The government’s plan for rural Ireland is flawed because it focuses entirely on towns and villages and ignores the townlands in the countryside outside them.
That’s according to Jim Connolly who founded the organisation Rural Resettlement Ireland 27 years ago and which is now facing closure because of a lack of government funding.
The organisation helped people resettle from places where there was a shortage of housing, such as Dublin, and relocate to rural areas where housing was available.
A number of families resettled in Leitrim and Sligo, in some cases resulting in new families that helped breath new life into communities.
But although the government has had much to say recently about its Ireland 2040 National Planning Framework plan, Mr Connolly says it’s ignoring a key area.
He’s warning the decline in rural Ireland is now reaching historic proportions: