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There was a lot to talk about on Wednesday 4th May when Delvin Tidy Towns met to discuss the progress that has been made in preparing the village for this year’s national Tidy Towns competition.
Small things really do make a big difference and while Delvin may not necessarily win any prizes this year, the village certainly has many attractive features that a little care and attention will soon bring up to standard. With the work that has already been carried out and which is set to continue, ANYTHING will be possible in Delvin!
Members of the Community Employment Scheme have been busy painting poles along the main street and a horticulturist is preparing the 24 hanging baskets which will shortly be hung from them. The HSE has agreed to allow the CES to paint the perimeter wall around the Health Centre, and Delvin Youth Reach has been busy tidying up the flower beds in front of their premises in the Court Yard.
Delvin Scouts lead a very successful litter picking session on Good Friday and it was noted that the village has been kept tidier since this work was carried out – well done everyone! Further litter picks will be carried out during the summer and the Scouts will also start work on painting some of the derelict properties at the northern end of the main street when final permissions have been granted.
A special note of thanks was given to the takeaways on the Main Street who have all put in extra work to clear away any litter from outside their premises.
Unfortunately hands are tied with regard to the derelict sites that blight the village landscape and which will require third party assistance to sort. Like other villages across the land, Delvin bears scars from the aftermath of the Celtic Tiger years, with several buildings in key locations being left to rot.
Clearly interests have changed, but an appeal is being made to absent owners of the buildings pictured to clean them up or to make contact with the Tidy Towns Committee and discuss the options available.
Some of the buildings are in a dangerous as well as unsightly state and while planned redevelopments did not happen and money has undoubtedly been lost, local people should not have to watch them falling down or risk injury when passing them.
It is hoped that the owners will recognise this and will do anything they can to assist, even if their investments haven’t yielded any return.
So far, Delvin has missed out on works that were promised under the suspended Village Enhancement Scheme, including “undergrounding” of overhead cables, replacement of footpaths and improved parking. Pressure is being applied elsewhere to ensure that this work is carried out at the earliest opportunity, but in the interim period, assistance is being sought from Westmeath County Council to aid locals who are interested in doing what they can right now to improve the village.
A representative of the Tidy Towns group will meet with WCC shortly to see what can and cannot be done, and on the agenda of that meeting will also be St Mary’s Church – a prominent, council owned site that draws plenty of interest but which is in desperate need of a clean up.
The outcome of the council meeting will be shared at the next Tidy Towns gathering, and as the group is keen to maintain momentum, this has been scheduled for Wednesday 18th May. Please support.