What the Tidy Towns judges said about Crinkle

Crinkle scored an impressive 292 marks in this year's Tidy Towns competition

Express Reporter

Reporter:

Express Reporter

Tidy Towns

Tidy Towns

Crinkle scored 292 marks in this year's Tidy Towns competition, four more than last year.

Community Involvement & Planning / Rannpháirtíocht an Phobail & Pleanáil:
Crinkle is most welcome to the 2017 Supervalu Tidy Towns Competition.
Thank you kindly for excellent concise application form accompanied by straightforward one page front and back 5
year task plan.
The map supplied was clear and indicated the areas that adjudicator needed to visit which made then task all the
easier for someone who was not that familiar with the geography of the village.
The committee of eighteen is rather large to operate as an effective unit maybe there is a main committee with sub
groups that are assigned different categories of the competition.
If this is the case I would recommend that you state that fact in next year’s competition application.
The adjudicator is pleased to note that the committee is active within the Offaly Tidy Towns Network
It’s very important to share ideas with other centres and build up a sense of cooperation.
The competitive edge of parish rivalry can still exist but in a more friendly manner!!
Offaly Local Development Company supports you under the TUS and RSS schemes which are great bonus for a
small village such Crinkle.
Good to note too that local businesses support you in practical ways and this type of support is necessary for a
small village of your size that may not be in a position to self fund its work.
Communication methods
Your comments on contributing to the development of your local community have been noted.
One in particular stands out for this adjudicator namely promoting a sense of neighbourliness and belonging.
Helping combating loneliness and isolation, which of course is somewhat prevalent in Rural Ireland at present
because of the manner in which life has become so hurried, is a key component of what community spirit is about.


Built Environment and Streetscape / An Timpeallacht Thógtha agus Sráid-dreacha:
The Committee has been very proactive in addressing issues that have a little negative effect on the village and
Crinkle is no different than other village of its size where even one unoccupied or derelict premises or sites stand
out.
Usually as in your case the problem stems from lack of clarity of ownership.
You are wished well with your positive efforts to address the situation and the areas in question were noted by the
adjudicator during his walkabout.
The road surfaces have been made good since the last time the adjudicator visited Crinkle some years back.
Foptpaths, especially on Military Road, were in good condition except for few patches such as near the Post Office
on Barrack Street and near the Hoarding opposite the Thatch Pub.
The village is not unduly affected by overhead wiring which creates an untidy appearance and street lighting
stanchions were clean and well maintained.

The adjudicator felt that the notice board depicting the history of Crinkle Military Barracks could be upgraded as it
was looking a little faded.
Of course improvements such as this depend on funding and maybe a committee member could be assigned to
contact the Heritage Officer in Offaly County Council to determine if support could be forthcoming under the
Municipal Area or County PPN structures.
The National School was very well maintained and it looks like that it has a large catchment area to cater for as it is
quite large for a village the size of Crinkle.
The Thatch,which is synonymous with Crinkle, was also presented to a high standard.
The Adjudicator was impressed with the quality bi lingual street signs.
Crinkle of course is very much associated with a military past associated with the Prince of Wales Leinster
Regiment of the British army hence the street names.
One was curious about the origins of the name Swag Street and it would be good if there was an information
leaflet/brochure available to visitors outlining the village’s unique historical background.
Crinkle Superstore is a busy focal point of the village and was well presented, not sure if the store sign colour
reflects the local GAA club but it certainly stands out.
Like many villages Crinkle has a few older established businesses that seem to have closed.
The two large employers in the village Grants and Milnes presented their respective properties to a high standard.
Most private residences were also presented to a high standard and boundary walls and side entrances, where
relevant, were clean and tidy.
The GAA grounds which are situated a little outside the village also were in good condition and had a well appointed
parking area for patrons.
Overall the standard was good and on par with the standard attained last year.


Landscaping and Open Spaces / Tírdhreachú agus Spásanna Oscailte:
Crinkle is a village that has an abundance of trees that give a very appealing look especially as one looks down
Military Road
Green areas, and there are a few very pleasant examples, were tidy and not overtly cut tight in order to encourage
bees.
The entrances into the village were enhanced by the additional flower boxes and it gives an inviting look as one
approaches off the first turn from Birr Town similarly with the entrance from the Roscrea end.
The adjudicator felt that one or two of the stone containers would be better served if they had annuals of similar size
rather that one large plant surrounded by annuals such as marigolds.
Whitford Cross was visited and certainly the changes are very effective and will give a year round balance.
You are wished well with your plans for the derelict site opposite GAA Grounds at Boherdeel Road.
Overall the standard was very good and warrants an additional mark.


Wildlife, Habitats and Natural Amenities / Fiadhúlra, Gnáthóga agus Taitneamhachtaí Nádúrtha:
Good observation and positive reaction to the presence of Japanese knotweed in the area as this is a most invasive
plant that has created problems right around the country.
As well as contacting the Heritage officer it might be no harm to Google some of the individual companies that offer
advice services on the control of this very destructive plant.
Your approach to the treatment of green areas has already been alluded to in the previous section
Attending regular talks on matters relating to bio diversity will give committee members exposure to topics such as
pollination and how to encourage it.
The adjudicator would love to see the committee interacting with the teachers in Crinkill National School to promote
and foster an interest in children on this wide topic of wildlife habitats and bio diversity in its entirety.


Sustainable Waste and Resource Management / Bainistiú Acmhainní agus Dramhaíola Inbhuanaithe:
The objective in this category is to promote a greater awareness of the need to produce less waste at source.
Well done on the development of the community garden thus encouraging locals to embrace the concept of
communal working together.
The adjudicator notes your enthusiasm to have a lifestyle reflective of the community spirit that prevails in Crinkill.
The Compost Tumbler Workshop is one of the most innovative ideas that the adjudicator has encountered in this
category since its re birthed inception a few years back.
Well done to the Crinkill National School now going for its 4th Green Flag an excellent achievement by any
standards.
Overall a standard on par with last year.
The following are a few websites that would you give you ideas for future projects under this category.
www.localprevention.ie and www.sustainableprocessing.ie these coupled with the green home programme
www.greenhome.ie.
Also it is worth looking at a number of websites that support and promote the idea of the circular economy.


Tidiness and Litter Control / Slachtmhaireacht agus Rialú Bruscair:
Like a multitude of communities large and small Crinkle Tidy Towns has made the annual National An Taisce Spring
Clean Day part of its work programme and well done on this.
Suggesting a county wide spring clean day similar to Offaly County Council is very laudable and hopefully the
council might accede to your request which in reality would benefit every community in the county.
The cost associated with this operation could be substantial so maybe the idea of a generous sponsor, similar to
Limerick, might be an option.
It is obvious that you have got the support of the local community as the majority of local residents have tidy
premises that are well maintained.
The matter of illegal dumping has been highlighted in no uncertain terms by you the committee and the area of
concern was visited by the adjudicator and has improved immeasurably
The following are a few other observations that adjudicator noted during the walkabout.
The litter pickups are paying dividends as there was very little evident of the evening in question.
One or two side areas were noted as being a little untidy but nothing that cannot be improved upon by making all
residents aware of your efforts to create an a tidier and litter free Crinkle.
Just be aware of residue at footpath kerbsides and do not let it build up.
In relation to the undergrounding of cables and removal of unnecessary poles the adjudicator hopes that you will be
successful in quest.
The obstacle here is the lack of funding at present but it may come under the renewed programme for town and
village renewal.


Residential Streets & Housing Areas / Sráideanna Cónaithe & Ceantair Tithíochta:
Your work in getting the Offaly County Council to address the issues including the illegal dumping at Curraun was
an excellent example of lobbying on behalf of the community so well done.
The idea of a housing cooperative to buy some of these properties is an excellent one and you are wished well with
the project.
The adjudicator visited all the housing developments in the village and the vast majority of home owners in these
have the properties presented to a high standard.
Some of the boundary walls in O Brien Terrace and Cemetery Road were in need of painting but the adjudicator
appreciates that painting a fairly long dashed wall can be somewhat expensive.
Is it possible that a painting programme funded from local sponsorship could be put in place that would allow eligible
householders, especially older people whose sole income maybe the state pension, to avail of small grants to cover
costs.


Approach Roads, Streets & Lanes / Bóithre Isteach, Sráideanna & Lánaí:
Some excellent work has been done on the approach roads since last year and the improvements to sections of the
footpath on Military Road makes a huge difference to that immediate area.
There are a number of other sections of footpath that are in need of repair as they are cracked or uneven and could
be a little dangerous.
It is important that you keep lobbying your local council representatives to put forward a case on your behalf to
make good any improvements that are needed within the village.
Approach roads in from Roscrea and from Birr were well presented and give a good impression of the village
outskirts for any first time visitor.
Overall the standard was very good and warrants an increase of an additional mark.


Concluding Remarks:
It was a pleasant experience to re visit Crinkle after a number of years and re acquaint oneself with its military history
as well as walk around the village on what was a pleasant evening.
The Tidy Towns committee is very proactive and progress has been made in the competition year on year.
Well done on your efforts to date.