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Pride of Place judging for three Offaly groups

Story by Olga Aughey

Thursday, 15th June, 2017 4:25pm

Pride of Place judging for three Offaly groups

Judging for Pride of Place is under way this month and Edenderry Acorn Project, Birr Creative Place and joint entry Lanello and Tullamore Housing Assoction are all hoping to do well in their respective categories that include, community, youth and housing estates.

That's according to Catriona Hilliard who made a presentation on the Pride of Place competition at Council chambers on Wednesday last where she extolled the benefits of the competition that included improving the quality of life for those who live there.

Last year, three entries from Offaly included Ballycommon, Kilcormac and Ferbane Food Camps, with the latter winning the overall national award, and Ms Hilliard paid tribute to the lead organisations involved in the competition that include community groups and the voluntary sector, the HSE, Offaly County Council, and An Garda Siochana.

The preparation process for Pride of Place involves meeting with each of the groups, deciding on the resources they need, hosting a presentation and a mock walkthrough with all of the people involved ahead of the juding.

Cathaoirleach of Tullamore Municipal District, Cllr Sinead Dooley, paid tribute to what she termed a "wonderful competition", and said none of it would be possible without all the stakeholders involved.

Wishing all of the entrants the very best of luck was Cllr Frank Moran who said having been part of the Clara entrant in previous years, it could be seen first-hand the community spirit such a competition created in the community.

Cllr Tommy McKeigue who is part of the Lanello Tullamore Housing Association's entry said he was delighted to be involved in this year's competition and was looking forward to the judges visit.

"The fact that there is housing for the elderly makes it a very good community. We gave six houses over to Simon (Community), which we got a bit of stick for in the beginning, but now everyone has bought into it. We try to be as inclusive as we can and we're lucky to have John Burke as caretaker and the two communities work together," commented Cllr McKeigue, who added that it was a sign of the times that families are having to stay much lognger than the six months, now turning into three to four years in some cases.

Cllrs Dervill Dolan and Danny Owens joined in wishing all three entrants the very best of luck.

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