Mountmellick's CCTV cameras to start going up within weeks

Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Lynda Kiernan

Mountmellick Neighbourhood Watch welcomes cash to erect CCTV throughout town

Mountmellick Neighbourhood Watch welcomes cash to erect CCTV throughout town

Mountmellick in Laois will have some 40 CCTV cameras operating throughout the town next year, after funding and a green light was finally granted.

This week Mountmellick Neighbourhood Watch was granted nearly €36,000 by the Department of Justice to pay for the cost of new cameras, and another €5,000 towards maintenance costs. The scheme and others in Laois were delayed over data controllor issues, finally ironed out in early 2019.  Read that story here.

Barbara Lalor from the group is thrilled to have the money to finally get the cameras up without delay.

"Our plan is hopefully by the end of January they will start to go up. We have 40 cameras. People think Mountmellick is just a main street but we will have cameras on every entrance to the town, and a few along the main street," she said.

"We know it won't solve everything, but CCTV is proven to reduce crime, and anti-social behaviour as well," Ms Lalor told the Leinster Express.

She is grateful to everyone who donated money over the past three years.

"We are about €100 shy of €16,000. We started fundraising in mid 2016 by sending letters to businesses and we've had two sales of work, with another coming up in March. I thank the people of Mountmellick, they are just brilliant. I know they must be tired putting their hands in their pockets, but we truly appreciate the support. We will still have to fundraise to maintain the cameras but the maintenance grant is an added bonus, it takes the pressure off having a big fundraiser," she said.

The public will have privacy protected she said.

"There will not be somebody looking at monitors. It is totally confidential. It will need a high ranking Garda like an inspector to put in writing to see footage. We will make sure privacy is protected," she said.

Mountmellick Tidy Towns announced it on their facebook page on behalf of the neighbourhood watch group.

They thank everyone who donated and supported the project.

"Mountmellick Neighbourhood Watch received good news today. They've been granted €35,938.77 and a maintenance grant of 5,000 towards the cost of erecting CCTV. The Committee would like to thank everyone who supported the project from August 2015 to December 2019, yes its been a long road but its finally paid off. We'd like to thank businesses and residents of Mountmellick and surrounding area for your donations and support of our fundraisers. We'd also like to thank An Garda Síochána for their support and guidance throughout the course of the process. Minister Charlie Flanagan TD and his staff in the Justice Department, in particular Rosemary Whelan & Mark Doyle. Laois County Council, David O`Hara planning, Georgia Ireland & Pamela Tynan. Paddy Buggy, Manager & The Board of Mountmellick Development Association, for the use of their premises & resources throughout the whole process. To all the groups who have supported us from the start. Please forgive us if we've missed someone it's not intentional. Going forward in 2020 we will now be able to achieve what we set out to do & that is to make our community a safer place to live. We'd also like to wish you all a Happy Christmas and a very happy New Year  Ps we will be having another sale of work in March 2020 to keep the funds topped up."