A busy weekend forecast for Boyle and the Forest Park
This weekend sees a further reopening of our country, and locally – the partial reopening of our most popular tourist attraction – Lough Key Forest Park. From today (June 4th) you can enjoy the food truck and coffee cart, a bigger and better information point, the ‘Lough Key Experience’ including the Tree Canopy Walk with refurbished side tunnels, caravan park (Full for June Bank Holiday weekend), Cecil’s fun fact trail, Lough Key to Boyle Cycleway and the refurbished Astro MUGA. The adventure playground is still under maintenance and will reopen later.
With the weather forecast to be reasonably good, there will no doubt be large crowds in the Park (and hopefully the town) for the weekend. With the crowds comes the waste and rubbish and let’s hope we do not see a recurrence of the scenes of the May Bank Holiday weekend when some visitors left their rubbish on the picnic tables and adjacent to the bins – please bring your rubbish home if the bins are full. In addition, if you are visiting Rockingham this weekend, please park responsibly and only in the designated car parks – not on the grass, not on the double yellow lines and not at the entrances to the cycleway, which may have to be used by emergency vehicles if the need arises.
Hats off to Boyle Celtic and Boyle GAA clubs
Hats off to both Boyle Celtic and Boyle GAA clubs who epitomize the positive changes that are happening here in our town, as both clubs rally together with an exciting new fundraising draw featuring a car, holiday and much more (see www.winacarandholiday.ie)
The draw was launched yesterday afternoon following months of planning by an enthusiastic group of members in both organisations. It is doubtful you would have seen the GAA and Soccer clubs come together like this many years ago but everything is changing, and here in Boyle, after years of effort by a number of people, the negative past is now consigned to the scrapheap and unity and positivity is the way forward.
Should funding be sought for any other sporting developments around Boyle in the future, the state agencies will welcome with open arms this type of ‘coming together’ of organisations, which is something they have said they want to see in any community grant application that is applied for.
Why are people not living in the town centre?
Further to our piece in the Boyle’d Pot last week on the small number of people who are currently living in Boyle town centre, our attention has been drawn to two local authority schemes currently in place in Boyle that members of the public may not be aware of. The first, which probably does not apply in the current climate, but will do at some stage in the future for those wishing to start a business in Boyle, is the ‘Rates Incentive Scheme’. Under this scheme, businesses who commence operation in a vacant building in the town are entitled to a rates reduction on a sliding scale ranging from 100% in year 1 to 20% in Year 5. There are conditions and you can read more here
The second scheme that has been recently introduced is called the ‘Buy and Renew Scheme’. In this instance, the local authority will buy and refurbish long term vacant properties in Boyle for social housing use. The focus under the Buy and Renew will be on older stock in urban areas with a view to tackling dereliction and improving streetscapes. Read more here
Finally, some have asked what is the reason for so few people living in the town centres. The reasons are varied and the same in the five towns, along with Boyle, that were chosen for the pilot ‘Town Centre Living’ initiative a few years ago. The common problems identified were: negative equity, protected structure and subsequent cost of repair, lack of accessible funding, property ownership dynamics, inertia and no back gardens. Thankfully the Government has taken on board the findings of the six towns and are currently looking at ways to incentivise town centre living which will be good for Boyle going forward.
Local Castle redevelopment with An Bord Pleanala
A case of local interest has been lodged with An Bord Pleanala for adjudication. The case, which was lodged on 19th May, involves Clontykilla Castle on the shores of Lough Key. The description of the case reads as follows: “Whether the construction of parapets or battlements to the north west facing corner tower is or is not development or is or is not exempted development. ( Protected structure)”. Parties to the case are listed as Roscommon County Council (Planning Authority Referrer) and Columbia Ventures Corporation Limited (Owner Occupier).
N4 dual carriageway could open ‘later in the year’
With travel restrictions eased, motorists on the N4 from Boyle to Sligo can see massive progress on the Castlebaldwin to Collooney road development project. Roadbridge – the main contractor has issued an update on the project saying: “As the majority of heavy construction on the earthworks and structures is nearing completion, we will continue with pavement, landscaping, reinstatement, and finishing works into 2021 with a target opening of later in the year. This of course is pending no major disruptions due to adverse weather or
Covid 19 restrictions”.
Roadbridge also have made public some interesting statistics on the project: 1,800,000m3 of material excavated and 1,200,000m3 placed in road embankments. Lagan Asphalt, the pavement contractors, have currently placed over 72,000 tonne of CBM(Cement Bound Material) which is used as a lower base layer, and 52,000 tonne of asphalt material on the mainline. The programme for wearing course, which is the final pavement layer, will commence in Q2 of this year. Following placement of the wearing course will be the installation of crash barriers, which are installed along the centre of the road, and then road markings.
The new dual carriageway road, when opened later this year, will cut journey time drastically between Boyle and Sligo and will open up many opportunities for both towns.
A blind man visits Texas. When he gets to his hotel room, he feels the bed. “Wow, this bed is big!”
“Everything is big in Texas,” says the bellhop.
The man heads downstairs to the bar, settles into a huge barstool and orders a beer. A mug is placed between his hands. “Wow these drinks are big!”
The bartender replies, “Everything is big in Texas.”
After downing a few, the blind man asks where the bathroom is. “Second door to the right,” says the bartender.
The blind man heads for the bathroom but accidentally enters the third door, which leads to the swimming pool, and he falls in. Popping his head up from under the water and flailing his arms, he shouts, “Don’t flush, don’t flush!”