The Great and Little Sugar Loaf Mountains Special Amenity Area Order


On a visit to Wicklow, Mr John Gormley, TD, Minister for the Environment, Heritage & Local Government confirmed that it is his intention to write to Wicklow County Council directing them to make an order declaring the Great and Little Sugar Loaf Mountains as areas of special amenity due to their outstanding natural beauty.

The power for the Minister to make this direction to Wicklow County Council - and the steps to be followed by the planning authority - are set out in sections 202 and 203 of the Planning and Development Act 2000. The Planning Acts provide that notification of the special amenity area order must be made in one or more local newspapers. The planning authority must then submit the order - together with any objections - to An Bord Pleanála for confirmation.

Where any objections to the order are not withdrawn, An Bord Pleanála is required to hold an oral hearing and to consider the objections. Following this, An Bord Pleanála may then confirm the order - with or without modifications - or refuse to confirm it.

Commenting, the Minister said - "my direction to make this order for the Great and Little Sugar Loaf Mountains follows on from the designation by Wicklow County Council of Bray Head as a special amenity area and the confirmation of this by An Bord Pleanála. These designations ensure that our scenic landscapes are protected and make good sense from a tourism point of view."