Sad deterioration of the golden mile
I feel I must write this as every time I go over our once golden mile I feel sad at the way it has been allowed to deteriorate under the stewardship of the present Comhairle Comhlacht Droichead Átha.
At the time of the so-called pedestrianisation which was then changed to half pedestrianisation, which incidentally didn't give a job to one local man or woman, and took nearly two years to complete, we were asked to give it a chance. The local people said all along that this was going to be a disaster, but the Council carried on regardless, at a time when money was no object, our money. They forgot that we had voted for them and that the town belongs to the people not to them. The Council then seized the advantage of using it as a loading bay and a car park to rake in more money.
They have also driven businesses out of the town with high rates etc. Years ago we had families living in the main streets, people living over shops etc. but now with high rates etc. it is too expensive. This is how we create no go areas at night, where the thugs take over and it is unsafe to walk around your own town. If people lived in the centre of the town, it would be alive, not dead after six o' clock in the evening. We have given this very expensive project. every chance and it is not getting any better and has spelled the death knell for our main street. We need, as people of Drogheda to reclaim our main street again.
If you start at narrow West Street it is like something from a war zone, with one or two shops left struggling to stay open and the rest derelict. The Old Abbey, a historical monument left to decay, and overgrown with weeds which is clearly visible from the Bridge of Peace. You would be ashamed to bring visitors to see it. West Street has become a honky tonk street. On Thursdays and Fridays when the market stalls are there, it is busy and that is the only time it has any semblance of the once beautiful street it was.
Drogheda people love their West Street, it is still where most people will meet up and have a chat, drop into Mass, go for a cup of tea etc. Every person I speak to about has the same story, they are sad at it's demise.
It's about time the council widened the street once more, and did away with the ugly parking, which is taking away from the street.
Local people as well as the council need to redevelop pride in their own town, and older people need to stop using the steps of St. Peter's Church as a bus stop, and put a stop to their young kids using the steps as a skate board park. What must tourists think of us?
The local elections are coming up shortly and the people of Drogheda need to tackle their local representatives about this issue. They cant bury their heads in the sand forever, and pretend that West Street doesn't matter.