Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Reprieve for Valentia & Malin ?

Good news this morning as the government has announced that the existing coastguard radio stations at Valentia Island in Co. Kerry and Malin Head, Co. Donegal are to be retained while a new centre is being built in Dublin.

The government announced last year that Valentia and Malin were to close down after more than a century of operation and be replaced with a new station in Galway. The response from the coastal and marine community was one of shock and a campaign was quickly put together to save the two stations which have over the years helped many thousands of mariners in trouble and played a role in saving many lives.

Let us hope that this is a full reprieve for Valentia and Malin and that they will continue to be the eyes and ears of mariners for generations to come and that this isn't simply a face-saving exercise until after the next local elections from a government in retreat from hugely controversial budget measures and growing unpopularity.