2.8 Community Services and Facilities
As a small town, Gowran is an important service centre. This plan aims to ensure that Gowran’s service base expands in line with any development and that the town maintains its important role in the local rural area.
2.8.2 Garda Síochána
There is no resident Garda in Gowran. The Garda Station in Thomastown serves the Gowran area.
A Community Alert Group was founded in Gowran in 1993 and this is still operational. The Community Alert programme was established on a national level by Muintir Na Tíre in 1984 in partnership with An Garda Síochána. It evolved in response to a rise of crime in rural Ireland, particularly attacks on vulnerable people (including the elderly) living alone. It is a voluntary crime prevention programme for rural communities and it encourages the community to pro-actively participate with An Garda Síochána in improving the quality of life and safety of the community in general.
In addition to the wide range of sporting organisations which provide activities for youth, a Foróige group is active in the town. This provides non-sport activities for young people.
Policies (Chapter 4 of the County Development Plan 2008-2014 also applies):
Policy CS1 To work in partnership with youth service providers and the local community in the development of youth services.
The Dalton Day Care centre and ten terraced houses were constructed by the community in 1996 with the aid of Department of Environment funding. The Day Care centre provides a range of valuable services and facilities to the community.
Policy CS2 To facilitate and support the expansion of the range of facilities including accommodation, catering for the elderly population in conjunction with the community and the Health Service Executive.
Primary health services for the Gowran area are provided through the East Kilkenny/ South Carlow Primary Care Team, which serves a population of 7,746 (2006 census) across the Gowran, Graiguenamanagh and Borris geographic region. The Team is made up of 7 GPs, Practice Nurses, Public Health Nurses, Home Helps, Physiotherapy, and Occupational Therapy services along with other more specialised services such as Dietetics, Mental Health, Substance Misuse services, etc. being provided as part of a broader Primary and Social Care Network. The service is provided across five locations of which one of these is the Health and Medical Centre on Main Street in Gowran. Out of hours medical services are provided locally through the Care Doc service.
Gowran also has a pharmacist and a nursing home serving the needs of the local community.
Policy CS3 To co-operate with the Health Service Executive in the provision of health services for the town
According to the Guidelines for Planning Authorities on Childcare Facilities, “Government policy on childcare is to increase the number of childcare places and facilities available and to improve the quality of childcare services for the community”.
Section 4.5.1 of the County Development Plan (2008) sets out the policies of Kilkenny County Council in relation to childcare provision. Kilkenny County Childcare committee, which is a sub group of the Kilkenny County Development Board, have also published a County Childcare Strategy (2007-2010). This identified a gap in the Gowran area for a childcare facility.
Permission was granted under P.05/1279 for a crèche located in what is now the Ogenty housing estate. This has not been built to date and this permission expires in February 2011. The Council would welcome the provision of any childcare services in the town and the County Childcare Committee provide support in this regard.
Policy CS4 To facilitate and encourage the provision of an adequate range of quality childcare facilities in appropriate locations
The graveyard is located to the west of the village, adjacent to the Church. The site of the graveyard and the church grounds is approximately 1.3 hectares.
This graveyard contains graves dating back to the 1700’s. There is still ample capacity to cater for the next 15-20 years. The Parish also own a parcel of land (approximately 0.6 hectares) to the rear of the graveyard (located in Phase 2 Residential zone) which is held in reserve into the future.
 Department of the Environment and Local Government, 2001, p. 3 Childcare Facilities – Guidelines for Planning Authorities, Stationery Office
Please also indicate below whether you are making a comment or whether you are making a formal submission to the plan.