A proposal for the conservation and regeneration of Kinsale by declaring it Ireland's first national heritage town.

Kinsale in County Cork faces similar problems to many Irish towns.

Its attractive narrow streets so beloved of the tourist hide decay and many derelict buildings and sites.

Local community groups and the Kinsale Urban Council commissioned a year long study carried out by the architectural students at University College Dublin (UCD). The report recommends that government money be made available to Kinsale for preservation and improvement.

Other towns with similar historical value could also hope for similar financial assistance. The report also includes recommendations on planning, traffic control, and pedestrianisation. The main recommendation of the report is the establishment of a preservation programme for existing sites and the construction of housing in the town centre.

Director of the study Philip Geoghegan points to the problem of continuous depopulation in Kinsale resulting in a lot of dereliction. He suggests that with a commitment from the local and county authorities there may be possibilities to bring back life into Kinsale.

We recognise that Kinsale has to develop if it is to survive at all.

Philip Geoghegan says that the point of the report is to identify what Kinsale is about, why it is unique and to suggest constructive ways to solve the problem of dereliction. As a small town, he says that funding for these developments would have to come from central government. He also appeals to the community to do what they can in the present circumstances.

We've promoted the idea of Kinsale as a national heritage town and a national responsibility.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 13 May 1977. The reporter is Tom MacSweeney.