CALLS to regenerate Railway Park in Dungannon created lively debate at the monthly council meeting, when Mayor Roger Burton said he would “vacate my seat” rather than agree to a proposal he was unsure about.
After numerous calls to clean up the area, Dungannon Council lodged an application for grant funding for the project and went as far as advertising a planning application relating to the 6 1/4 acre site, which lies between the Ballygawley Road and Lisnahull Road.
That funding request was recently turned down and, at the full council meeting, Independent councillor, Barry Monteith, asked that the council push ahead with their proposal to purchase the land and agree in principle to the application.
Cllr Monteith’s proposal was met with support from Sinn Fein Cllr Deirdre Varsani, who said the area in question was one where 500 new homes needed to be built, while her party colleague, Cllr Dominic Molloy said it had been long neglected and required lighting.
SDLP councillor, Anthony McGonnell, meanwhile, claimed there had been some “selective amnesia” by some on the issue and also supported Cllr Monteith’s call.
Councillors from the DUP and UUP urged caution and asked for the plan to be brought back to committee. Mayor Burton said he did not have enough information at hand, while Cllr Walter Cuddy suggested addressing the “issues of neglect”.