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LIMERICK NAVIGATION: A Tale of Cattle Woes |


In a recent session of the Limerick Harbour Board, concerns were raised regarding the continued closure of Limerick port for the export of cattle. The Clyde Shipping Company expressed their dissatisfaction, pointing out that while other ports such as Londonderry, Belfast, and Cork had been opened, Limerick remained restricted.

The issue was brought to the attention of the board by a letter from the Clyde Shipping Company. They highlighted the inconvenience caused by the ongoing closure of Limerick port for cattle exports and urged the authorities to take immediate steps to address the matter.

During the meeting, the Secretary of the board, Mr J. F. Power, informed the attendees that a question on this matter had been raised and had questioned the rationale behind keeping Limerick port closed while other Irish ports were operational. In response, Mr Power defended the decision, stating that it had not been conclusively proven that there was no disease in other parts of Ireland aside from Swords. Consequently, he argued, the restrictions could not be relaxed.

The County Limerick had received certification from Mr T. Ryan, V.S., acting on behalf of the Department of Agriculture, affirming its status as free from foot and mouth disease. Inspector Cannelton of the Department had also corroborated this certification. Despite this, Limerick port continued to face restrictions.

Interestingly, Limerick cattle were being transported to Cork for export to Great Britain, bypassing Limerick port altogether. This raised eyebrows and led to criticism of the perceived absurdity of the situation. Cattle from Limerick, certified as disease-free, were forced to take a detour through Cork, causing unnecessary logistical challenges.

In response to the growing discontent, a joint appeal was made to various political figures, including the Right Honourable Mr Bannerman, Mr T.W. Russell, Mr John Redmond, and Alderman Joyce. The appeal urged these influential figures to intervene and address the issue promptly.

The situation at Limerick port, with its ongoing restrictions despite certification of disease-free status, has sparked a debate on the rationale behind such decisions. The impact on local businesses and the inconvenience caused to the agricultural sector are clear concerns that demand attention. As the debate unfolds, stakeholders await a resolution that balances the need for disease control with the practical considerations of commerce and trade.

Freeman’s Journal – Tuesday 16 July 1912

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