County Mayor's Diary

Cllr Gillian Coughlan

Last week I was delighted to join Minister of State for Business, Employment and Retail Damien English on his visit to Cork County Council’s Local Enterprise Offices.

These outstanding resources for micro enterprises and entrepreneurs play a vital role in supporting the local economies of our towns and villages.

By supporting local business innovation and encouraging local spending, their mission plays a vital role in developing sustainable local economies. In the past year, they have helped businesses develop online presences and provided training and support to help businesses with opening safely.

Every sector of town and village life in the county showed incredible resilience, and the success of our reopening efforts is thanks to everyone working together, from businesses to community groups and statutory bodies. Seeing the hard work of our communities recognised is a source of great pride, which is why I was thrilled with the results of this year’s Tidy Towns competition.

Cork county towns and villages performed extraordinarily well, and Cobh truly stole the show, winning Ireland’s Tidiest Large Town 2021, being selected as the Overall Award Winner for the Covid 19 Community Award and securing a Young Persons in Tidy Towns Award for the south west and mid west region.

The judges’ reports are full of praise for the extensive work done by the local community and single out the success of outdoor dining, Cork County Council’s Streetscape Painting Scheme and the effort put in to enhancing the natural and historic features of the town.

On behalf of my colleagues in Cork County Council, I wish to express our pride in Cobh Tidy Towns. We look forward to working with the community in further enhancing the town through further public realm enhancements.

In North Cork, another project that centres the needs of the local community is coming to completion, and I joined Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Michael McGrath, in Kanturk to cut the ribbon on the new Link Road.

This 450 metre carriageway will improve access to Kanturk town centre and the new National School for pedestrians, bikes and vehicles.

It follows the path of a former railway line, and a section of that line, unearthed during the construction works, has been salvaged with a view to commemorating the history of the railway.

This line began transporting goods and passengers between Banteer station and Newmarket via the Mallow-Killarney line and Kanturk in 1889. This route connected people and businesses locally with the wider county, facilitating trade and development locally. The new link road in Kanturk is a continuation and an evolution of the project which began over one hundred years ago.

Community involvement in the development of towns and villages is central to success, and the strength of communities here in Cork county ensures that the years ahead will see remarkable accomplishments.