An illuminating debate about bridge over the Erne on N3 near Belturbet

Calls are being made to add lighting to “a very significant bridge” located on the N3 Belturbet bypass over the river Erne.

Fianna Fáil Councillor John Paul Feeley proposed the motion at the November meeting of the Cavan Belturbet Municipal District.

He said the bridge is one of just two cable-stayed bridges in the country and was the first of its kind installed in Ireland and the UK.

“It’s a pretty impressive bridge,” he says, stating such a bridge should be lit up to allow it to be seen in the dark.

The motion was also supported by Independent Councillor Brendan Fay who suggested naming the bridge.

He proposed a competition where people could write to the council with make suggestions.

Fianna Fáil Councillor Áine Smith supported the motion, stating it is an “absolutely stunning bridge”, and queried the possibility of naming the bridge “as Gaeilge”. She further suggested running the competition in the local school to get the younger generation involved in the process.

Senior Executive Engineer Paul Mulligan told the group the idea of illuminating the bridge was put to Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) previously, however there are not many examples around the country where bridges have been illuminated.

In response, Cllr Smith stated “in the city of Dublin” bridges are illuminated.

The group were told that lighting up a bridge in the countryside could have its own difficulties including the possibility of light pollution and the lack of an electricity source.

Mr Mulligan continued to say in order to “get the full effect” the bridge would have to be lit up from underneath, however flooding issues could make this a difficult task.