Our beauty spots are becoming building sites – Ireland

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A town is a living thing, so naturally this one has changed since I moved here a decade ago, shutters coming down on shops and bank branches, and the post office pushed to its perimeters. Thankfully, there are bright new lights along with die-hards that hang in despite everything.

But what is not so great is this town stretching its tentacles beyond traditional borders to build an oversized suburbia. As a woman, who was away working in Australia discovered, when a neighbour phoned. “You know those wildflower fields behind your cottage?” she said. “Well, they’re gone.” Replaced by one of several housing estates tacked on over the last couple of decades.

Our British buddies across the water have a massive population compared to us, yet they still protect and preserve their countryside and towns. Whereas anyone who owns land here seems more or less free to sell it off for a pretty penny. Even though the entire town pays the price for their personal profit, not to mention the considerable ecological consequences.

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