14 from 11.30 to about 5pm. Donations can be left there the previous day.
“It generated a great atmosphere last year. We'll take anything from a needle to an anchor, though soft toys are hard to sell. Clothes, unwanted gifts are all welcome. We will have free tea and coffee and people can stay and chat. We will have a raffle too,” said Barbara.
Call her at 086 6629446 to enquire, or see notes.