Progress made in Shannonside turf cutting negotiations

Negotiations between turf cutters and the National Parks and Wildlife services are continuing to arrive at solutions in respect of up to 15 bogs complexes.

A judge directed that four men from South Galway be found not guilty yesterday on varying charges over incidents of alleged illegal turf cutting on a protected EU site in Portumna in May 2012 and Woodford in August 2012.

The court heard the prosecution could not offer the required evidence due to the unavailability of a key witness.

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Chairperson of the Turf Cutters and Contractors Association, Michael Fitzmaurice says since the flash points in 2012, there’s been substantial progress with RPS consultants on arriving at mutually satisfying solutions on 12 complex cases, including in the last two weeks in Kilkerrin in Galway.

Deputy Fitzmaurice says it’s a slow process: