SHANNON took 273 marks from a possible 400 in this year’s Tidy Towns Competition, the results of which were published this week. Adjudicators visited the town in June and they had a broadly positive view of Shannon, awarding it nine marks out of 10, in the general impression section.
In their report on Shannon, the adjudicators said a lot of progress has been made.
“Having first visited Shannon in 1973, it is hard to believe how much it has improved over the intervening years. It is now a wonderful town in which to live, work and play and a credit to everyone who has committed energy, enthusiasm and hard work in bringing it to the stage it has reached.
“No doubt, we will witness many more milestones in its evolution over the coming years and we look forward to seeing the changes on future visits.”
There were words of praise for the built environment in the town.
“Shannon has certainly grown and improved over the years. We thought we knew the town, having visited the town centre several times over the years. However, we must thank you for giving us the opportunity to discover Shannon’s hidden charms.
The adjudicators said they were impressed with the signage in the area, including traffic signs and the nameplates on roads and residential estates. The wide use of Irish was also complimented.
Addressing the town centre, the adjudicators found the SkyCourt Shopping Centre “offered an excellent range of shops to locals and visitors” and described the Town Square as “a wonderful amenity and it was a good idea to locate an oratory within the Square (hopefully it will open soon)”.
“Petrol stations in the town were operating with very tidy forecourts. McDonalds and Lidl premises were also neatly presented. Murphy’s Cottage Restaurant operates in a wonderful thatched cottage.”
In general Shannon is quite tidy, they found.
“The co-operation between the Tidy Towns Committee, Clare County Council, Shannon Town Council and the wider community is commendable and has certainly been paying dividends. The overall impression of the town during our visit was that it was well managed and, in general, quite tidy. While we were there, weeding was taking place and grassed areas were being cut, the activities were quite impressive.”
Some problems that they did note were two pieces of graffiti they observed and weed growth along the pavement leading to St Aidan’s Community School and a dumped car and caravan at Drumgeely Hill.
Mayor of Shannon Seán McLoughlin said that the town had performed very strongly. “There was an improvement of seven points on last year and I’d have to say well done to all the people who were involved, they’ve done a fantastic job.”
However, he felt the county council could have offered more support. “The council let them down badly. They haven’t done anything about the roundabout at the town centre and that’s been a mass of weeds for a long time.”
Councillor McLoughlin also called for more people to get involved in the Tidy Towns effort in the coming year.