Flood works at Lough Funshinagh in Co Roscommon have stalled due to a legal challenge from Friends of the Irish Environment (FOIE).

Roscommon County Council has said that FOIE asked the High Court to make an order continuing a prohibition on flood relief work at Lough Funshinagh, while awaiting the outcome of its pending legal challenge.

However, the argument did not reach a conclusion and the court was adjourned to 28 January.

The time is to allow lawyers representing Ireland and the Attorney General to make submissions and to allow the parties address the court on a relevant judgement that was delivered earlier on Friday, Roscommon County Council has said.


The court also prescribed a timetable for the legal challenge, which would see the main case ready for hearing in May 2022.

The interim stay on construction works remains in place until 28 January 2022.

Since May 2021, the council has been trying to install a 2.6km overflow pipe to alleviate flooded farmland and homes in the area of Rahara, Co Roscommon.

In August, the emergency flood works were stalled following a court order, which sought that a number of environmental studies be undertaken because Lough Funshinagh is a special area of conservation (SAC).

When works recommenced in October, it was a relief to many farmers near Lough Funshinagh.

Roscommon IFA chair Jim O'Connor said that there were 44 farmers with land adjacent to the lough, many of whom had their property threatened and farm payments cut due to rising water levels.

"These are the people whose homes and livelihoods are at risk without this work,” O’Connor said.

In November, FOIE had sought to bring the chief executive of Roscommon County Council before the High Court for the alleged breach of a High Court order.

Works have been halted twice since the beginning of the project in May 2021.