Holy Water on Tap Earns Tidy Point for Currow

See how Currow scored in this year's Tidy Towns report. Click on the chart to enlarge.
See how Currow scored in this year’s Tidy Towns report. Click on the chart to enlarge.

As you would imagine, our lovely, neighbouring village of Currow came very well out of the June 24th visit from the Tidy Towns adjudicator.

All involved with Scoil Mhuire and Naomh Treasa there will be delighted as pupils and teachers came up trumps in several aspect of the report. So did the Church of the Immaculate Conception and its holy water dispensing methods. That, in itself gained a point for the village. Seen the report in full here:

Community Involvement & Planning / Rannpháirtíocht an Phobail & Pleanáil:

Currow Rural Development Association members from left: brothers, Dermot and Seán O'Leary, Paul O'Connor and his dad, Peter pictured at their just restored Lime Kiln in the townland of Droumore in 2010. ©Photograph:  John Reidy
Currow Rural Development Association members from left: brothers, Dermot and Seán O’Leary, Paul O’Connor and his dad, Peter pictured at their just restored Lime Kiln in the townland of Droumore in 2010. ©Photograph: John Reidy

Thank you for your application and the detailed information on your projects throughout the year. Thank you for
heeding the advice of last year’s adjudicator and reducing the amount of supplementary information provided. The
provision of too much information can result in the key project work being overlooked.
It was good to see your long-term plan that included a number of achievable actions to aim to complete over the
next three years. How did you draft this plan? Did the community input into this? Did the schoolchildren have any
ideas or wishes that were incorporated into this? You have a lot of helpers who work hard throughout the year and
it was good to see them being thanked publically. Goodness the pupils of Scoil Mhuire do a lot of projects and
activities with the TidyTowns committee and it was great to see this in the photographs provided. Thanks to the
school also for their supplementary submission with your entry form.
Built Environment and Streetscape / An Timpeallacht Thógtha agus Sráid-dreacha:
Arriving into the centre of Currow it was good in the centre of Currow to see a number of open and busy commercial
premises. They were freshly painted and looked well and it was great to see them supported by the local
community. The central square of Currow and the mature trees and nice buildings off it are a lovely focal point to
your village. The majestic, copper beech is decades-old. McCarthy food market was freshly painted, as were the
boundary walls of the church. The barge boards along the roofline of the school needed some attention. You
should encourage everybody to visit your church and to appreciate the vibrant stain glass window at the choir
platform. The community centre looked very well and had a lovely appealing mix of plants in the planters at the
front door.
Landscaping and Open Spaces / Tírdhreachú agus Spásanna Oscailte:
100 trees for 100 years! This was a great project for 2016. Are local families helping to keep a watchful eye as
newly planted trees need a lot of attention in their first few years. The landscaped beds and planters throughout
Currow were of a very high standard. The hanging baskets on the bridge looked very well in particular. The
proclamation displayed and the planting of seven birch in ‘The Meadow’ was very nice indeed. Of particular note
were the many native plants and shrubs included here. Many these would benefit our bees which are struggling.
Details of plants that are good for bees are detailed under the ‘National Pollination Plan’. Your long-term plan
shows you are introducing a water feature here. This area works well as it is so natural so don’t’ try and manicure it
The landscaped bed just inside the church grounds was particularly noticeable and really nice. The raised stone bed
in the middle of the main square area was nicely built and made a nice feature in this large area. There was a lot of
tarmac in this central area. It is suggested that you could easily add some features here without losing car parking
spaces. A number of raised beds could help define the difference between the car park and the road. Or the
addition of some mature trees could also have the same effect.
Well done to the committee and the 6th Class students in the school for getting involved with Earth Week and
planting seeds.
The lime kiln had good information displayed on the local heritage and the important role it featured in the area’s
What is also lovely about Currow is that many of the public buildings have maintained or planted trees in their open
spaces. The collection of farmyard implements at the entrance to the school brought a smile to your adjudicator
face, as did the innovative planter positioned by Currow cycling club up near the grotto. The chickens at the school
were not found but the garden growing at the back of the school with its red currants, blackcurrants and ox eye
daisies was admired. Again well done to the pupils of Scoil Mhuire in their efforts.
Finally well done on your long-term efforts to kill the invasive plant Japanese knotweed. This will take a number of
years of no cutting, disturbance and is one of the few times you will hear an ecologist recommend the application of
weedkiller to eradicate this plant.
Wildlife, Habitats and Natural Amenities / Fiadhúlra, Gnáthóga agus Taitneamhachtaí Nádúrtha:
As mentioned above the Park Meadow Area was admired and the planting here is all very natural and you have put
a lot of effort into this.
Unfortunately on adjudication day a tractor driver was cutting all the hedges on all the approach roads and in the
village itself. There was not a ‘sight-line’ issue, nor was this a health and safety matter along such straight roads. It
was a blatant disregard of the wildlife legislation that states clearly hedge cutting should not be carried out during
the bird breeding season. Unfortunately you have lost a mark in this category of the competition because of these
The Lake Area/ Wildlife Sanctuary was visited. This would be a lovely area for wildlife to naturally colonise. What
native wildlife uses this area? Unfortunately, the feeding of your collection of wildfowl is adding a lot of nutrients to
the water and on adjudication day there was an algae bloom here. Perhaps you should adopt a policy to enhance
the local habitat so it’s suitable for all wild ducks such as moorhens, coots and mallards to enjoy?
It was also sad to see here how much weedkiller had been applied under the trees in this ‘wildlife area’. Mulching
would be much better solution that would benefit the local environment here. The ‘Titantic’ memorial was a sad
reminder of your community’s link to such an infamous tragedy.
Do you organise local wildlife walks or talks? You would have bats living under your bridge, so an evening’s guided
walk here in the summer would help raise awareness about these protected native species.
It was good to see ivy growing on the boundary walls of the Church car park, also on the boundary wall of the
farmyard adjacent to the main square. Ivy provides food and shelter for wildlife and in particular is one of the few
sources of nectar late in the season.
It was great to read that you won a ‘Pride of Place’ award but please do not nail such signs to trees. This can
introduce disease into trees.
Sustainable Waste and Resource Management / Bainistiú Acmhainní agus Dramhaíola Inbhuanaithe:
This category is about managing our resources wisely – not simply recycling so it was good to read you attended a
workshop on this with ideas from the Council’s Environmental Awareness Officer. You have detailed a number of
relevant actions in your entry form this year such as the installation of water butts. Do you compost your green
waste? Do you use your own compos in your landscaping schemes? Growing your own fruit and vegetables helps
to reduce the amount of miles food is transported. The church has earned the community a point by supplying a
holy water dispenser with a pushbutton tap! This tap prevents unnecessary wastage of water. It is suggested your
review your long-term plan for this category as you could achieve a lot more points here but the current proposed
actions will not help you gain these.
Tidiness and Litter Control / Slachtmhaireacht agus Rialú Bruscair:
Thanks to all of your litter pickers in particular the Killeentierna Youth Club members. You are working on strimming
and maintaining approach roads. Do not be afraid to let some strips of grass grow longer so they can flower and
provide nectar whilst still looking good. Watch old external advertising signs on the outside of commercial premises
that need to be removed.
Residential Streets & Housing Areas / Sráideanna Cónaithe & Ceantair Tithíochta:
There was a high standard of presentation of homes in Currow. Homes in both Park More and Lake View estates
looked well and it was lovely to see so many of these had shrubs growing between the pavement and boundary
Dicksgrove lodge is a quaint residence that caught the eye of the adjudicator. It is suggested that you could
purchase some shrubs for the estates that could be planted where the residents wish, that also local bees enjoy.
Approach Roads, Streets & Lanes / Bóithre Isteach, Sráideanna & Lánaí:
The turn off for Currow from the N65 was very nicely landscaped and would entice those not even going to Currow
to have a look! There were lovely shrubs and perennials in the landscaped beds here. What set this off nicely was
the beech hedging planted as a border at the back of the beds. This was indeed a nice welcome by the GAA who
were hosting Glencarr/ Manorhamilton Co Leitrim as part of the weekend’s festival . Your adjudicator particularly
liked the new tree planting as you turn up this road. These will mature into a lovely avenue of trees drawing you
towards Currow. Do check the support straps on these trees are some of them looked and could damage the bark.
Concluding Remarks:
Currow TidyTowns has great support from across your community. All businesses, the school and community
groups such as the GAA all work hard to enhance Currow. You live in a wonderful rural setting so embrace this with
natural planting schemes such as the lovely new planting at the Park Meadow Area. Over 20 years of effort has
resulted in a lovely community so well done to you in all of your efforts.

You can contact The Maine Valley Post on…
Anyone in The Maine Valley Post catchment area who would like to send us news and captioned photographs for inclusion can send them to: jreidy@mainevalleypost.com
Queries about advertising and any other matters regarding The Maine Valley Post can also be sent to that address or just ring: 087 23 59 467