Friday 20 April 2018

Wee County looks good

Tidy Towns adjudicators went to every corner of Louth to assess the work of volunteers. These are snapshots of their high praise for the county

Tallanstown was best in Louth yet again
Tallanstown was best in Louth yet again
Blackrock retained their Gold Medal status

Annagassan: Visitors arriving into Annagassan are left in no doubt that they've arrived somewhere special. Not just by the dramatic views but by the lovely touches in the viewing point as you arrive from Castlebellingham.

The lovely painted stones with lighthouses, farm gates on some boats looked lovely as did the displays adorned with lifebuoy's and birds.'


Your involvement with this national competition over the last 40 years has led to a community that is united in its commitment to ensure that Carlingford is a thriving town. On adjudication day it certainly was thriving and it looked great. Your commitment to sustainability and the long term future of your community is to be applauded.

Castlebellingham - Kilsaran

Whilst much has changed in recent decades in your village, you have adapted and incorporated good quality new builds into your community. It was great to see new businesses thriving including the Castle itself, and the Foleys Tearooms both of which would encourage any passer-by to stop and explore the village.


The judges said they were delighted to have visited after a floral event in the town, which saw so many properties adorned with flowers and hanging baskets. 'It was obvious that you all work together for a greater aim - the maintain and build a vibrant town of which you can be proud. Well done on the endeavours this year and every year for the past 43 years.'


The village was praised for its 'Fishing for Litter' project supported by Bord Iascaigh Mhara which encourages trawlers to land any litter encountered at sea. 'It was great to see at the beach not only litter bins provided, but recycling bins, and sandwich boards with litter pickers and bags to encourage visitors to take part in a two minute beach clean-up before they leave. '


Dromiskin improved its scoring by ten points over the last year to 300, with the adjudicator saying: 'Every corner in Dromiskin had something to offer or attract. The school and church were of a very high standard. In particular categories such as landscaping and wildlife and natural amenities you have excelled yourself.'


Adjudicators praised the coastal village volunteers for making the most of the stunningly attractive setting for both the community and visitors to enjoy. There is a strong sense that the Blackrock residents are extremely proud of their location. A clean and tidy environment was evident throughout. For a village of your size you have a large number of housing estates and you are to be congratulated on the excellent presentations at various locations. An appealing feature was the high standard of planting and mature landscaping. The Blackrock Park is very well integrated into the residential areas and the location of this multi-faceted park is nicely overlooked by surrounding housing, providing a safe environment for children and younger users of the facilities.


Well done on engaging and involving the younger members onto the committee of Grange TidyTowns. The Citizenship Morning delivered in Bush Post Primary brought home important messages of how 120 first years can make an active difference to their community by helping local groups including soup kitchens, Green Schools and TidyTowns. You have a great number of volunteers (40+) for a relatively small community. 'Well done on commissioning an ecological study of the wildlife and habitats of Grange. From this you have identified some key actions to raise awareness and enhance the local fauna and flora.'


The standard of built heritage was excellent in Greenore. Victorian street lights, wrought iron railings and even matching hanging baskets all looked very well. The seafront was highlighted as 'one of the most special wildlife areas in Europe and is designated as both a Special Protection Area for birds and a Special Area of Conservation.' The impressed adjudicator said: 'Driving onto Euston Street was like arriving on a film set! For 22 years you have entered the national competition and you have done extremely well. You now face new opportunities, with the newly opened ferry. It is hoped that the new influx of visitors into, and passing through, Greenore will enjoy a visit to the local railway museum and tea rooms.


Kilcurry was described as a 'small but surprising active community', full of projects and examples of good work that help to advance in the Tidy Towns competition and contribute to the pride and the formation of a cohesive community. 'The church in Kilcurry enjoys a very prominent position and is surrounded by beautiful landscaping.' The choice of bee-friendly shrubs and flowers was great to see and Kilcurry presented very well for its 2017 adjudication.'


The Community Centre is an impressive building demonstrating that possibly you serve a wider community than the core of Kilkerley. The Church and school were very well presented and it was lovely to see the four green flags flying proudly here. The crowning glory of Kilkerley was the magnificent copper beech tree that must be a couple of centuries old possibly. Your village is gorgeous!


The buildings in the centre of the village look very well. There are a number of lovely sculptures in the village including the Blacksmith Sculpture at the Forge, and the flying birds directing towards the Ponds. The development of the fairyland by the crossroads was highlighted, including doors from 'Alice in Wonderland' featuring at Cloon Anna, and the lovely ring Fort in Lisheen Park. The bio-divesity plan at Stephenstown Pond was also praised. The wildflowers planted on the roads into Knockbridge were gorgeous. Indeed these were some of the nicest approach roads your adjudicator has seen in this competition this year!

Louth village

Louth looks like a lovely attractive village in which to live. The new playground and refurbished church are just some of the great amenities that Louth has to offer. Adjudicators praised the strong recycling ethos in the village, with over 60 tonnes of glass recycled from the bottle banks. Homes and residents throughout the village of Louth appeared of a high standard. The tree-lined avenue up to Knockfergus housing estate was admired. Feran drive looked really well as did the terraced homes on Church Grove. Roses looked wonderful at the entrance to Abbey Court.


The main crossroads in Omeath provides the focal point in the village. Hanging baskets and lovely planters and the fresh paint of Howes Bar help make a real impact at this junction. The estuary is designated as one of the most special places for wildlife in Europe and it would be good to raise awareness of this where possible through walks, trails, mobile app trails or information boards. Your community has the benefit of a spectacular setting and beautiful scenery. Your endeavours are working to improve and enhance the area for the benefits of locals and visitors alike. From cake sales, table quizzes and bucket collections you do lots of different work for Omeath TidyTowns.


Former national winner Tallanstown once again came in for high praise from Tidy Towns. 'Wherever you look in Tallanstown there were lovely planted beds and shrubs and mature.'It was a delight to visit the infamous Tallanstown and we were not disappointed. Every corner is well looked after by the community, flowers are abundant, many of which are exactly what pollinators need, and the ecology trail was a delight to follow. The photographs supplied with your entry show a great community spirit. What your adjudicator didn't realise that Tallanstown was probably one of the first communities in the country to advance in the sustainable waste and resource management category as the church and school railings were reused when they were removed from Dundalk prison last century! Well done for all your hard work this year.

The Argus