Sunday, October 12, 2008

New Council Boundary Commission
According to the Statistics Office, the population of Co Kildare grew by 38% between 1996 and 2006, that’s more than double the National average growth of 16.9%! As a result, the electoral boundaries have been reviewed and, with the huge growth of towns like Naas, Celbridge and Clane, Ballymore Eustace is one of the smaller communities to be moved to a new jurisdiction – that of Athy County Council.

Let me think – ‘Athy’ – what do I know about Athy? Mary Browne from Boleybeg hails from Athy! You didn’t know that? Our own Helen Dreelan is Matron of St Vincent’s Nursing Home and looks after our senior citizens the finest; Shaws Almost Nationwide are located in Athy; there’s a castle on the banks of the river and I’m nearly positive Athy is a recognised heritage town. There’s the Athy County Show and the Bluegrass Festival. And that completes my knowledge of Athy.

I shop in Naas, went to secondary school in Naas, socialise to a certain degree in Naas; my children learned to swim in Naas, attended CBS and St Marys College, Naas; my daughters live in Naas, I worked in Naas for years………….etc etc

My point being that ‘yanking’ Ballymore out of the Naas Electoral area and adding us to the Athy area is well, ludicrous! We have far more in common with our neighbours in Naas, Eadestown, Rathmore and Kilteel than we have with our fellow Lillies in the south. When is the last time you visited Athy?

Newbridge, Blessington and Tallaght I would drive to for meal/cinema night out or a few hours shopping but Athy?? Most of Kilcullen has also been assigned to the scope of Athy Council which is odd because the National Spatial Strategy earmarks Newbridge, Naas and Kilcullen as a collective growth triangle and previous oral hearings hosted by An Bord Pleanala cited this strategy repeatedly.

In latter years, we have built relations with the community of Kilcullen, particularly with the large number of students attending Cross and Passion College. Kilcullen provides excellent sporting facilities and their dramatic society is well, renowned! Brennans of Kilcullen and The Mart were busy spots with Nolans Butchers, Peacocke Shoe Repair and Berneys Pharmacy providing popular services.

Athy Electoral Area will be increased from a three-seater to four council seats in the next election.
Who are the current councillors representing Athy Council at the moment? You don’t know? Martin Miley, Mark Dalton or Rainsford Hendy ring a bell?

No? Apart from Athy, Harristown, Gilltown and Kilcullen, we will now be in an electoral area with Ballaghmoon, Ballybracken, Ballyshannon, Belan, Bert, Burtown, Carrigeen, Castledermot, Churchtown, Dunmanoge, Fontstown, Graney, Grangemellon, Inchaquire, Johnstown?, Kilberry, Kilkea, Kilrush, Moone, Narraghmore, Nurney, Skerries and Usk. Thanks to their campaign against a super dump, I’ve heard of Usk and I know Narraghmore and Ballitore ‘cos if I’ve missed the turn to St Lawrence’s GAA, I will pass through them……And we’ve all attended a wedding or golfed at Kilkea Castle.

Go on, how many of you have heard of half those townslands? It will be great crack at Athy Council next year……… Imagine a question being raised at committee level: “Mr Chairman, I want to draw your attention to the state of the roads in Coughlanstown East or Boleybeg”.

I suggest the Council design special ‘Sat Navs’ – rural satellite navigational equipment and large, very large laminated maps for chamber meetings because if we haven’t heard of these townslands before, I’m pretty damned sure Athy councillors haven’t heard of ours! Sadly – well, maybe not considering – I will not be contesting the next election; half my first preference votes were in Naas-Kill-Rathmore-Eadestown-Kilteel area so readers, I’d have as much chance of pulling votes in ‘Inchaquire’ as Dustin had in the Eurovision.

(I sometimes regret not running for election about 10 years ago when I had energy to burn and enjoyed working, attending meetings and staying on the computer till all hours. Now I enjoy burnin’ a scented candle and get excited at a good night’s sleep). Is that a mid-life crisis, do you think – more like mid-like paralysis……..

The new electoral guidelines increase Council seats to the following:
Athy – 4; Celbidge and Leixlip merge to form a 6 seater whilst Kildare remains at a 6 seater, Clane remains at 4 and Naas at 5.

Everytime the Electoral Commission looks at changing local or national elections, Ballymore gets moved around like a pawn in a game of chess. North Kildare, South Kildare, North, South, North, South….. Turn around twice and you won’t recognise the faces on the ballot papers……….

Fun and games next year, Readers. Do remember, this means we won’t have an option to vote for the councillors who currently serve us – Mary Glennon, Billy Hillis, Willie Callaghan, JJ Power and Paddy MacNamara……

I feel a Spanish trip coming on me……..I probably know more people in Torrevieja than I do in Athy……….

Rose B O Donoghue


Every Thursday at the bandhall.
Continues through July and August from 8pm
All beginners welcome, men/women/dads/mams/grannies and granddads!
It’s all fun
Contact Julie 0877557332


Has now finished for this year at the club, with so many *regular members having made so much progress we can very much look forward to the next year.
In the past 4 years we have held 3 seasons per year with the opportunity for new members to join any season. In the best interest of all at the club as from September 2008 our club will run on an annual basis only – IE: (Sept ’08 to July ’09) Beginners and new members are welcome to try out badminton during September but please note * From October 2nd only fee paid members will be insured to play *(see times and fees as detailed below)
Well done to all members for their participation in all events and fundraisers to date. Congratulations again to our ‘Player of the year’ “JOANNAN BURKE HAYES”

1 Member @€100 2 Members @ €150 3 Members @€200 4/5 Members €220

From September 2008:
3-4pm Beginners – Under 10’s only
4 – 5pm Under 13’s
5 – 6pm Under 13’s
6 – 7pm Under 13’s
7 – 8pm Over 13’s
8.30 Close
Adults may come any Thursday (from 8.30pm in September)
As non- members and pay just €4 for hours of fun!!

Thanks to: Alan and Sandra Priestly (for our wonderful parade work and continued support of our club)
Hilda Garrett (Carthy) Ryston 2008 was a special one and we appreciate all your help
Tommy Dwyer and all involved in the upkeep of our weekly venue The Bandhall.
All Parents for fees funding it all!
(Under 13’s) Jude O’Keefe, Liz Darby, Julie Molloy, Linda Murphy, Fiona Slevin, Holly Breay, and Laura Barrett
(Over 13’s) And Super progress is all thanks to Mary Campbell.
We look forward to matches with local clubs this year and invite all to call in at any time (posters will be displayed in the village)

Enquiries Phone: 0878218566

The Street Signage survey results are in!!!

In order to get a democratic opinion on what colours the street signage of Ballymore Eustace should be, 100 local people (including all members of the CDA and Tidy Towns committees) were asked to vote on three sample colour schemes.

100 people were surveyed as it was felt that this was a sizeable portion of the population of Ballymore Eustace and there had to be a cut off line because it would take forever and a day to survey every single person.

We presented voters with three colour schemes: ‘Cream print on Black background’, ‘Gold print on Black background’ and ‘Cream print on Green background’.

People were asked to rate the three colour schemes.
‘1’ was assigned to the colour each person liked most, ‘2’ was assigned to the colour they liked second best and ‘3’ was assigned to the colour they least liked.

By this method, when all one hundred numbers assigned to each colour are added, the colour scheme with the lowest number is the colour scheme which is the most popular. The colour scheme with the next highest number is the one which is second most popular. The colour scheme with the highest number is the one which is least popular.

The results of the street signage survey were as follows:
‘Cream print on Black background’ performs best with the lowest score of 186.
‘Gold print on Black background’ performs next best with a score of 205.
‘Cream print on Green background’ performs least best with the highest score of 209.

The results indicate that the ‘Cream print on black background’ colour scheme fared best and is the colour scheme we will proceed with for the street signage of Ballymore Eustace. It is also probably the best compromised situation between those surveyed that chose either of the other two colours as their first preference.

The CDA hope to progress the street signage project throughout the summer and hopefully by the end of summer 2008 Ballymore Eustace will have street signs!

Thanks to all who participated in our survey and thus had an input to this process.

Fiona Breslin
(Chairperson Ballymore Eustace CDA)


Water flowing free and fair in the Millennium Garden.

Thanks to the generous and unstinting efforts of several people in Ballymore Eustace, the Water Feature in the Millennium Garden in the village square is flowing again, after a long period of non‑operation.

· To MARTIN DEEGAN – a tireless worker for the good of Ballymore Eustace – who carried out the repairs and fixed the problem.

· To KEVIN KEENAN – who generously provided all the materials required.

· To GARY & TOMMY DEEGAN who waded in to drain and clean the system, so that the repair work could begin.

In addition – Martin deserves our appreciation, gratitude, and praise for the tremendous work he does around the village, purely out of the goodness of his heart. Thanks to him for - amongst many other things - the planting and placing of the many hanging baskets, window boxes, the boat by the bridge, and flowerbeds, which so enhance the beauty of the village.

Eric Firth – Secretary, Ballymore Eustace Tidy Towns.

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