Archive for the 'Strangford Village and Lough' Category

COUNCILLOR ENRIGHT COLLECTS THOUSANDS OF LOCAL SIGNATURES FOR A&E CAMPAIGN

Cadogan Enright collects signatures at local Rugby club for Hospital accident and emergency department's return.

Cadogan Enright collects signatures at local Rugby club for Hospital accident and emergency department’s return.

In addition to the 2600 signatures he collected in Saul, Raholp, Strangford, Kilcleif, Ballyhornan, Chapeltown and Killough, Cadogan Enright collects more signatures at Ballynahinch Rugby Club to prevent the closure of the A&E department in the Downe Hospital. Many sporting clubs agreed that the Accident and Emergency service was essential. Cllr Enright collected signatures at Dunleath park, Ballynahinch Rugby club and sent petitions to over 50 GAA clubs in the surrounding area.

Election Launch by Community Leaders and Farmers for Councillor Cadogan Enright

Community Leaders and Farmers Support Councillor Cadogan Enright’s re-election bid in Downpatrick

 Community leaders from villages across Lecale turned up to support Independent Downpatrick Councillor Cadogan Enright’s re-election bid on Tuesday, signing and handing in his nomination  nomination papers at Down Council’s Ardglass Road HQ.

Strangford Community Association Chair Diarmuid Riordan said “Councillor Cadogan Enright has earned a place in the new Council through his tireless work and genuine effort to help and work with our communities. We need at least one of our councillors to be independent, winning his seat by hard work, not just by belonging to one of the larger parties.”

Kilclief Residents Association Chair Maurice Denvir said “I nominated Cllr. Cadogan Enright for

the new Council election, on account of his excellent work in Kilclief and other areas locally. Councillor Enright has worked year in and year out for this area, and is the only Councillor we see around here on a regular basis working on the ground”.

Ardglass Development Association Chair Mary McCargo agreed and said “Cllr. Cadogan Enright represents a radical alternative to the ‘business as usual’ approach of other politicians in our area and is never afraid to tackle the difficult campaigns that Councillors in larger parties shy away from”.

Local farmers leader Alan Montgomery said “Councillor Cadogan Enright has made a significant contribution to the economic well-being of farmers in the Lecale area though his work on renewable energy projects and economic development. The farming  community needs this work to continue.”

Retired Councillor and local Green Party Leader Bill Corry praised Councillor Enright’s work with wildlife and environmental projects since the last local elections and called on local environmentalists to support the re-election campaign saying “for many years past, Downpatrick town and the Lecale coastal villages have elected a cross-community, Independent or green candidate. Councillor Cadogan Enright has been a catalyst for change in Down Council, putting the needs of Downpatrick and District ahead of party politics. I call on voters to ensure we keep an alternative voice to the domination of big parties alive in Downpatrick and along the Lecale Coast”.

Attached is a photograph of, from the left,

Strangford Community Association Chair Diarmuid Riordan,

Kilclief Residents Association Chair Maurice Denvir

Ballyhornan Realm vice-chair Barry Mervyn

Ardglass Development Association Chair Mary McCargo

Councillor Cadogan Enright, wife Brenda and son CadÓg

Ardglass Festival Committee Gerry Casey

Raholp community activist Tom Reynolds and wife Mary

Padráig MacThiranán, Knocnashinna, Downpatrick

Bill Corry, Downpatrick, ex Green Party Councillor and election agent

Chair of local Farmers collective DDFFRE Alan Montgomery, Rossglass

Secretary of local Farmers collective DDFFRE, David Chambers Tullynaskeagh

STRANGFORD VILLAGE ELECTION CAMPAIGN 2014

Here is the front page of my Strangford Village election leaflet

Strangford front page

and here is a link to campaigns and issues I am highlighting in Strangford Strangford Canvass Leaflet – what I have been doing in Strangford since last elections

REPORT BACK TO FELLOW COUNCILORS FROM MEETING WITH STRANGFORD COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION LAST FRIDAY

Dear Fellow Councillors,

I met with members of the Strangford Community Association on Friday as promised and here is my report back to you as requested.

The Community Association agreed that they had indeed met with Marie Ward and her staff and reviewed her proposals back in 2011, but had explained to her at that time that what Council was proposing was way off the mark, and would render the lower green unusable for the community. Hence they were enormously surprised when an almost identical plan came back as part of the Mournes Coastal Route plan.

As you know, DRAP has, since then, funded a Village Plan which, following much local consultation,  is widely supported by the community. It has the backing of the Festival Committee. The Inverbrena hall committee and local sports and other clubs.

This SCA plan sees the lower village green continuing as the centre of village life, in the community and being used for a wide range of community activities.

Examples of the lower green being used as a multi use venue for events include;:

  • The annual village festival
  • The annual fun-fair
  • Used for the mobile cinema which visits Strangford regularly
  • As a mustering point for groups arriving in Strangford before embarkation on the Ferry
  • As a scenic display area for vintage cars during their visit
  • As a place to put the big marque tent for big groups of tourists. For instance the bicycle tour that regularly calls in Strangford for refreshments
  • As a (free) launching and recovery area for boats belonging to local people also for visiting tourists and the emergency services (police, coastguard  and fire services) alike. This has been made more difficult these last 2 years as Council has turned it into an unofficial car-park for people, too lazy to use the ferry car-park provided.
  • As a recreation area for picnics, children playing etc.

Thus you will understand that when I shared Marie Wards plan with the community  members, there was a very negative reaction. Key local objections included;

  • Disagreement over her effective change of use from the green’s traditional use as a common area.
  • Fencing off the green and surrounding it with shrubs would eliminate almost all the uses the green is currently put to, outlined above.  The proposed shrubs would have to be resistant to regular salt water flooding!
  • Putting a giant piece of public art in the centre of the tiny bit of green space remaining would wipe out the lower green as a usable social space.
  • They were not happy about losing green grass on the seaward side either, they saw no purpose in paving over the green area. The area beside the quay has been strengthened and protected with a plastic matrix material that allows grass to grow though whilst preventing damage.  The community are happy with this arrangement as it facilitates the lower green as a flexible space that can be used for multiple purposes – extending up from the water during the boat launching season – or reaching down to seaward to create a bigger recreation area for children or for events being held on the green.
  • The proposed fencing and shrubbery would block the drive-in entrance on the village side prevent ingress and exit by vehicles like vintage cars, fairground vehicles and so forth.
  • No-one seems to want the ‘public art’. If we have to have it they suggest it could go on the upper green which is already used for ornamental purposes – the community does not want the lower green to be converted to another ornamental space as proposed by Council
  • The Strangford Committee plan envisaged the area where the old bus stop used to be (outside Kevin Óg’s) being set back to accomadate buses without blocking traffic. Local people DO NOT WANT the two cherry trees to be cut down as envisaged by the Council Plan, The Council plan incorrectly labels the ferry shelter as a bus shelter in its plan, this is not a bus-stop. The local community regards the new ferry shelter as an eyesore and worse than useless as a protection from the elements, and wants the old shelter in the ferry terminal to be re-opened.
  • People are concerned that the paddling area is marked as ‘redevelopment’. This area needs its pebble beach renewed, but does not need redeveloped. The association noted that sand attracts oil from the ferry and elsewhere, but pebbles stay clean

Marie’s compromise Council  diagram simply removes the formalisation of car-parking in place of illegal parking on the green. This is not enough of a concession – the community needs the maximum amount of green space for the lower green to facilitate its traditional purposes – and the purpose envisaged in the Strangford Village Plan – i.e. being the beating heart of the local community

Given the fact that it is clear that Council Management appear flatly determined to press ahead with their plan, only a consensus by councillors which states that the key aspects of the Strangford Village plan must be observed, is likely to stop management pressing ahead against the clearly articulated views of the local community, as expressed in their village plan,

I hope we can weigh in behind the local community on this, we basically need to tell the Mournes Coastal Project team that they have got it badly wrong in Strangford, and to remove the points objected to above – and include the proposals in the DRAP-funded village plan

Can I suggest an early meeting to instruct management on ‘the will of the council’.

Please feel free to call me if you have any questions

Cllr Cadogan Enright

07590462329

STRANGFORD VILLAGE RESISTS MOVES BY COUNCIL ON VILLAGE GREEN

 Press Release by Cllr CADOGAN ENRIGHT  on behalf of Strangford Community Association

Strangford Village Community Association met Friday afternoon to consider compromise proposals from Council over the re-development of the lower village green abutting the slipway in the centre of the village.

examining plans at Stranford Village Green,  Cllr Cadogan Enright on the Lower Green by the slipway. Village committee Chair Diarmuid Riordan is right and treasurer Gary Laverty is left.

examining plans at Stranford Village Green, Cllr Cadogan Enright on the Lower Green by the slipway. Village committee Chair Diarmuid Riordan is right and treasurer Gary Laverty is left.

This followed a meeting of local Councillors at Down District Council on Wednesday afternoon, where Councilor Cadogan Enright was delegated to meet with the Community Association and see if a compromise could be found between the community’s DRAP-funded Strangford Village Plan and the plans put forward by Council management for the lower green area.

Councillor Enright said, “It was clear that the latest proposals from Council are not even beginning to reflect the Strangford Village Plan that was formulated by local people with the help of the Down Rural Area Partnership.  Councils’ Mournes Coastal Route tourist initiative basically seeks to turn most of the lower green into an ornamental space like the upper green”.

Community Association Chair Diarmuid Riordan said “The lower village green is a recreational space for locals and tourists alike. It needs to be preserved for the Village Festival or the funfair or cinema, and for continuing the tradition of launching little boats, or for a safe children’s ‘paddling area’. Council’s so-called ‘Mournes Coastal Route’ can only benefit from such common sense, making our village green a far more attractive space for visitors than just another car-park. We already have an ornamental space at the upper green, we don’t need a second one.”

Community Association treasurer Gary Laverty said “We hope that the current negotiations being brokered between Council and Strangford villagers achieves success. The latest Council compromise diagram simply removes the formalisation of car-parking in place of illegal parking on the green. This is not enough of a concession – the community needs the maximum amount of green space for the lower green to facilitate its traditional purposes – and the purpose envisaged in the Strangford Village Plan – i.e. being the beating heart of the local community.”

Councillor Enright said “Council management declined last week to meet with village representatives, and sought a meeting instead with local councillors to review the revised plans. I know that Strangford Community Association village committee continues to demand a meeting with senior council management. I believe that local Councillors  will have to instruct Council management meet with local people and reflect their needs. It will only help tourism as the village plan was well thought out. I have written to my fellow councilors outlining compromise proposals from the community association meeting on Friday. Hopefully Councillors will ensure that Council Management will see sense, and this issue can be finally laid to rest to the satisfaction of all”.

STRANGFORD VILLAGE RESISTS MOVES BY COUNCIL ON VILLAGE GREEN

Strangford Village Community Association has hit out at Down Council attempting to redevelop Strangford Village Green without consulting with local people. Down Council intends to make permanent its unofficial conversion of the slipway area into a car park and to build a huge piece of public art in would then remain of the lower Green as well as other extensive works on the green using funds from the Down Rural Area Partnership (DRAP) for as part of their Mourne Coastal project.

Cllr Cadogan Enright (left) with Strangford Community Association Committee protest Down Council designs on village green

Cllr Cadogan Enright (left) with Strangford Community Association Committee protest Down Council designs on village green

Councilor Cadogan Enright has attempted to intervene and brokered a meeting last week between Mark Mohan representing Council management and the Village Association. Cllr Enright said “there were easy an obvious compromises where both sides could get what they want to the benefit of the village green. I was shocked when Mark Mohan later informed us on Friday night that the council Director concerned (Marie Ward) had refused to meet village committee representatives to work out a compromise”.

Community Association Chair Diarmuid Riordan said “Local people are appalled. To make matters worse Council officers are aware that the village committee were given substantial funding by the Down Rural Area Partnership (DRAP)  to consult with local people and develop an ‘Integrated Village Plan’ to reflect what local people would like to see in all areas of village life. This included having the Village Green as a shared space for all the community and tourists alike. Down Council however has decided to press ahead with its own plans, and intends to approach DRAP to fund these plans in defiance of the wishes of local people.

Association Treasurer Gary Laverty said Cllr Enright said, “ Strangford Community Association are writing to DRAP to urge the Rural Development office in Ards not to release the funds for the Strangford part of the Mournes Coastal scheme, as the basic requirement under the DRA P scheme for community consultation have not been met.”

Cadogan Enright said, “The slipway is almost the only public one left on this side of Strangford Lough. The Council has turned it into an unofficial carpark even though a Ferry carpark already exists. Both local people and tourists alike need somewhere to launch their boats. Not everyone is in a yacht club. I have photographs going back to the 50’s and 60’s  and before of the slipway.  This is part of the fabric of the village. This is going to turn into another ‘Strangford Fence’ campaign. We have only just finished fighting off DRD’s attempt to fence off New Quay, now we will have to fight off a new land-grab on a community space by the Council”.

Diarmuid Riordan agreed and said “A statue of Lenin would be more welcome in Kiev at the moment than Councils statue in the middle of our green. This is the heart of the village where the fairground, the community festival and the public life of the village takes place. If we have to have a statue, then there are 2 spaces in the upper green where they could be situated.”

The Village committee continues to demand a meeting with senior council management, and has vowed to resist any proposal inimical to the best interests of the lower green or Strangford Village as a whole.

Strangford Journalist speaks out on A and E

Marie Louise McCrory speaks for Strangford and for us all.

I collected A and E petitions in Strangford village all last week, getting the last of them from Fr McGrady at Stella Maris Church today.

Here are the views of one person who was in  Stella Maris Church

Help force NI Water to respect our beaches

You can help me raise water purity standards on our local beaches this year by simply taking photos when you are at the beach during 2014.

To get the highest standards of water purity in our local beaches, we have to be recognised as ‘Bathing Waters’ under the EU directive – and need to back it up with photos showing the beaches are used for walking, bathing and family outings.

Only photographs from this year’s bathing water season onwards can be considered. There have to be a minimum of 45 bathers on one occasion or 100 beach users on two occasions.

Beach LecaleRead the full explanation of what’s going on with our local beaches here;

If you or your family can organise pictures like this (bring 45 friends – I am!) then email, Facebook or post them to me as part of this campaign.

Annual report to voters and constituents in every house in every village in Lecale

Dear Constituent,
I would like to wish you and your families a Happy New Year.

I am delivering my 8th annual report to every house in every village in Lecale this week to explain to you on how I have been representing your views on Down District Council and other agencies. I am the only local councillor to deliver an annual report to every house in Downpatrick.

Here is the electronic version Cadogan Enright Lecale Report January 2014

This newsletter can only be a summary my work for you over the last year. My website provides much more detail – see
 www.enright.ie  or search for ‘Cadogan Enright’ on Facebook where I post or log my activities as a councillor on a weekly basis.

Cllr Cadogan Enright

FLOODING FROM TIDAL SURGE IN LECALE VILLAGES – week to January 8th

I found the response of Roads Service and Council to the tidal surge on Friday good in most Lecale Villages WITH 2 EXCEPTIONS
Examining  Storm Debris around houses in Coney Island before high tide1. The Roads Service would not help Coney Island as the road is deemed ‘private’ (this basically means the road is just a track) – the sea wall is partly breached in two places. So it seemed to me that the Council must protect ratepayers in Coney Island before going to the assistance of the Roads Service in other areas – but  they had no assistance on Friday from anyone.   Sadly when I phoned emergency duty manager  Michael Lipsett as the manager in charge of response, he  did not agree, so I have tabled the following NOTICE OF MOTION for the next Council meeting.

“That the Councils emergency plan for dealing with floods and other emergencies will be amended to deal with the protection of ratepayers in areas that other agencies are unable to provide assistance.

For instance Roads Service is unable to provide flood protection to Coney Island during tidal surges. It should therefore be the priority of the Council to ensure that these few areas be attended to first, before going to the assistance of other agencies.”

I spend several hours on Saturday trying to get some bags for Coney Island ahead of Sunday. As of 4pm today I had nothing but expressions of annoyance from the PSNI and the English-based help line that NI Councils were not answering their telephone numbers today ahead of Sundays surge. There were apparently many more like me seeking a few sandbags. I passed on my complaints and these other complaints to council management. Eventually on Saturday evening at 4.34 M Lipsett wrote out acknowledging these complaints and asking people to follow the councils ansafones directions.
In advance of Sunday, I have asked the council to give me sufficient sand bags to fill the two holes at Coney Island  – the first one would take 10 sand bags, and maybe 15 for the second one.
 
Cllr Enright delivering bags to the Riordan family -  Sandbags arrived a bit late in Strangford 2. Assistance arrived too late Strangford Village and several premises were left flooded out unnecessarily, and then the Roads Service lorry left too early leaving the Council lorry with too few sandbags to satisfy demand – presumably we can get the timings right on Sunday – I have contacted flood relief to make sure there is a more timely response here for the next 2 days especially Sunday.
 
Displaying Flooding over football fields in KilloughElsewhere, There were plenty of dramatic images with the football pitch at Killough being under water  and the bridge over Station Road between Killough and Ardglass being partly washed away on the Killough side
I was impressed with the Roads Service helping (in particular) Fishermans Row in Killough