Calls For Major Investment In Clare’s Deprived Areas

Photo (c) Visit Clare

Its claimed major urban and rural settlements in Clare have been set back by years of neglect and under investment.

It follows the publication of a new Pobal report which has found that over 1,000 people in this county are living in either a very or extremely disadvantaged area.

The area specified as Kilrush Urban which is home to a population of 306 residents was deemed the most deprived in the county and according to the latest data, the situation has deteriorated rapidly.


In 2016, the unemployment rate in the West Clare town was recorded at 19% , however this has now grown to 33%.

Furthermore the number of people now going on to third level education in the area is just 6%.

The report has brought legacy issues to the fore in the town, where Kilrush currently has a commercial vacancy rate of 26%.

Following the findings, a local community group is calling for an urgent and targeted investment in youth employment opportunities.

Earlier this year , the Shannon Estuary Economic Taskforce recommended the establishment of a maritime training centre of excellence in Kilrush by early 2025.

Mary O’Donoghue who is the Co-ordinator of the West Clare Family Resource Centre based in Kilrush says such a move would bring major benefits, but its vital the needs of those most affected by inequality are also taken on board.

The goal of Pobal is to lobby for funding on the European stage by identifying areas which are disadvantaged both economically and socially.

However the Cathaoirleach of the Shannon Municipal District believes many more metrics need to be taken into account when it comes to the struggles facing the county.

Currently 4,424 people in Clare are considered disabled to a great extent, something not documented by Pobal as of yet.

Sinn Féin Councillor , Donna McGettigan says while all deprivation must be tackled equally, the government must also take action in growing settlements, plagued by a lack of housing and unsuitable public transport.

You can listen to the full interview below.