Community spirit in Mountmellick blossoms in support of Tidy Towns efforts

Community spirit in Mountmellick blossoms in support of Tidy Towns efforts

Tidy Towns members Barbara Lalor, Maura Reddin and Kitty Creighton with supporter Eileen Dunne

By Lynda Kiernan

Mountmellick in Laois is awash with colour and community spirit this summer, with new support flourishing for the tidy towns committee.

To help the Tidy Towns group boost their marks this year, local artists volunteered to paint colourful murals on vacant buildings, while Yarn Bombing Mountmellick threw an early ‘bombing’ in time for Tidy Towns judging.

The active Men’s Shed group have also lent a hand with cleaning and making windowboxes, kickstarting an overall atmosphere of volunteerism in the tow, with countless individuals doing their bit to help.

The group has now issued a huge thanks to everyone who is helping in any way.

“We are absolutely thrilled with how everyone has responded, people are so appreciative, we are even noticing more people picking litter up in the street,” Mountmellick Tidy Towns PRO Barbara Lalor told the Leinster Express.

They are getting donations of everything from flowers and window boxes to cups of tea and free lunches from grateful residents.

“I opened my door this morning to a huge donation of flowers from a local man John Hibbits who had grown them from seed, and another mural has appeared in Manor Court thanks to a young resident there Niamh Dunne. We love to see young people taking an interest, that is the way forward ,” Barbara said.

Her own favourite project is a boat now securely moored on the Convent Bridge riverbank, filled with plants, garnering lots of praise.

“It started as a joke, we are getting €12,000 from Inland Fisheries to upgrade the river walk later this year, and I asked if they could throw in a boat as well, and they did. It took us five hours to get it in place but it is worth it, I love how it turned out,” she said.

The yarnbombing has been a welcome bonus, with signs, bikes, trees, railings and even a car, covered with colourful woolly creations.

“The camaraderie is great, we have great craic. It really builds great community spirit when you work together, you can achieve so much,” Barbara said.

A faux 'housefront' on O’Moore Street, the product of many hands’ work, is also catching everyone’s eye.

Approach roads have all been cleaned and planted too, with thanks to local help.

Barbara thanks everybody who has helped them, including CE scheme workers.

“To all who have helped in any way to make our community a clean and safe place to live, a huge thank you. We couldn’t have done it without all the help and time given to us. Please feel free to come on board, new ideas and members are gratefully accepted,” said Barbara.

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