Fermoy Weir gained an unexpected advocate this week, with children’s entertainment legend and former RTÉ star Bosco urging Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe to fund a repair of the listed, protected structure.
Speaking exclusively to The Avondhu, Bosco revealed that the famous children’s character is a regular reader of The Avondhu, has stayed many times in Fermoy’s Grand Hotel, and has a great love of Fermoy’s Blackwater.
“Fermoy has one of the most beautiful rivers in all of Ireland. But the weir is a bit broken and I wish they would fix it before it all washes away. And the boys and girls in the Rowing Club won’t be able to row, and the swimmers won’t be able to swim and the fishers won’t be able to fish cos there won’t be any fish.
“We need to change things in our world big time but the things we can do now, we should do, like save the salmon and get them home to spawn. And fix the weir on the river Blackwater in Fermoy!”
Recounting a high-level meeting with Minister Paschal Donohoe in London in March of this year, Bosco called on ‘Mr Paschal’ to fund a full repair of Fermoy’s badly damaged 200-year-old weir.
“Please give the people in Fermoy the money to fix the weir,” Bosco appealed to Minister Donohoe. “It’s only a little bit of money out of your big bag of money and it could really help save Irish salmon and make lots and lots of people and salmon and dragonflies and ducks and swans and birds very happy!”
‘Bosco is spot on’
Paul Kavanagh of Save Fermoy Weir – Save Our Salmon welcomed Bosco’s intervention, saying it meant a lot to people who have been campaigning for over a decade to save Fermoy Weir.
“It says it all when we’re getting more leadership from a five-year-old who lives in a box than we are from some of our local politicians and officials. Bosco is spot-on. We can only hope Paschal Donohoe will listen.”
A spokesperson for the Minister of Public Expenditure and Reform told The Avondhu Minister Donohoe had received representations from his ministerial colleagues in respect of the funding of the repair of Fermoy Weir.
“When it comes to capital spending and the procurement of individual capital projects, this Department is responsible for setting the overall five-year multi-annual capital expenditure ceilings and for allocating these resources across different Departments. Decisions on how and where these allocations are then invested by individual departments are a matter in the first instance for the minister and then for the local authority.”
Read the full interview with Bosco in our new standalone Christmas edition ‘By the Fireside’ in the shops on Monday, December 9th.