Town centre closed to traffic for ten days of Fleadh Cheoil
There won’t be any traffic queues in the centre of Mullingar during Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann 2022 – because there won’t be any traffic.
The council has confirmed details of road closures between 10am on Sunday July 31 and 4am on Tuesday August 9, for what will be the biggest event, possibly ever, in the town.
Most of the town centre will be blocked to vehicular traffic and parking will not be permitted.
Barriers will prevent vehicles from entering the closed streets, though servicing of premises will be allowed between 4am and 10am each day.
The council has stated that vehicular access to the pedestrianised areas (streets listed below) will be fully restricted and enforced.
The public have an opportunity to have their say, and object, to the proposed road closures until Wednesday June 29.
Streets to be closed:
• Dominick Street
• Mount Street
• Oliver Plunkett Street
• Pearse Street
• Austin Friars Street Lower
• Spout Well Lane
• Castle Street
• Southern end of Harbour Street
• Church Avenue
• Church Lane
• Blackhall Street
• Blackhall Place to Town Band Hall
• Mount Street Gardens
• Jail Hill
• Auburn Road
• Sunday’s Well Road
• Mary Street
• The Green Bridge to Railway Station
• The Green Bridge
• Railway Row
• Grove Street
• Dominick Place
• Martin’s Lane
• Bishopsgate Street
• College Street
• Eastern end of Patrick Street
• Southern end of Green Road
• Western end of Friars Mill Road
Alternative routes during the fleadh will be via the N52 bypass, the Joe Dolan Bridge, the western bypass and the N4; or via the Robinstown Link Road.
Signs will be placed at the major junctions around the town informing motorists of the closures.
Objections to the proposed temporary road closure should be made in writing to: Municipal District of Mullingar Kinnegad, Westmeath County Council, Áras and Chontae, Mount Street, Mullingar, or email email@example.com on or before 4pm on Wednesday June 29.
The president of Mullingar Chamber of Commerce John Geoghegan believes that the council’s traffic plan for the fleadh “covers a lot of the bases”.
“I understand that a lot of work has been done and that they have consulted a lot of stakeholders such as the hospital, taxi drivers and other groups. I think they have come up with a fairly logical approach.
“I think in general the plan is good. There will be half a million people in Mullingar over the eight days.
“The fewer cars in the town centre, the better for all of us. All we need is the weather,” he said.
Mr Geoghegan revealed that he had been contacted by a number of retailers who felt that the pedestrian zone in the centre of town could have been extended a bit further to increase footfall.
If people have concerns, they should make a submission to the council before June 29, he says.
“People need to get involved if they have concerns. The fleadh is so important to the town. We are all going to take a little bit of pain, but the overall gain is going to be brilliant for the town.
“The committee are doing great work. They are a voluntary group and have put in thousands of hours. I don’t think there is any other country in the world where you would see an annual event on this scale put on by voluntary groups.”
Westmeath county councillors received a report on the logistics of running the fleadh at their May monthly meeting.