Tuesday, 12 December 2017
Department of Defence
Defence Forces Properties
580. To ask the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the use of the various military installations decommissioned over the past 25 years; the number that have been disposed of; the current use of each; the number still in the ownership of the Defence Forces; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53192/17]
Over the past 25 years my Department has disposed of a range of properties that were deemed surplus to military requirements.
Between 1992 and 1997, the old military barracks at Cavan was sold to Cavan County Council and six former Reserve Defence Force (RDF) premises were sold to private individuals. During this same period, some lands at various locations were disposed of, including part of a rifle range to Galway Corporation and lands to Kildare County Council, Westmeath County Council, Cork County Council, Commissioner of Irish Lights and New Ross UDC.
Since 1998, under the barracks consolidation programme, the sale has been completed on twelve of the fourteen barracks that were closed under this programme. These are Fermoy, Castleblaney, Naas, Ballincollig, Dublin (Clancy Barracks), Monaghan, Longford, Cavan (new barracks), Letterkenny, Kildare, Clonmel and Lifford. The sale of Castlebar Barracks to Mayo County Council will be completed in the near future.
Columb Barracks in Mullingar remains under the ownership of the Minister for Defence and is currently being used by An Garda Síochána, the Customs Service, the Westmeath GAA Board and various other community groups. It is intended to dispose of the barracks by public auction in 2018.
A number of other properties have also been disposed of since 1998 including 28 Reserve Defence Force premises. These include sales to Southern Health Board, Cavan County Council, Cork VEC, Mayo County Council, Wicklow County Council, Inland Fisheries Ireland and Fingal County Council. One was also sold to Special Olympics Ireland and the remainder were sold privately.
Parts of the former training camp at Knockalisheen Camp, Co Clare were disposed of – one part to a private individual and two to sporting clubs whilst the former training camp at Lahinch Co Clare was also sold to a sporting organisation.
Lands at two military forts have been sold to Cork County Council and the Department of Justice.
Lands at two former rifle ranges were disposed to private individuals and two border posts were also sold to private individuals.
In addition, lands have been sold at various locations including lands to Galway City Council, Cork Corporation, Limerick City Council, Waterford City Council, Dublin City Council and Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform. Lands at Ringaskiddy, Co. Cork were also transferred to the Department of Education and Science as a contribution for the National Maritime College.
A small number of properties are being used under licence by various organisations including the use of lands at Birr, Co. Offaly by a sporting organisation. Some remaining land at the former training camp at Knockalisheen, Co. Clare is currently used by a private individual for grazing purposes until arrangements are finalised for disposal.