Enhancement Awards acknowledge Roscrea's community spirit

Darren Keegan

Reporter:

Darren Keegan

Email:

darren.keegan@midlandtribune.ie

The presentation of the much anticipated 2018 Roscrea Enhancement Committee Awards took place shortly before Christmas. This year a number of additional awards were added to what has become a very significant initiative for the town.

Following the success of last year’s presentation format, this year, members of the Enhancement Committee traveled once again to each of the award recipients to present their individual awards in person, which was greatly appreciated by all involved.

Speaking this week, the Chairman of The Enhancement Committee, Brian King congratulated all the winners and in particular, he acknowledged the overall winner Ashbury who took the honours and the coveted cup sponsored by Roscrea Credit Union in recognition of their efforts. Brian said that he and those that accompanied him from the organising committee were delighted and very much appreciated the warm welcome they received from all the award winners.

Brian had a special mention for Sheehane and Assumption Park and said it was Sheehane’s second time to enter the competition and to finish second in 2017 and once again in 2018 was a remarkable achievement of which they should be very proud.

Assumption Park finished in 4th place in 2017 and improved on that position to finish 3rd in 2018 which was also a great achievement.

Brian said that the awards would not be possible without the support of local sponsors and in that regard, he was keen to thank his Roscrea Credit Union and its Chairman Sean Hogan, Super Valu Roscrea, Roscrea Chamber Of Commerce, Tesco Roscrea, Doherty Hardware, Milltown Garden Centre, Roscrea Tidy Towns, Roscrea Heritage Society and Tipperary County Council.

The overall winner of the 2018 Roscrea Enhancement Awards was Ashbury who deserve great credit and great praise for their endeavors.

Brian King said that the Ashbury Committee were great supporters of the Enhancement Awards and the Roscrea Enhancement Plan and work hard every year to ensure the Ashbury estate is presented so well. Brian said that the award of first place in the 2018 Enhancement Awards is a fitting tribute to all the extra work that was completed in the past twelve months and that the Ashbury residents will no doubt be very proud of their achievements.

Brian King said that not only did Ashbury win the best overall prize they also won the award for “Best Entrance To An Estate” which gives an indication of the level of work completed by the Ashbury Residents.

On behalf of Ashbury, Mary Dollard thanked the Enhancement Committee and the sponsor of the overall prize, Roscrea Credit Union, for their support. Mary said that the awards were a great initiative and that she was very grateful to the organising committee for coming to Ashbury to present the award. The Chairman of Roscrea Credit Union and also a member of the Enhancement Committee, Sean Hogan, spoke about the importance of the awards and said that the Credit Union was thrilled for Ashbury and all the award recipients.

This year the Enhancement Committee once again engaged a judge who is very much specialised in the whole area of enhancement and landscape design.

The judging took place in late summer and early autumn and those that entered were assessed under various criteria such as Litter Control, Biodiversity, Community and Youth Involvement, Tidiness/Cleanliness of the estate, Vibrancy, Innovation, Use of the Irish Language, Community voluntary efforts and initiative including fundraising and Sustainability and conservation of resources.

Brian King said that from reading the adjudicator’s reports the organising committee are of the conclusion that the judging was fair and balanced and focused on the positives while making plenty of recommendations for improvements.

Brian said in order to enrich the awards this year the organising committee once again looked for an adjudicators report for each entrant.

This strategy was introduced for the first time as part of the 2017 awards and the quality of the entries for the 2018 competition would suggest that the feedback given in the report helped greatly in terms of motivating entrants and focusing entrants on how to continuously improve and help with the overall enhancement efforts for our town.

Brian said that each entrant can use this report in the coming months to reflect on all the positives in their area while at the same time focus on where improvements can be made for 2019.

Brian explained that this approach is hugely significant for Roscrea Tidy Towns in that if each entrant to the Enhancement Awards continues to improve and develop, we can expect that this success will then feed into the Tidy Towns results.

Brian called on even more local resident committees and local businesses to get behind the Tidy Towns effort and as always, he asked people to reflect on what our town would look like it we were not lucky enough to have such an active tidy towns committee.

Brian King was anxious to thank the organising committee which once again this year included himself, Pamela Aitken, Eileen Doherty, Marion Carey, and Cllr Michael Smith. Brian said that Pamela in particular put in a lot of effort to the awards and the committee are very grateful for her endeavors.

Brian also thanked those involved in the judging and administration of the awards and he thanked local photographer PJ Wright who was on hand to capture all the award presentations.

Finally, Brian thanked all those that entered the 2018 awards and he congratulated all the recipients especially those receiving an award for the first time which included, John McQuaid, Deirdre Ryan, Rosemary Street, and Age-Friendly Roscrea.

Brian said it is also worth noting that multiple overall winner Ard Ross were in the reckoning once again this year and received a “Special Recognition Award”. Spokesperson Caroline Wynne said that while disappointed not to win the overall best prize once again this year, Ard Ross would work hard to win back the cup in 2019.

Kennedy Park also featured amongst the award recipients once again this year and they were delighted to receive a joint first position in the “Heritage Award” category.

In conclusion Brian said it is worth noting the comments that arose during the judging which concluded that all those that entered the 2018 Enhancement Awards represented a very active and vibrant community and contribute greatly to the overall enhancement of Roscrea.

The town has a lot to look forward too as projects that form part of the Enhancement Plan such as the implementation of the new signage strategy and the enhancement of the market square area of the town start to come to fruition.

To all the entrants and recipients of the 2018 Roscrea Enhancement Committee awards the Enhancement Plan and Awards Organising Committees would like to say we say well done to each and all, thanks for entering and keep up the good work.

The full results for this year’s competition are as follows:

Best Estate Overall: Ashbury

Best Estate (2nd prize): Sheehane

Best Estate (3rd Place): Assumption Park

Best New Entry: Age-Friendly Roscrea

Best Presented Street: Rosemary Street

Special Recognition Award: Ard Ross

Joint Heritage Award: Kennedy Park

Joint Heritage Award: Deirdre Ryan Solicitor

Best Presented Business: McQuaid Barbers

Best Entrance To An Estate: Ashbury

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