Six mark in­crease in Millstreet Tidy Towns re­port

The Corkman - - COMMUNITY NEWS -

THE en­thu­si­as­tic Millstreet Tidy Town As­so­ci­a­tion delved into an anal­y­sis of its 2017 sub­mis­sion that earned a six mark in­crease and a bronze medal in the na­tional com­pe­ti­tion.

Marks are hard earned and Millstreet jump­ing from 308 to 314 marks is en­hanced by the pos­i­tive re­ac­tion from the Tidy Towns ad­ju­di­ca­tor. And to­gether with a num­ber of ex­cit­ing de­vel­op­ments in the pipe­line it all au­gurs well for the fu­ture.

The out­come gives a ded­i­cated Millstreet Tidy Towns As­so­ci­a­tion the im­pe­tus to strive for futher suc­cess, ob­tain­ing a bronze medal and re­tain­ing its pre­mier cat­e­gory sta­tus in North Cork.

A synop­sis of the Ad­ju­di­ca­tors re­port reads:

Com­mu­nity In­volve­ment & Plan­ning:

Your long as­so­ci­a­tion with the com­pe­ti­tion is ac­knowl­edged and ev­i­dent in a com­pre­hen­sive and well put-to­gether ap­pli­ca­tion. It is easy to see that Tidy Towns is at the heart of the Millstreet com­mu­nity with an im­pres­sive list of sup­port­ing com­mu­nity groups, lo­cal busi­nesses and agencies.

With 18 ac­tive com­mit­tee mem­bers and 25 more vol­un­teers, the vol­un­teer spirit is clearly thriv­ing in Millstreet.

Also, the strong in­volve­ment of 20 helpers from the Dr­is­hane Com­mu­nity is very heart­en­ing to see – it is an ex­pres­sion of the very best of the Tidy Towns spirit fos­ter­ing a sense of well-be­ing and be­long­ing for those in our lo­cal com­mu­nity who can be ex­pe­ri­enc­ing lone­li­ness and iso­la­tion.

Built En­vi­ron­ment & Streetscape:

The streetscapes of Millstreet are very at­trac­tive, mak­ing the most of the beau­ti­ful back­drop of Claragh Moun­tain, theTown Square is a great suc­cess with its well or­gan­ised park­ing and the clever build-outs. Also, the Horn­beam trees give a lovely struc­ture as well as the re­lief of green fo­liage in the ur­ban land­scape.

A new pedes­trian crossing at St Pa­trick’s Church was work­ing well, the church is a beau­ti­ful build­ing and im­mac­u­late, its stained glass win­dows took our breath away and should be a must-see for any Millstreet vis­i­tor. Your planned his­tory pan­els for here will re­ally add to the vis­i­tor’s ex­pe­ri­ence.

The painted cot­tages on Church St looked well, Millstreet has some lovely de­tails in her Main Street build­ings and these too could fea­ture in Her­itage Trails of the town, we loved the sham­rock arches over the up­per win­dows of Tangney’s Shop.

Land­scap­ing & Open Spa­ces:

St Anna’s grave­yard is a won­der­ful oa­sis in the mid­dle of the town, the bright or­ange of the Marigolds grow­ing through the gravel and the red of the benches made beau­ti­ful con­trasts with the grey of the stonework. This area could be a great bio­di­ver­sity oa­sis too if the grass was man­aged as a wild­flower meadow.

The Town Park is a great amenity, we saw the three patches/is­lands of wild­flow­ers – these made such an im­pact that maybe you might con­sider ex­tend­ing them into wind­ing ‘rivers’ of wild­flow­ers around the Park edges.

Else­where. the tree-lined av­enue in the Dr­is­hane Es­tate is a beau­ti­ful fea­ture to the right as you drive in the Mal­low Road.

Wildlife, Habi­tats & Nat­u­ral Ameni­ties:

Work­ing to a three year Bio­di­ver­sity Ac­tion Plan. Millstreet clearly has a wealth of wildlife habi­tats and in­creased knowl­edge, the in­volve­ment of the lo­cal schools is great – en­sur­ing a good fu­ture for Millstreet’s bio­di­ver­sity.

In ad­di­tion to your BAP there’s ex­cel­lent guid­ance to be had in the All-Ireland Pol­li­na­tor Plan. The plans for a Pol­li­na­tor Park at the old petrol sta­tion on the Mal­low Road are a great idea.

Re­mem­ber to use lots of flow­er­ing peren­ni­als and small shrubs for a long-last­ing and more cost ef­fec­tive strat­egy. A wealth of wild­flow­ers was noted in the grave­yard be­side St. Pa­trick’s Church - a real pol­li­na­tor haven in the mid­dle of town.

The Wildlife Area on the Clara Road was vis­ited - bands of dead veg­e­ta­tion at lawn edges and around shrubs was dis­ap­point­ing in this area that’s meant to be wildlife-friendly!

Sus­tain­able Waste & Re­source Man­age­ment:

The Re­cy­cling Cen­tre is a great com­mu­nity re­source, Millstreet cer­tainly seems to be mak­ing the most of it. The three GIY projects are very pos­i­tive, the wa­ter butts and rain wa­ter har­vest­ing tanks is a great ini­tia­tive and it is good to avail of the guid­ance of­fered by lo­cal Com­mu­nity wa­ter Of­fi­cers

Tidi­ness & Lit­ter Con­trol:

Millstreet was beau­ti­fully tidy and lit­ter free through­out dur­ing our visit – all the hard ef­forts of the Millstreet TT vol­un­teers down through the years have re­sulted in a beau­ti­fully pre­sented town where pride in the lo­cal place is ob­vi­ous. The great com­mu­nity in­volve­ment by var­i­ous dif­fer­ent groups such as Tran­si­tion Year stu­dents and Dr­is­hane di­rect pro­vi­sion res­i­dents is clear to see through Millstreet’s clean and tidy en­vi­rons.

The Best Frontage Awards is a great scheme and is clearly hav­ing a good re­sponse. We were very taken with the newly re­fur­bished ‘Old Cream­ery’ build­ing on the Mal­low Road.

Both Bank build­ings have been sen­si­tively main­tained and the Credit Union looked very well with par­tic­u­larly nice win­dow boxes. The Dog­gie bins were noted at the three dif­fer­ent lo­ca­tions .

Res­i­den­tial Streets & Hous­ing Ar­eas:

The Steer­ing Com­mit­tee for the dif­fer­ent hous­ing es­tates is a good way to keep ev­ery­body on board and on track.

We drove into all the es­tates around the town and it is clear that all are well looked after, the res­i­den­tial streets around Millstreet fea­tured well-painted houses with lots of colour and plenty of planted bas­kets and pots, we loved the idea be­hind the Old Mill­race project. Un­for­tu­nately there’s only a few white stones left now to rep­re­sent the wa­ter – what about plant­ing the area with some­thing like Candytuft that has pure white flow­ers with a long flow­er­ing time.

Ap­proach Roads, Streets & Lanes:

The laneways of Millstreet are a great her­itage fea­ture of the town point­ing to­wards its long his­tory. Tom Cat and Jerry the Mouse were spot­ted in the win­dows of some well-painted empty houses!

The road­side pic­nic area on the Mal­low Road is beau­ti­fully main­tained and the use of dif­fer­ent colours to paint the street fur­ni­ture is very cheer­ing. The bed of roses at the Kil­lar­ney Road junc­tion was in full bloom for our visit mak­ing a lovely wel­come into that side of the town.

Some of the trees on the West End of Main Street are look­ing un­healthy and may need re­plac­ing.

Con­clud­ing Re­marks:

The beau­ti­ful pre­sen­ta­tion of Millstreet by the won­der­ful vol­un­tary ef­forts of her res­i­dents com­pli­ments the town’s beau­ti­fully pic­turesque sit­u­a­tion.

Keep up your great work.

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