400 veteran and vintage tractors from across the North East are to spell out a ‘No Pylons’ warning to EirGrid in a 50 acre field in Kilmainhamwood in north county Meath. The letters will be at least 70 feet long and 40 feet wide.
The North East Pylon Pressure campaign (NEPP ) is organising the tractor rally on Bank Holiday Monday, 4th August, to underline rural opposition to EirGrid's proposal to build giant pylons and power lines across counties Monaghan, Cavan and Meath, and a substation in county Cavan.
Cavalcades of tractors will start at nine o’clock in the morning in the three counties, and led by veteran and vintage machines, they will converge on Dennis Farrelly's farm in Kilmainhamwood, County Meath, where they are due to arrive around one o’clock.
In addition to the veteran and vintage machines, the organisers confidently expect a further 500 to 600 tractors to take part. Spokesperson Aimée Treacy, of NEPP, said: ‘Not just farmers but everyone in rural villages and parishes are deeply concerned about EirGrid’s proposals. This is a chance for everyone to demonstrate their opposition’.
In county Meath, there will be three separate columns of tractors, starting at Summerhill, Batterstown and Bohermeen. Cavan tractors, starting from Mullagh, will join the Meath contingent at Moynalty, while tractors from the Muff area will join a Monaghan cavalcade at Kingscourt.
At the rally in Kilmainhamwood, there will be a forty long container truck adapted as a stage and there will be music, entertainment, bouncing castles and snacks to keep the crowds contented while the tractors are assembling. Two large fields have been earmarked as car parks and there will be plenty of stewards and Gardai directing traffic.
The Irish Farmers’ Association and the Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers’ Association both support the farmers’ opposition to pylons and overhead lines.
NEPP represents 45,000 people in the North East who favour undergrounding as the better way to construct ultra high power electricity lines.
At the announcement of a protest against the erection of ESB pylons by the North East Pylon Pressure campaign were, from left (on the vintage Nuffield tractor ) are Caoimhe Gibney (Carnaross, county Meath ) , Sinéad Farrelly (Kilmainhamwood, county Meath ) and Olivia Canavan (Muff, Kingscourt, county Cavan ) . Credit – Barry Cronin.