Ireland’s Eye - a round of top Irish news stories
A sampling of news from around Ireland
Describing the dramatic fall in housing prices Roy Little, auctioneer at BRG Gibson, said typically housing was available at half-price compared to four or five years ago.
“These properties are typically at prices 50 percent what they would've been a few years back," he said. "They really are quite cheap, particularly the Edenmore Court property which could be purchased for £125,000.
“That property was only built in 2005 or 2006, and it would've been on the market for about £250,000 in 2007."
The monthly property auctions in Belfast are an increasingly popular route into the housing market, said Little, because "it often takes 14-28 days for completion, rather than the two to three months it might take going through an agent.”
Other properties available for the more than 400 eager buyers who crammed into the auction room last week included a 21 bedroom Armagh mansion, Castle Dillon, which had a guide price of just £210,000 despite being worth up to £2 million at the height of the housing boom. The highest bid it received at the auction was just £100,000.
A terraced house in Ballymena valued at £75,000 five years ago was sold to a happy buyer for just £19,000.
Savage cuts to rural communities across Galway will result in massive migration over the next two decades, leaving country areas with just a skeleton population.
It will result in massive pub closures while half of the current number of hurling and football clubs across Galway will cease to exist.
The grim prediction has been made by a former government minister who says that the closures of rural banks and post offices, the closure of rural Garda (police) stations and the withdrawal of grants for rural schemes will have a devastating effect over the coming years.
These added to the forced amalgamations of rural schools, cuts to rural transport and huge reductions in community health services will conspire to drive people out of country areas into larger centers of population – or else emigrate altogether.
It paints a picture of thousands of dwellings and business premises across rural Galway being abandoned by their owners in the wake of ongoing cuts in services.
According to Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív, he believes that there was a concerted campaign to downgrade country areas and says that in 20 years time the face of rural Galway would be irreparably changed.
“In 20 years time we will have half the number of GAA clubs in Galway because the people simply won’t be there to fill teams. Even the rural pub will become a thing of the past,” he predicted.
Suing the State
A man has sued the state, alleging that when he was a nine-year-old orphan, he was "boarded out" to work as a farm boy in "quasi-servitude.”
The now 50-year-old man is also suing a religious order that ran the orphanage where he had lived from when he was a baby until he was boarded out.
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