Water shortages in Ferrybank and other villages around South Kilkenny will be greatly reduced when the first phase of the new Mooncoin Regional Water Supply Scheme is completed, a meeting of the Piltown Electoral Area Committee of Kilkenny County Council was told.

The Council has gone to tender on the project and a price is expected to be agreed in early July with construction work starting in September. Work is expected to take between eight and twelve month and the scheme will come into operation in September 2010.

Senior Executive Engineer Eimear Cody said drilling took place last year on three wells in Kilmacow. Work would start near O’Neill’s Shop in Kilmacow and the Council would try to minimise disruption but part of the road would have to be dug up.

The water main would go towards the Night Cap Bar and under Dunkitt Bridge and continue along the road before going through the fields. The Council was negotiating the purchase of land at Mullinabro for a water treatment plant. From Mullinabro the water would be pumped to a reservoir at Ballinvoher that would give the Council 24 hour storage.

Ms Cody said from the Mile Post at Slieverue, the supply would feed into the mains to provide domestic and industrial water. Other springs at Silversprings at Mooncoin and Waddingstown on the Kilmacow side of Mooncoin, will be brought into the scheme within two years. This would resolve or improve a lot of the water problems in Ferrybank, she said.