Ulster Canal: Cross-border site work gets green light

Ulster CanalImage source, Brian Cassells
Image caption,
The proposed site will follow the route along the Ulster Canal

Work on a cross-border section of the Ulster Canal has been given the green light by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council.

The proposed greenway site links the village of Middletown in County Armagh in Northern Ireland with the town of Monaghan in the Republic of Ireland.

The area will stretch from Ardgonnell Bridge, on the border at the River Cor, and Annagola Bridge in Middletown.

The council's planning committee approved the application on Tuesday.

The application seeks the creation of a 5m (16.4ft) wide corridor incorporating a granular surface course path, with an adjacent verge either side and timber guardrails.

It also seeks the creation of a parking and amenity area near Annagola Bridge.

Permission has also been sought to clear vegetation and make enhancement repairs to the listed lock-keepers house and historic bridge and lock at Foyduff, north of Monaghan Road in Middletown.

A planning application for the greenway site in the area was lodged in April last year.

Image caption,
The last boat sailed on the Ulster Canal in 1931 and it fell into disrepair as road and rail network improved

In a report presented to council members on Tuesday, officers said the application should be approved as they were of the belief the proposed development complies with the area plan.

The proposed area of development is about 10.1 hectares and the proposed greenway will measure 2.3km (1.4 miles). It follows the route of the Ulster Canal.

The proposal was put forward by Sinn Féin's Darren McNally and seconded by councillor Paul Duffy with the committee voicing its agreement.