independent

Sunday 21 September 2014

Dromiskin garden gets Presidential approval

Olivia Ryan

Published 18/09/2013 | 17:09

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THE inspiring dedication of the Dromiskin community in the 'Get Involved' campaign was recognised by President Michael D. Higgins at Aras an Uachtarian last week.

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THE inspiring dedication of the Dromiskin community in the 'Get Involved' campaign was recognised by President Michael D. Higgins at Aras an Uachtarian last week.

The project saw a site at the heart of the monastic village transformed as the facade of the Credit Union and its grounds were turned into a beautiful growth area for herbs and plants.

Supported by The Argus through the 'Get Involved' campaign, the initiative brought together young and old, family and friend, to develop an area that the entire community could truly be proud of.

In all, 22 local newspapers around the country supported local community groups in the campaign and all the groups and their editors were invited to attend a reception hosted by President Michael D. Higgins in Áras an Uactaráin last Thursday evening.

At the reception, TV presenter Duncan Stewart, who was chairman of the judging panel, praised all the volunteers who put their heart and soul into community projects across the country

Inspired by the need to regenerate the unused strip of land in Dromiskin village centre, the committee of volunteers have constructed an area that local people can be proud of.

Mary Murtagh from Dromiskin Tidy Towns said it was a 'very proud moment' for everyone in the village when their efforts were recognised by President Higgins.

'For all of us, it was a first visit to Aras an Uachtarain and it was a truly special occasion,' said Mary. 'What a lovely acknowledgement it was for the whole community in Dromiskin for the project to be honoured in this way.'

The presidential surroundings of the ceremony made the day an extra special event, she added.

'The entrance to the Aras is breathtaking, really incredible, and both the President and his wife were very warm and welcoming, and very interested in all of the projects.'

The Dromiskin project took shape over four different phases and was led by gardening expert Benedicta McArdle, master craftsman Seamus McArdle, along with hundreds of volunteer hours spent transforming the area into a beautiful cottage and Medicinal Garden.

At the heart of the new look landscape is a contemporary sculpture of the Credit Union logo. The building was also repainted and the car park was relined.

The new garden will act as a sanctuary for medicinal herbs that would have grown in and around the local area in Monastic times to treat illness.

Although the project was already planned by the Tidy Towns group in Dromiskin, Mary added that taking part in the 'Get Involved' campaign provided a much needed incentive.

'Joining the campaign really focused our minds and provided a timeframe for us to complete each phase of the project. It also engendered a real sense of team work, getting the whole community involved,' said Mary. 'We hope that our achievement will inspire other communities around Louth to get together and improve their towns, village, street or estate.'

The Argus

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