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Speaking with the Wicklow Voice Cllr Tom Fortune says that Independent Councillors are vital for better local government, they are not  controlled by party whips and can think for themselves instead of been told what they must say and do politically.  We should not have national government replicated at local level. It would be far better for local democracy if it were not controlled by national parties. The party whip destroy’s local government and it is not good for democracy. It is my role to question all matters on behalf of the public and to only support what is in the interests of our communities. A councillor is vital to local democracy BUT you need to have an independent mind.

I am passionate about the District — Greystones— Kilcoole— Delgany— Newcastle— Kiladreenan,  I have and will continue to raise relevant issues.  The biggest satisfaction I get from my role as a councillor is that I have been able to help hundreds of people on a variety of matters. I like to help people. The system can sometimes be very unfair.

I have lots of area’s that I am interested in eg Education, Our Environment , Tourism, Housing, Mental Health. I am very focused on the delivery of the secondary school promised for Charlesland. By 2020/21 there will be no places for up to 400 second level school places, we need confirmation of the delivery timeline.  SNA issues need urgent attention eg Job security, Wages cap, there is a cap on their wages after 15 years, this is unfair, SNA’s have poor pensions which requires urgent attention. They feel as if they are invisible, they play a vital role and we urgently need more of them. This will also contribute greatly to better education.

Climate is one of our greatest challenge’s , urgent action is required. Our students are showing the way which is fantastic and gives great hope for our future. I am very interested and take a hand’s on approach. I am working in a number of ways.    IN my Professional life I have been involved in a business whose products reduce our carbon foot print. I have done this for a number of years.  I am working with a land owner to enable 55 acres of land become a Bee Sanctuary . This is vital, 2% of farmland is what is required to be returned to meadow allowing not only a halt in Bee population decline but commencement of recovery in numbers within 3 years. This equates to merely 1 in 50 acres. This will be the only dedicated Sanctuary for native wild Bee’s .   The Rock’s valley in Priestnewtown , an unique site of its kind in Europe , part of our local eco system , full of Bird and Bagger with loads of plant life in its natural habitat and including a underground stream that flows into breaches in Kilcoole and is of the Murrough system. I had proposal approved in WCC PLAN  which means this unique is a protected site. There is trespassers on the site and WCC really need to get it sorted , as what is currently going on is destruction of an unique protected site.

The fishermen men in Greystones are not able to use Greystones Harbour to carry out their work as fishermen. They were told at start of the harbour project that they would be facilitated in new development. This has not happened and there has been  massive issues with this for nearly ten years. This is unfair and must be sorted . I fully support the Fishermen’s position.

I am part of a mental health group and there is need for some level of free counselling and affordable counselling to be available. Affordable housing is an area that requires urgent attention. We need to allow young couples get mortgages approved based on the rents they are paying. If you are paying  1600— 1800 euro per month and can demonstrate a good payment record you should qualify for a mortgage without the need for a deposit. In most cases the mortgage repayment would be less than the rent payments they are paying.  There are loads of other areas , Footpaths, General Facilities, Traffic Congestion , Bus & Train Service.

As an I independent Councillor I seek what is right on your behalf. I bring my life experience to what I do and I ask the hard questions.

Thank your taking the time to read this. I’M asking everyone in the Greystones Municipal District to vote number 1 Cllr Tom Fortune on the 24th  of MAY.

Cllr Tom Fortune

Cllr Tom Fortune was elected Cathaoirleach off Greystones Municipal District at the AGM on Tuesday. Speaking with the Wicklow Voice following his election, he thanked his collogues for their support, he also thanked the municipal staff for all the backup they provide.

Cllr Fortune says there are many issues that require attention and is looking forward to working with his collogues to make them happen and come up with solutions.

Access for the fishermen to Greystones harbour is urgent and must be resolved over the next few weeks. The proposed developed in the centre of Kilcoole village if developed as planned will destroy the village, this must be altered to ensure this does not happen. A footpath to the train station in Kilcoole is urgently required. The commencement of the Delgany and Kilincarrig village improvements . Work on footpaths in Kilpedder and solution to the issue of it been used as a rat run for traffic.  Improvements in Newcastle village . More attention to Kiladreenan , who believe they are forgotten about.

Cllr Fortune also talked about the function of the district and the powers it requires that should be allocated from WCC. He believes the district chairs should be members of the corporate policy group , that this would make the districts stronger and be better for local democracy. He is a big supporter of the climate change initiative and seconded Cllr Mathews proposal to put in place a climate change SPC, this was approved by all the members of WCC. Cllr Fortune says the initiative from the students in our secondary schools was a big driver in making this happen.

Housing is a key priority, and that there is a big demand for affordable housing. He is calling for a change in Government policy to allow young couples who are paying very high rents of 1600— 1800 euro per month and who have a good payment record to qualify for mortgage approval without the need to provide a deposit , this would help the housing crisis in a big way. The growing threat of homelessness is very concerning and Cllr  Fortune believes requires an emergency group to come together immediately to agree a solution, it is not good enough or acceptable to allow a family become homeless.

Others challenges where he wants to see change  and solutions agreed to resolve are , derelict sites, bus service, parking, toilet for the harbour area , support of tidy towns groups , protection of trees throughout the district.

Cllr Fortune says it is an honour and a privilege to be Cathaoirleach and is looking forward to working with his collogues to make a busy programme happen.

Cllr Tom Fortune

Cllr Tom Fortune is calling on the IDA to explain why Wicklow is not getting investment and why is it bottom of list of 26 counties.

We have good roads which are linked to road network which can easily take you to any part of Ireland and which are close to airport, shipping . We have good infrastructure and a good educated workforce, yet we get only the odd visit from the IDA  and nothing happens. We are practically in industrial/ job terms a suburb of Dublin. We are not treated in a similar way to KILDARE/ MEATH/ LOUTH which could also be classed suburbs of Dublin.

Cllr Fortune says he asked the IDA representatives when they were visiting WCC last year why is it nothing happens as a result of their visits and suggested to them that they were only going through the motions. Cllr Fortune believes that Wicklow and what it has to offer is not been sold properly.

Cll Fortune says this requires urgent attention and is calling for the senior people in the IDA to sort out. To this end he is calling on the CEO of WCC to immediately invite the IDA to Wicklow to meet the members and executive of WCC.

Cllr Fortune concludes by saying a good example of the lack of action by the IDA in Wicklow is the IDA site in greystones in Greystones which has been waiting for over 30 years for development.

Cllr Tom Fortune


SCHOOL PLACE CRISIS Independent Cllr Tom Fortune launched his local election campaign this week. Speaking at the launch Cllr Fortune talked about issues and achievements overthe past five years. Over the past five years so much has been achieved, he talked about new community centre, new playgrounds. New footpaths across Greystones/ Kilcoole and Newcastle. Delgany and Killincarrig village improvement plans. School development in Kilcoole/ Greystones and Charlesland. There was a lot of tree maintenance across the district. Improvement to local bus and train services. He thanked the local district engineer for all his co-operation in order for a very busy schedule of work to be completed.

He also talked of issues that require urgent attention, some at local level and some at national level. He is calling for clarification on proposed new 2nd level school planned for Charlesland and promised for 2021. This is coming up on the door steps, there is pressure on up to 400 places for 2021 according to concerned parents. Parents need to know what is happening. The proposed housing development in Kilcoole is an issue because of the way it is planned. The application seeks to exit on to the main street, which is the heart of the village and a busy regional road. This is crazy and not what was planned in the original plan. This will destroy Kilcoole if allowed proceed as planned. He said he cannot accept that a proper traffic survey was done, certainly not at the right time of the day. Bord Pleanala is not even listening to Wicklow county council, so what is going on.

Cllr Fortune talked about the housing crisis and the serious issue of homelessness. This is a scandal and is wrecking people’s lives. He says government policy is totally at fault here. The absolute debacle of the data centre project in Kilpedder poses a lot of questions. Why is it not getting the support that should be given to it. He also spoke of his annoyance at the way the ‘ROCK’S in Priestnewtown is allowed to be destroyed. It is a protected site in our county development plan. Also the flooding issues in Hollywell Kilcoole.

Cllr Fortuned also talked about better local government and the importance of independent councillors on local councils. There is urgent need to take the control the major parties have on local councils. Cllr Fortune praised the tidy towns groups in Kilcoole, Greystones, Newcastle and Delgany for the great work that they do, encouraged all candidates to do what tidy towns groups have asked and not put up posters in town and villages as per the schedule agreed at district meeting. Cllr Fortune also spoke with a large gathering about his role as a councillor and how he likes to help people and challenge unfairness. He thanked everyone for coming and for their ongoing support.

The launch concluded with a cup of tea and some biscuits provided by Tom’s wife Ann.

Thanks Independent Cllr Tom Fortune


Important for the future of Wicklow to get involved in this petition to show case the beautiful Wicklow countryside. Greenways across Ireland have proven a great success for local tourism.


If you can take a minute and click the link below to sign the petition


East Coast Greenway Petition


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