Section 8 Rural Settlements

opendate_range12 Jan, 2021, 9:00am - 23 Mar, 2021, 5:00pm

8. RURAL SETTLEMENTS

Note: Please click on the links to supporting zoning maps to the right under Materials.

8.1      ARLES

Population by ED

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

418

421

-1%

Housing Stock by ED

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

146

142

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Unserviced

Unserviced

N80

Partially serviced and remaining areas serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

Arles National School (Enrolement: 56)

Sacred Heart RC Church and graveyard

Arles GAA pitch

Public House, Garda station

Environment

Conservation

Flooding

2.5km north of River Barrow/Nore SAC

Not applicable

Cultural Heritage

Protected Structures

 

 

Monuments

RPS 375 Church

RPS 518 Freestanding Georgian Gothic mausoleum

LA01639 St Abbans Well

LA01640 penal mass station

8.1.1  CONTEXT AND CHARACTER

Arles is a small picturesque village located on the N80 approx. 9 kilometres west of Carlow Town. Despite its limited size and population, Arles enjoys a relatively healthy service base including church, national school with associated playing fields, Garda station and public house.

In addition, a housing scheme and related treatment system (PE 150) has been developed on the south-eastern approach to the village doubling the population of the village and supporting its sustainability as a settlement.

The Church provides the focal point for the village setting, with an adjacent small semi-circular public open space provides a pleasant setting to the public house and adjacent buildings. GAA playing fields are located to the north of the village.

8.1.2  REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing Land Requirement

There is a lack of social infrastructure and local services in the village, where neighbouring urban areas provide access to commercial services and community facilities. Only natural/organic residential growth will be encouraged over the lifetime of the Plan in line with the Core Strategy.

Village Centre Regeneration

Due to the rural nature of this village, there is limited scope for development opportunities. There is, however, a significant derelict building located to the west of the Church, the presents a regeneration opportunity. This structure is located within the village centre zoning and could be redeveloped for community uses or residential uses. Public realm improvements are also encouraged throughout the village such as tree planting and greening.

8.1.3  WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Sustainable Development and Regeneration

ARL 1     Reinforce the approaches to the village through creative placemaking including additional planting of native trees and biodiversity planting;

ARL 2     Support the improvement and maintenance of the small open space in the village core;

 

Economic Development

ARL 3     Facilitate and support mixed[a1]  use development at an appropriate scale within village core subject to planning and development standards;

 

Infrastructure

ARL 4     Provide and improve footpath and cycle path in the village core between the residential estate and the GAA playing fields;

ARL 5     Facilitate enhanced set-down and traffic calming measures in the vicinity of the school.

ARL 6     Provide traffic calming measures and a convenient pedestrian crossing  in response to high traffic volumes and in association with new pedestrian and cycle linkages;

ARL 7     Carry out incremental improvements to the existing road network.

 

8.2      BALLACOLLA

Population

(Killermogh ED)

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Population Change

346

341

1

Housing Stock by ED

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

145

145

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Group Water Scheme

Unserviced

R433, R434

Partially serviced and remaining areas serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Scial Infrastructure

School

Church

 

Sporting Facilities

Community Centre

Other

St. Pius X National School

Church of Immaculate Conception RC and Graveyard

GAA grounds, handball facility

Hawthorn Community Centre

Village shop, 3 local pubs

Glanbia, Garda Station

Environment/Heritage

Conservation

 

 

Flooding

River Barrow/Nore SAC 2.5km south

Cuffborough pNHA 2.5km west

Grantstown Nature Reserve pNHA 3km west

Not Applicable

Cultural Heritage

Protected Structure

 

2 Protected Structures

8.2.1  CONTEXT AND CHARACTER

The rural village of Ballacolla is located in south Laois at the crossroads of the R433 Abbeyleix to Rathdowney regional roads and the R434 Durrow to Borris in Ossory regional roads. The village is well connected to larger urban areas, being 4kms from Junction 3 of the M8, 8kms West of Abbeyleix, 11kms East of Rathdowney, 6kms North of Durrow and 16kms South of Borris in Ossory.

Ballacolla’s sense of place and definition is formed around a group of late 19th and 20th Century 2 storey traditional buildings located at the four corners of the village crossroads. Natural stone walls forming boundaries along approach roads into the centre also add to this distinctive sense of place. The village core accommodates a shop, 3 local pubs and Glanbia while other essential services such as the church, school and community centre, GAA Pitches  are located further north and east on the approach roads.

8.2.2  REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing Land Requirement

The development of Ballacolla is dependent on the development of sufficient water and waste water infrastructure to adequately service the village and the level of residential development is limited by this fact. Only natural/organic residential growth will be encouraged over the lifetime of the Plan in line with the Core Strategy. However appropriate small scale infill residential development could readily integrate with the existing built environment to consolidate the urban form of the village, east of the community centre and directly north of the existing housing estate.

Village Centre Regeneration

Regeneration opportunity is limited by the rural nature of this settlement, it is a priority of this Plan to enhance the settlement structure by facilitating improved local service provision within the village core supporting public realm enhancement in terms of tree planting, biodiversity planting and  greening of the approach routes and the village centre public area.

The reuse of the former national school located on the Abbeyleix Road also has the potential to deliver positive social and economic benefits for the local community. A community garden has already been put in place by members of the community. Any development proposals should retain the existing vernacular structure.

8.2.3  WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Sustainable Development and Regeneration

BA 1       Maintain and improve village welcome signage and planting of native trees at the approaches to the village to encourage a sense of place.

BA 2       Retain and enhance the village character features such as natural stone walls on approach roads.

BA 3       Encourage the restoration or redevelopment of derelict or vacant properties in the village centre.

 

Economic Development

BA 4       Facilitate enterprise and employment development on allocated lands to the east of the settlement.

BA 5       Promote Grantstown Nature Reserve as a tourism destination from within the village;

BA 6       Support the retention of and Facilitate the expansion of village centre uses appropriate to scale of development within the village of Ballacolla and subject to planning and development standards;

 

Infrastructure

BA 7       Implement incremental improvements to the existing road network;

BA 8       Protect and retain the range of community services within Ballacolla;

BA 9       Support the reuse of the Old School House for a community / social enterprise use.

 

8.3      CAMROSS

Population by ED

(Marymount)

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

139

137

+1%

Housing Stock by ED

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

57

58

Infrastructure

Water

 

 

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Camross is served by private well water supply. A possible public water supply has been identified on the Local Authority land on the eastern end of the village.

Applied for funding for WWTP

Local Roads

Shall be serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

Camross NS (enrolment 100)

RC Church

Camross GAA (outside village boundary)

Crèche, Community Hall, pub, Community Garden

Environment/Heritage

Conservation

 

 

Flooding

A tributary, River Delour, of the Barrow/Nore SAC (002162) runs to the east of the village. The Slieve Bloom Mounts SPA (004160) are also located 2km west of the village

Not applicable

Sustainable Transport

Bus Services

Cycle Routes

Bi Weekly Local Link service to Portlaoise

Destination along Slieve Bloom Bike Trail and Village Route

Cultural Heritage

Protected Structures

Monument

RPS 372 St Kevin’s RC Church

LA00572 – settlement

8.3.1  CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

Camross is a small picturesque village located within the foothills of the Slieve Bloom Mountains, 10km northwest of Mountrath. The village developed in a linear pattern along a local road where old stone walls and vernacular dwellings add to the character of the village. The Georgian Gothic St Kevin’s Church, which is now in a ruined state, is a strong architectural focal point within the village.

Despite its limited size and population, Camross has a strong community sector and relatively healthy service base including RC Church, national school, public house, Poet’s Cottage with the newly-built community hall and a crèche. Recreational space is located within the school playing fields and Camross GAA grounds (which is located 3km from the village).

The community has also done extensive on work on creating a community garden and walking loop adjacent to the River Delour and backland areas on Parish lands.

8.3.2  REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing Land Requirement

Most residential development in the village takes the form of one-off houses served by individual septic tanks, with a small low density housing estate located on the eastern approach to the village. The village is not serviced by public water and waste water infrastructure which limits the capacity of the village to accommodate future housing needs. Only natural/organic residential growth will be encouraged over the lifetime of the Plan  in line with the Core Strategy. However appropriate small scale infill residential development could readily integrate with the existing built environment to consolidate the urban form of the village.

Village Centre Regeneration and Community Development

In recent years, community development has been a priority in the village. The Camross Parish Development Association, in association with the community, prepared a non-statutory Camross Community Development Plan in 2019 which has informed the policy objectives of this plan. Of particular note, the community has worked extensively on completing a community garden, a multipurpose community hall at Poet’s Cottage which will act as a village hub and enhancement of the Littler River Delour.

The main priority project noted in the Camross Village Plan is to develop a village hub that will function as a multipurpose recreational space, providing new enhanced facilities for the community. This priority project will link the existing Poets Cottage with the new building to the rear by developing a courtyard area that can also function as a new public space. It is also envisaged that the development of the Village Hub will also link to the evolving village open greenspace area located to the rear of the school and connecting to the River Delour.

Camross is also noted as being a destination on the Slieve Bloom Village Route. Enhanced services and public realm is encouraged to enhance tourism potential for the village.

8.3.3  WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Sustainable Development and Regeneration

CM 1      Protect (RPS 372) from endangerment and secure the longevity of this architectural focal point;

CM 2      Support the development of a village hub and Poet’s Cottage  as identified in the Camross Village Plan with key stakeholders;

CM 3      Support the objectives of the Camross Village Plan insofar as practicable, and in particular the development of a Village Park which will incorporate enhanced sports pitches, looped walkway and enhanced riverside walk with key stakeholders, subject to the requirements of the Habitats Directive;

CM 4      Support the community in securing funding for progressing the Smart Village concept;

 

Economic Development

CM5       Support the existing uses within the village such as the public house use and encourage the development of mixed uses such as the local shop subject to development management standards; 

CM 6      Develop commercial tourism facilities to take advantage of the Poet’s Cottage and the villages location on the Slieve Bloom Village Route and Slieve Blooms Bike Trail;

 

Infrastructure

CM 7      Improve public realm within the village and in particular footpaths and public lighting;

 

8.4      CASTLETOWN

Population

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

436

418

+4%

Housing Stock

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

165

8

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

 

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Public Mains

Sewage treatment facilities are deficient and in need of upgrading (69 PE capacity)

R445

Partially serviced and remaining areas serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

Castletown NS (enrolment 120)

RC Church

Tennis Court, Golf Course, River Nore, Castletown GAA, handball alley, playground

2 Community Hall, 2no. of pubs, Community Garden/Orchard

Environment /Heritage

Conservation

 

Flooding

The River Nore SPA (004233) and River Barrow/Nore SAC (002163) runs to the north of the village centre

FRA Zone A and B associated with the River Nore SPA to the north of the village

Sustainable Transport

Bus Services

Cycle Routes

Bi Weekly Local Link service to Portlaoise

Destination along Slieve Bloom Bike Trail

Cultural Heritage

Protected Structures

Architectural Conservation Area

National Monuments

10 Protected Structure

Castletown ACA

5 National Monuments

8.4.1  CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

The picturesque Georgian village of Castletown framed by the River Nore and old castle walls forming the northern boundary to the village, is located close to the old N7 (Dublin-Limerick) road, the R445, approximately 2km south of Mountrath. This historic village can be traced back to the 12th Century where a castle was built by Hugh de Lacy and became the centre of an important Norman Borough.

The village has a well defined core, developed around the central green area with 2 and 3 storey period homes, the De La Salle Monastery and the parish church. The Main Street runs from the village Green to the entrance onto to the R445 to the east and is mainly characterised by residential development characterized by one off dwellings and low density housing schemes.

Other uses within the village core consist of small scale commercial such as the school buildings, village shop, 2 public houses and a funeral director.

Due to the significant cultural heritage, the village is designated an Architectural Conservation Area.

In terms of community recreation facilities, the village is well served by 2 community centres. Castletown also benefits from a number of passive open spaces including the focal point of the village green surrounded by mature trees and the River Nore amenity area including weir and mill race which forms the northern boundary. The riverside walk along the River Nore is accessible from this picnic area and extends upstream under and past the old N7. A golfcourse is also located downstream of the picnic area to the east of the village.

8.4.2  REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing Land Requirement

Population has increased 4% between 2011 and 2016 and therefore the Core Strategy indicates that a housing allocation of 45 units is required for Castletown. Adequate land has been indentified for residential development on lands at Churchfield which would consolidate residential development in the area. This site currently accommodates 5 existing dwellings built on serviced site. There is approximately 1.15ha of land remaining. It is an objective of this Plan to support and promote the development of these sites as an alternative to one off housing in the rural area.

Village Centre Regeneration and Community Development

In recent years, community development has been a priority in the village. The community has prepared the non statutory Castletown Smart Environment and Sustainability Plan which highlighted the following objectives: connection to Slieve Bloom Biking Trail, provision of a digital hub, extension of the community centre, provide a looped walk along the River Nore and develop the Castletown – Mountrath Cycle Route. This Plan supports the sustainable development of the village.

In terms of regeneration within the village, the old corn mill on the banks of the River Nore presents a significant opportunity. This site provides an impressive approach to the village centre and comprises of a 19th Century corn mill (5 storey structure) and its surrounding outbuildings. The structure is a protected structure and requires significant redevelopment to bring it back into use. The overall complex is circa 0.25ha and is zoned for village centre development. The potential for development or reuse within the spheres of enterprise/employment, tourism, sport and recreation should be further explored in the context of regeneration of this site. Any potential development within this complex should have regard to the requirement to respect the architectural and cultural heritage and conservation and flood risk within the setting of the River Nore SAC.

Fig 8.4: Opportunity Site

8.4.3  WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Sustainable Development and Regeneration

CAS 1     Preserve and enhance the special character and appearance of Castletown’s Architectural Conservation Area (ACA) by requiring that the height, scale, design and materials of any proposed development within the village and in the surrounding area should complement the character of the village and not diminish its distinctiveness of place.  New buildings should respond to the individual site context and take due cognisance of adjoining development.

CAS 2     Protect and preserve trees on all approach roads and the central green area of the village centre.

CAS 3     Support the redevelopment of the mill building as indicated as Opportunity Site 1 in Map 8.4(b) for active use subject to proper planning and sustainable development and design standards and flooding related policies given that the structure is located within flood zone A;

CAS 4     Support the development of serviced sites  within the village.

CAS 5     Support a conservation study of the Castle walls and Turret;

 

Economic/Community Development

CAS 6     Support the functioning of and facilitate the expansion of Castletown as a centre for retail, commercial, institutional and community uses.

CAS 7     Promote and facilitate development of the tourism product offered in Castletown having regard to its architectural/cultural heritage,  location on the River Nore SAC and proximity to the Slieve Blooms.

CAS 8     Promote and develop Castletown as a multi experience tourism destination for visitors to Ireland’s Ancient East and attractions in the County;

CAS 9     Support the development of a remote working /digital opportunities in Castletown.

CAS 10   Improve village branding/presentation along main roads and at village entry points to strengthen Castletown’s sense of place and unique identity

CAS 11   Support the objectives of the Castletown Smart Environment and Sustainability Plan insofar as practicable.

 

Infrastructure

CAS 12   Improve pedestrian linkages within the village centre and facilitate the provision of cycle parking, especially at schools.

CAS 13 Facilitate the improvement of pedestrian and cyclist routes within the village and River Nore amenity area having regard to its environmental sensitivities;

CAS 14   Provide seating areas within the main green and the River Nore amenity area;

CAS 15   Encourage the placing of overhead power lines underground to enhance the character of the ACA and examine the feasibility of providing underground broadband cable in association with the above works;

CAS 16   Support the preparation of a feasibility study for a walking loop along the River Nore and safe cycling route to Mountrath town centre.

CAS 17   Support the community in preparing a study to determine the feasibility of introducing more renewable energy sources into the community.

 

8.5      COOLRAIN

Population by ED

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

302

308

-2%

Housing Stock by ED

2016 Census

2011 Census

121

119

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Private wells

Septic Tank / Waste Water Treatment Systems

Local road

Shall be serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

NA

NA

NA

2 Pubs, playground

Environment /Heritage

Conservation

 

Flooding

1.5km east of Coolrain Bog SAC (pNHA), 1.5km west of Knockacoller Bog SAC (pNHA) and River Barrow/Nore SAC to the north

FRZ A and B to the north of the development boundary

Sustainable Transport

Bus Services

Cycle Routes

NA

NA

Cultural Heritage

Protected Structures

National Monuments

1

0

8.5.1  CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

Coolrain is a picturesque village situated in the mid-west of the County in the foothills of the Slieve Blooms, 6km west of Mountrath, 7km north east of Borris in Ossory and approximately 9km from the M7/M8 motorway. The village developed in a linear pattern along a local road where a number of traditional single and two storey vernacular buildings have been located, including single storey thatched cottages which contribute significantly to the distinctiveness of the settlement. Traditional boundary treatments consisting of natural stone walls are located on the approaches into the village core.

8.5.2  REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing Land Requirements

Coolrain has experienced a limited amount of development due to lack of critical infrastructure such as public water and waste water. There is also a notable lack of social infrastructure present, where the village depends on neighbouring villages of Camross and Castletown and larger town of Mountrath for access to commercial services and community facilities.

 Coolrain has also been identified for investment in public services in Irish Water’s Small Towns and Villages Growth Programme.

Only natural/organic residential growth will be encouraged over the lifetime of the Plan in line with the Core Strategy. However appropriate small scale infill residential development or serviced sites could readily integrate with the existing built environment on village centre lands to consolidate the urban form of the village, subject to upgrade of infrastructure.

Village Centre Regeneration

The village’s greatest asset is its location within the Slieve Bloom Village Drive and proximity to the natural amenity areas including Coolrain Bog SAC (pNHA) to the west, Knockacoller Bog SAC (pNHA) to the east and is bound to the north by a tributary of the River Barrow/Nore SAC which is located further south. Enhanced branding, local services and public realm are encouraged to enhance tourism potential for the village.

8.5.3  WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Sustainable Development and Regeneration

COOL1                  Support appropriate infill development to consolidate Main Street and backland development to the east of the Main Street;

COOL2                  Ensure development along the Main Street is sympathetic to the vernacular character of the village;

 

Economic/Community Development

COOL3                  Support the existing uses within the village such as the public house use and encourage the development of mixed uses such as the local shop subject to development management standards; 

COOL4                  Develop commercial tourism facilities to take advantage of the village’s location on the Slieve Bloom Village Drive;

COOL5                  Support the establishment of additional community services;

 

Infrastructure

COOL6                  Provide a direct pedestrian link between the main street and the monuments at Anatrim by way of backland development if the opportunities arise;

COOL7                  Improve incrementally the existing road network;

COOL8                  Provide disabled parking within the village centre;

COOL9                  Ensure that new housing has sufficient wastewater treatment facilities and conditions of maintenance attached;

 

8.6      CULLAHILL

Population

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

357

359

-1%

Housing Stock

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

132

131

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Group Water Supply Scheme

Private wastewater treatment systems.

R639

Shall be serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

Scoil Tíghearnach Noafa Ns (Enrolment 99)

St Tighearnach’s Church

The Harps GAA, Durrow

Shop, post office, pub, garage, community centre, recycling facility, crèche

Environment /Heritage

Conservation

Flooding

3km north of Cullohill Mountain SAC

Not Applicable

Sustainable Transport

Bus Services

Cycle Routes

NA

South Laois Cycle Route

Cultural Heritage

Protected Structures

Monuments

2

6

8.6.1  CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

Cullahill is located in south County Laois, 5 kilometres southwest of Durrow along the R639. The settlement extends onto two local roads to the northwest and a local road to the southeast. The village centre is disjointed with its focal point formed by the presence of a shop and filling station, community hall, recycling bring bank, public house and agricultural supplies outlet.

A church and primary school are located to the northwest outside the settlement boundary. Defining features of Cullahill include the dramatic topography to the south east where a 15th Century Tower House is located in the foothills of the Cullahill Mountains. The rural nature of the village is also seen in the natural stone boundary walls along the north western approach.

8.6.2  REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITY

Housing  Land Requirements

Cullahill has experienced only a very limited amount of development in recent years, mainly in the form of one-off dwellings on individual septic tanks located primarily on its southwestern outskirts. At the same time, some properties in the centre of the village have fallen into disuse and dereliction.  Only natural/organic residential growth will be encouraged over the lifetime of the Plan in line with the Core Strategy. However appropriate small scale infill residential development could readily integrate with the existing built environment on village centre lands to consolidate the urban form of the village. There are also a number of vacant units and derelict dwellings within the village core which could offer potential residential redevelopment opportunities.

Village Centre Regeneration and Community Development

The village has a proactive community which is demonstrated in the Cullahill Community Plan 2018. This plan has focused on priority projects for the village and include inter alia:

  1. Refurbishment and extension of the existing community centre to accommodate meeting space, enterprise space and sports and recreation;
  2. A need for a multi-purpose sports facility accommodating a range of field sports close to the village core;
  3. Development of co-working space possibly in a vacant unit in the village core;
  4. Develop the tourism potential of the area;
  5. Additional sports and recreation facilities.

Tourism

The village has significant potential to develop a tourism based on day trippers for active tourism. There is a well established walking trail on Cullahill Mountain which has a way marked looped trail from the trailhead in the village. The area also has potential as a cycling hub - Five routes ranging from 8.6km to 48.4km have been developed by South Laois Tourism in conjunction with Laois Partnership, Laois County Council and Failte Ireland and includes Cullahill, Durrow, Ballacolla, Attanagh and Ballinakill.

There are also a number of historical and archaeological sites that would attract an interest from a number of tourism market segments. Opposite the Castle are the ruins of an old chapel which was the private chapel of the Catholic lords of Upper Ossory. There is a fine example of a lime kiln on the green opposite Cullohill Castle. Such significant heritage sites could form part of a Heritage Trail and be marketed on Ireland’s Ancient East Route.

8.6.3  WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Character and Built Form

CU 1       Consolidate the urban structure of the village by way of infill development;

CU 2       Encourage the restoration or redevelopment of derelict or vacant structures within the village centre;

CU 3       Provide additional landscaping features and welcome signs incorporating natural materials on the approach roads to the village;

CU 4       Housing developments shall be of a density compatible with the prevailing density of the village;

 

Economic and Community Development

CU5        Support the existing retail and commercial uses within the village and facilitate their expansion subject to proper planning and sustainable development and design standards;

CU6        Support the objectives of the Cullahill Community Plan 2018 insofar as possible and in accordance with the proper planning and sustainable development of the area;

CU 7       Support the enhancement of the community centre as a multi-functional facilities for community recreation and enterprise;

CU 8       Facilitate the development of additional passive recreation facilities in the village such as a village park and sensory garden within the central amenity area;

CU 9       Facilitate the development of tourist related enterprise within the village and enhance the branding of active tourism such as walking and cycling associated with Cullahill Mountains and South Laois Cycle Routes;

 

Infrastructure

CU 10    Enhance and extend the footpath within the village centre and to the school and provide safe pedestrian crossing within the village;

CU 11    Provide a pedestrian crossing to the R639 within the village centre;

CU 12    Secure cycle parking facilities at the national school and community centre;

CU 13    Provide designated car and coach parking at the community centre

 

8.7      EMO

Population

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

257

245

5%

Housing Stock

 

2016 Census

Vacancy

95

6

Infrastructure

Water

 

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

The present public water scheme is supplied from the Kilminchy reservoir.

Emo does not have its own wastewater treatment plant.

R422

Shall be serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

Emo National School (enrolment 209)

St Paul’s Church RC

GAA pitches, passive recreation in Emo Court

Pub/restaurant, shop, HSE health centre, childcare/community centre

Environment /Heritage

Conservation

Flooding

pNHA Emo Court

Not Applicable

Sustainable Transport

Bus Services

Cycle Routes

Regional College Services and Local Link

NA

Cultural Heritage

Protected Structures

Monuments

2

2

8.7.1  CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

Emo is located in northeast County Laois on the R422 Regional Road, with convenient access to the M8 serving Dublin, Cork and Limerick. Emo’s most distinctive feature is the James Gandon designed Emo Court and Park dating to 1790, located to the east of the village centre. Emo Court is one of the finest stately homes in Ireland and a noted destination on the Failte Ireland’s Ancient East route planner.

The picturesque village developed around the central crossroads where many traditional two storey and single storey buildings formed along the approach roads. The village core accommodates the retail, pub and institutional needs, including a primary school, RC church and health centre. In terms of community facilities, the old school house is used as a childcare facility and also as a community centre for a youth club and active retirement group.

Emo Court provides accessible passive open space and walking routes while active public open space is found at the GAA playing fields. The amenities include a playing pitch, dressing and meeting rooms.

8.7.2  REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing Land Requirement

Whilst the village itself has not seen significant development due to lack of public infrastructure in terms of waste water treatment, the surrounding area is noted as an area under strong urban influence where there has been significant pressure from one off rural dwellings.

This Plan supports the development of serviced sites in rural towns and villages in line with the Core Strategy. Laois County Council and Irish Water are currently reviewing the Small Town and Villages Growth Programme, of which Emo has been identified for investment in a waste water treatment plant to service the village. In this regard appropriate land has been identified for the provision of serviced site on land identified which would provide an alternative to one off dwellings in the rural countryside.

Village Centre Regeneration and Economic Development

Emo village is ideally located at the entrance to Emo Court Demesne, one of the County’s most popular tourist attractions and a noted attraction within Ireland’s Ancient East route. The development of Emo for tourist related/arts and cultural purpose is supported in this Plan where land has been zoned for such uses on the approach to Emo Court. An area of land to the rear of the village shop, zoned for village centre uses, also has potential to create additional supporting services or tourist accommodation.

8.7.3  WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Character and Built Form

EO 1       Designate an ACA within Emo and have regard to the special character appraisal in the determination of planning applications or the carrying out of works to the public realm;

EO 2       Structures and features demonstrating the historical development of Emo Court including stone walls, stone dwellings and associated outbuildings should be retained, restored, preserved and enhanced;

EO 3       Ensure infill development is sensitive to the special architectural context;

EO 4       Explore the feasibility of providing serviced sites within the village settlement on land indicated as Residential 2.

 

Economic Development

EO 5       Support the existing commercial services within the village core and facilitate their expansion subject to proper planning and sustainable development and design standards;

EO 6       Support and facilitate the development of tourism and tourist related infrastructure and facilities within the village, in particular Ireland’s Ancient East branding and the development of Emo Court;

 

Infrastructure

EO 7       Provide a pedestrian and cycle link between the village centre and the school and playing pitches and secure cycle parking at these community buildings;

EO 8       Provide disabled parking within the village centre and at the school;

EO 9       Encourage the enhancement of community services and the more active use of the centre;

EO 10     Support the provision of a recycling bring bank in the village centre.

 

8.8      NEWTOWN DOONANE

Population

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

269

246

9%

Housing Stock

 

26 Census

Vacancy

111

9

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Swan Water Supply

Waste water treatment

R430

Partially serviced and remaining areas shall be serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

Newtown National School (enrolment 53)

Doonane Church is located 1.5km south west

Crettyyard GAA pitch located 2km north east

Community centre/playschool, credit union (pub, recycling centre further east in Crettyard)

Environment /Heritage

Conservation

Flooding

2km east of River Barrow/Nore SAC 002162

NA

8.8.1  CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

Newtown Doonane is located in southeast County Laois in close proximity to the Carlow/Kildare border. The village has formed in a linear pattern along the R430 Carlow-Abbeyleix regional road and stretches in a north-east direction along the N78. Development in the village has occurred in a dispersed fashion rather than in a compact village form. The village core centres around the primary school, community centre, credit union. Recycling facilities, a public house and an established industrial unit are located at the crossroads further east (which lies outside the settlement boundary of this village plan).

 

Outside of the village area is the church in Doonane which serves the area. A GAA pitch is located along the N78, north of the village. The GAA grounds include two playing fields and basic dressing room facilities. A small area of passive open space is located at the crossroads and within housing estates.

8.8.2  REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing Land Requirement

The capacity to accommodate multi house residential development is low because of its limited service capacity, however appropriate infill development could readily integrate with the existing built form and natural environment. Due to the size of Newtown Doonane and the close proximity of larger urban settlements, the facilities available are considered to be adequate at present and village will remain a small scale village settlement in the settlement hierarchy of the Plan.

Village Centre Regeneration

This Plan will support the expansion of existing community facilities in the village. Additional public realm improvements such as greening and tree planting will also be encouraged to add to the sense of place of the village.

8.8.3  WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Sustainable Development and Regeneration

ND 1      Consolidate the urban form by way of infill development that encloses the principal thoughfare of the village using shared vehicular access points, where possible;

ND 2      Maintain the modest scale of buildings within the village centre;

ND 3      Improve the public realm and streetscape to enhance the village core character, and improve the village aesthetics;

 

Economic/Community Development

ND 4      Support appropriate rural economic development and diversification within the hinterland and support the modest expansion of existing uses;

ND 5      Harness the economic potential associated with the proximity of the village to the national road network;

ND 6      Enhance community and recreational uses including support for the development of a village green/pocket park within the village.

 

Infrastructure

ND 7      Improve the cycling and pedestrian network within the village core and between the GAA grounds to the north of the village;

ND 8      Provide for traffic calming within the village centre;

ND 9      Enhance the modal interchange point at the lay-by opposite the public house.

 

8.9      ROSENALLIS

Population

Estimate – No Census details available

130

Housing Stock

Estimate

51

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

GWS

Unserviced, individual treatment systems

R422

Partially serviced and remaining areas shall be serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

Primary School

Catholic Church, Church of Ireland Church

Crettyyard GAA pitch located 2km north east

Hairdressers, public house, community centre, crèche 

Sustainable Tranport

Bus Service

Cycle Corridor

Local Link

N/A

Environment /Heritage

Conservation

 

Flooding

Located within the foothills of the Slieve Bloom Mountains SPA

FRZ A located to the west of the village centre

8.9.1  CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

Rosenallis is located on the Regional Road (R422) between Mountmellick and Clonaslee in the foothills of the Slieve Bloom Mountains. Its origins dates back to the early Christian settlement, however later developed as a Quaker colony and linen centre. The Church of Ireland presents the most distinctive architectural element and focal point within the village.

The core of the village centres around two public houses and residential dwelling forming a well defined streetscape. A passive green space area with a miniature ornamental thatched cottage also functions as a picnic area. The village further developed to west with residential development and community facilities.

In terms of social infrastructure, there is a national school, community centre and GAA grounds and both Catholic and Church of Ireland Churches. Local services are limited and consist of a hairdressers and public house.

8.9.2  REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing Land Requirement

The capacity to accommodate multi house residential development is low due to limited service capacity, however appropriate infill development could readily integrate with the existing built form and natural environment. Only natural/organic residential growth will be encouraged over the lifetime of the Plan in line with the Core Strategy.

Village Centre Regeneration

There is high level of vacancy within the village core and opportunity exists to reuse and regenerate the existing building stock for residential purposes and commercial purposes within village centre zoning as indicated in Fig 8.9. 

An opportunity to build on the tourism potential and natural features of its unique location within the foothills of the Slieve Bloom Mountains is to be encouraged. The village could be developed as a local tourist stop off within the area whereby additional tourist related facilities and accommodation could be provided.

Fig 8.9: Regeneration Opportunity Sites

8.9.3  WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Character and Built Form

ROS1     Provide landscaping features and welcome signage incorporating natural materials on approach roads;

ROS2     Encourage the restoration or redevelopment of derelict, vacant or underused structures, as appropriate and indicated in Map 8.9(b) of the Plan;

ROS3     Ensure consolidation of the built environment through appropriate and sensitive infill development;

 

Economic Development

ROS5     Encourage the use of the lands that have been zoned for tourism to the south of the village on the road to the Glenbarrow eco-walk for tourism amenities;

ROS6     Protect existing retail and commercial uses;

 

Infrastructure

ROS7     Provide and maintain dedicated pedestrian and cycling linkages between the town centre, the community uses and the shop to the west;

ROS8     Provide disabled parking within the village centre and at buildings in community use to the west of the village centre;

ROS9     Protect and make the best use of existing social infrastructure;

ROS10   Improve road network incrementally.

 

8.10   THE SWAN

Population

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

216

213

1.5%

Housing Stock

 

2016 Census

Vacancy

71

9

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

 

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Swan water supply

35 PE

R430

Partially serviced and remaining areas shall be serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

 

Other

Scoil and Chroi Ro Naofa NS (enrolment 31)

Doonane Church is located 4km south Crettyyard GAA pitch located 4km south

Community centre/playschool, credit union (pub, recycling centre further east in Crettyard)

Environment /Heritage

Conservation

Flooding

 

Monuments

2km east of River Barrow/Nore SAC 002162

Flood Zones A and B runs through the village in a west/east trajectory

2

8.10.1 CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

The Swan is located on the Regional Road (R430) between Abbeyleix and Carlow. The River Clough runs to the north west of the settlement boundary. The village’s growth formed along the R430 in a linear patterned and centred on the establishment in 1935 of Flemings Fireclay factory which utilised the local fireclay reserves and is one of the local economy’s biggest employers. This village core and most distinctive feature is a small council housing estate arranged in a semi-circle around a small green.

Many of the buildings have also been constructed using the redbrick which adds to the unique sense of place.  The Swan has a low level of services and facilities. The only commercial service in the village is a vacant public house which is located towards western perimeter of the village core. There are a number of community uses within the village including a school, community centre and recycling bring bank. The HSE clinic is currently vacant. The green open spaces in the Swan are passive in nature and are associated with residential housing estates.

8.10.2 REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing Land Requirement

The capacity to accommodate multi house residential development is low because of its limited service capacity, however appropriate infill development could readily integrate with the existing built form and natural environment. The Plan will also support the completion of the existing housing estate to the south west of the settlement boundary.

Village Centre Regeneration

Due to the size of The Swan and the close proximity of larger urban settlements, the facilities available are considered to be adequate at present and village will remain a small scale village settlement in the settlement hierarchy of the Plan. This Plan will support the expansion  of existing social infrastructure within the village and in particular  extension to the community centre and Multi Use Games Area (MUGA).

Community Development

The community of The Swan has recently prepared the Sustainable Community Plan which provides strategic objectives for the settlement, including, inter alia:

  • Upgrade to the Swan Community Centre
  • Improve safety and security within the village
  • Improvements to public realm
  • Establish the Swan as a Smart Village

8.10.3             WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Sustainable Development and Regeneration

SW 1      Encourage the use of the locally produced red brick in future developments in order to reinforce the distinctive character of The Swan;

SW 2      Protect recorded monuments in The Swan;

SW 3      Support the completion of any unfinished sites within Carmallagh housing estate;

 

Economic and Community Development

SW 4      Support the maintenance and establishment of commercial services at The Swan;

SW 5      Support the continuing functioning of the Fireclay factory and provide for its expansion as necessary subject to proper planning and environmental standards being met;

SW 6      Support appropriate after uses within the quarry area;

SW 7      Support the objectives of The Swan Sustainable Community Plan insofar as practicable;

 

Infrastructure

SW 8      Improve or develop footpaths and cycle paths linking the village centre with residential housing estates and community uses;

SW 9      Develop a pedestrian crossing within the village centre, connecting the school to residential development on the west side of the R430.

 

8.11   TIMAHOE

Population

(Doonane ED)

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

589

569

4%

Housing Stock

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

207

199

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Public Water supply

Unserviced, individual treatment systems

R426

Partially serviced and remaining areas shall be serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

Mhuire Fatima NS (enrolment 147)

RC Church

GAA pitch located 4km south

Community centre/playshcool, credit union (pub, recycling centre further east in Crettyard)

Environment

Conservation

 

Flooding

Timahoe Esker pNHA 1km north west

Ballyprior Grassland SAC 5km north east

Much of the village lies within Flood Zones A and B

Cultural Heritage

Architectural Conservation Area

Protected Structures

Monuments

Yes

5

9

8.11.1            CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

The village of Timahoe is located on R426, Portlaoise to The Swan regional road, in a broad and fertile valley between Fossey and Cullenagh Mountains, 12km to the south of Portlaoise. The village has a significant built and cultural heritage where its origins can be traced back to the 7th century where a monastery was founded by St. Mochua. It was later refounded by the O'Moores where it remained a monastic community until 1650. One of the finest round towers in Ireland, dating to the mid 12th century, remains intact within this monastic site, standing some 30m high and creating a dramatic backdrop to the village centre. Sites of interest in the area include a castle, built by Hugh de Lacy in 1189. A stream separates the round tower and church from the village green and these two elements are connected with a pedestrian bridge and vehicular road.

The village centre has a cohesive urban form, where 2 storey and single storey vernacular buildings provide a strong building line around a large central green (Goosegreen) and connection to the well-preserved Medieval round tower, create the special character of the village.

The traditional character of the village is also reinforced with the traditional painted timber shopfronts with restrained lettering. The approach roads are well signposted and the presence of trees on the Portlaoise Road softens the approach to the village and creates a pleasant vista. As such, the village is designated as a Candidate Architectural Conservation Area.

In terms of social infrastructure, the village is well facilitated. There is a primary school with associated playing fields, crèche, RC church, recycling facilities and a substantial community centre which caters for a wide catchment area. GAA playing fields are located outside the development envelop 1km north of the village. The village is well-served in relation to passive green open space in the form of a landscaped central green. Vacant premises exist in the village which should be encouraged for redevelopment to appropriate uses particularly the old HSE building off the Green and the old garage.

8.11.2             REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing requirements

The capacity to accommodate multi house residential development is low, however there is an area to the north east of the village settlement identified for low density housing or serviced sites which would consolidate development with existing residential development in the village. Due to the size of Timahoe and the close proximity of larger urban settlements, the facilities available are considered to be adequate at present and village will remain a small scale village settlement in the settlement hierarchy of the Plan and as indicated in the Core Strategy.

Village Centre Regeneration

A significant opportunity also exists to further promote Timahoe as a tourist destination or hub for visitors to Ireland’s Ancient East and encourage appropriate development of an integrated tourism product at Timahoe Round Tower and Monastic Settlement. A site has also been identified for tourism development which could facilitate tourist infrastructure such as accommodation, interpretative centre and supporting commercial services.

8.11.3             WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Sustainable Development and Regeneration

TM 1      Preserve and enhance the special character and appearance of Timahoe’s Candidate Architectural Conservation Area (ACA) by requiring that the height, scale, design and materials of any proposed development within the village and in the surrounding area should complement the character of the village and not diminish its distinctiveness of place.  New buildings should respond to the individual site context and take due cognisance of adjoining development.

TM 2      Require all development proposals within or contiguous to the Architectural Conservation Area be sympathetic to the character of the area, that the design is appropriate in terms of height, scale, plot density, layout, materials and finishes and is appropriately sited and designed in accordance with advice given in  Timahoe Architectural Conservation Area Character Statement.

TM 3      Protect and preserve trees on the Portlaoise approach roads, and landscaping and ornamental features on the central green and mature trees in and around the round tower;

TM 4      Encourage the full use of vacant or underused structures, in particular any structures overlooking the central green;

TM 5      Introduce consistent village branding/presentation at the village entry points and along main streets in form of high quality signage, tourism information, public art and consistent village type lighting standards which would strengthen Timahoe’s identity

TM 6      Seek to preserve views identified on the land use zoning map from development which would adversely impact on the character and visual amenity of the Round Tower

TM 7      Require the preservation and reinstatement of traditional details and materials on existing buildings and the streetscape where improvements or maintenance works are being carried out.

 

Economic/Community Development

TM 8      Protect the established retail and commercial functions within the village;

TM 9      Promote the tourism product offered in Timahoe having regard to its archaeological and architectural heritage, proximity to the Timahoe Nature Reserve and walking routes and Fossey and Cullenagh Mountains;

TM 10    Promote Timahoe Round Tower as a multi experience tourism destination for visitors to Ireland’s Ancient East and attraction in the County, subject to the normal development management standards.  Seek to support and develop Timahoe as a tourist hub.

TM 11    Improve village branding/presentation along main roads and at village entry points to strengthen Timahoe’s sense of place and unique identity.

 

Infrastructure

TM 12    Support the provision of wastewater treatment at Timahoe;

TM 13    Encourage the placing of overhead power lines underground to enhance the character of the ACA and examine the feasibility of providing underground broadband cable in association with the above works;

TM 14    Establish a footpath and cycle path between the village centre and the school and ensure the provision of cycle parking at the school;

TM 15    Provide disabled parking within the village centre.

 

8.12   VICARSTOWN

Population by ED

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

% Increase/Decrease

194

206

4%

Housing Stock by ED

 

2016 Census

2011 Census

77

80

Infrastructure

Water

Waste Water

Servicing Road Network

Broadband

Kyle Public Water Supply

Private waste water treatment systems

R427

Partially serviced and remaining areas shall be serviced under the National Broadband Plan

Social Infrastructure

School

 

Church

Sporting Facilities

Other

Closest schools located in Stradbally, Rath, Portlaoise, Mountrath and Monasterevin

RC Church

GAA pitch

Community centre, 2no of pubs, bike hire, barge hire

Environment

Conservation

Flooding

Grand Canal NHA

NA

Sustainable Transport

Public Transport

Transport for Ireland Town link to Portlaoise bi weekly

Cultural Heritage

Architectural Conservation Area

Protected Structures

Monuments

Yes

6

9

8.12.1 CHARACTER AND CONTEXT

Vicarstown Village is located in east County Laois, 6 kilometres north east of Stradbally on the R427 Regional Road. The village originally developed as an 18th Century port on the Grand Canal and is popular for waterway-based tourism such as boating and fishing.

The village core is focused adjacent to the Grand Canal where a number of historic canal warehouses were built in the 1800s. These 2 storey structures are now used for local enterprise and tourism purposes associated with renting barges for tours on the Grand Canal.

The village developed further west of the canal where a public house and residential development consisting of one off dwellings of varying types and a low density housing scheme have been constructed. Further development along this approach road also consists of focal points such as the Catholic Church and Old School House and Annanough GAA Club. 

The most distinguishing feature of the village is undoubtedly the Grand Canal National Heritage Area which links to the Stradbally River SAC at Cormac Aqueduct. The tow path along the canal provides an extensive walking and cycling network immediately accessible from the village and is part of the Barrow Blueway network. Active recreational space can also be found at the GAA playing fields located to the west of the village which consist of two playing fields, dressing rooms and meeting room facilities. The clubhouse also functions as a multifunctional communal and recreational space. Similarly, the Old School House also provides for multifunctional communal and recreational needs of the community.

8.12.2             REGENERATION AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY

Housing requirements

Vicarstown[a7]  has not experienced growth similar to that which has occurred in other villages within the County, particularly in relation to residential development. In this regard the facilities available are considered to be adequate at present and the village will remain a small scale village settlement in the settlement hierarchy of the Plan. The capacity to accommodate multi house residential development is low, however appropriate infill development will be supported to consolidate development west of the village core in accordance with the Core Strategy of the Plan.

Village Centre Regeneration

The village has significant potential to expand and enhance tourism in the area based on the amenity of the Grand Canal and the Barrow Blueway and could act as a hub for active tourism such as boating, kayaking, canoeing, cycling and walking.

Fig 8.12: Opportunity Sites

Two opportunity sites have been identified for potential regeneration and development. The existing warehouses along the western banks of the canal indicated as Opportunity Site 1 offer significant opportunity for redevelopment for tourist related enterprise and already facilitate barge hire and bike hire. A derelict site on the eastern side of the canal indicated as Opportunity Site 2 also offers opportunity to accommodate active tourism facilities. It should also be noted, that, whilst not within the settlement boundary of this plan, a Viking Longphort settlement is located on the banks of the River Barrow at Dunrally. This settlement, although not formally developed as a tourist destination, has the potential to generate significant tourism within Ireland’s Ancient East destinations of which Vicarstown can gain significant footfall.

8.12.3             WRITTEN OBJECTIVES

Sustainable Development and Regeneration

VIC 1      Facilitate the re-use or redevelopment of derelict or vacant structures as appropriate;

VIC 2      Facilitate the regeneration and re-use of the cut-stone warehouses along the Grand Canal and derelict site noted as Opportunity Sites 1 and 2 indicated in Map 8.12(b);

VIC 3      Retain and maintain the stone walls within the village;

VIC 4      Protect trees and hedgerows on approach road from Stradbally;

VIC 5      Preserve and enhance Protected Structures in Vicarstown;

 

Economic/Community Development

VIC 7      Promote and facilitate development of the tourism product offered in Vicarstown having regard to its location on the Grand Canal and connection to the Barrow Blueway system and further east to Dunrally Longphort.

VIC 8      Promote Vicarstown as a multi experience tourism destination for visitors to Ireland’s Ancient East and attraction in the County, subject to the normal development management standards.  Seek to support and develop Vicarstown as an active tourism hub.

VIC 9      Encourage the provision of tourist related amenities / infrastructure within the village centre to compliment the natural tourism product of the Grand Canal;

VIC 10    Protect and enhance the established commercial functions within the village;

VIC 11    Improve village branding/presentation along main roads and at village entry points to strengthen Vicarstown sense of place and unique identity.

 

Infrastructure

VIC 12    Provide a pedestrian and cycle network within the village centre and between the village centre and the GAA playing fields and secure cycle parking at the playing fields and in the village centre;

VIC 13    Facilitate the improvement of cycle and pedestrian path along the tow path of the canal having regard to its environmental sensitivities;

VIC 14    Formalise parking along the southern side of the R427 to facilitate activities associated with the Grand Canal

Submissions