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Submission to Cappoquin Community Development Company's 2015 Plan

BY CAPPOQUIN CIVIC LINK AND CIVIC LINK HERITAGE GROUPS

 

SETTLEMENT STRATEGY AND POPULATION

 

We propose that it is necessary to place an emphasis on the existing stock of houses within Cappoquin, and that these are used as a priority and new housing estates/developments not be encouraged.

 

We propose one story housing close to the centre of town to facilitate elderly people and a proactive approach in identifying derelict houses and disused houses for renovation and use.

 

We propose that new housing developments be completed and that with the Tidy Towns and Cappoquin Civic Link, some assistance be given to elderly people who are no longer able to maintain the front of their houses.

 

We propose the restoration of the slipway at the Harbour at Twig Bog, for public use.

 

We propose that all foot paths in the town be fully accessible to all users.

 

We propose the reintroduction of the refurbishment grants for those who inherit houses needing refurbishment, etc and especially the elderly who can’t afford to maintain homes and that the council is approached to part fund this through an increased levy on non-compliant owners of derelict buildings.

 

EMPLOYMENT AND ECONOMY

 

We propose “Service Equalisation” in that account be taken of the depletion of Council services in Cappoquin over recent years and seek to ensure that remaining services be reinforced and preserved. This is particularly relevant to Cappoquin Playground, which the Council are responsible for maintaining.

 

We propose “Social Equalisation” in that in circumstances where non-Council agencies have removed services from an area, the County Council will be approached to be proactive in seeking to ensure that its own services will be retained in the same place. For example, if a bank branch, post office or school closes in an area, the Council will endeavour, all other things being equal, to ensure that its offices, library, etc. will be retained in the same place.

 

We propose “Funding Equalisation” in that a balance is maintained between the development funding available to towns and villages under Council and non-Council schemes. For example, that the decorative lighting be extended to all the streets, considered the main streets of Cappoquin. .

 

 

INFRASTRUCTURE

 

We propose that the burying of ESB and Eircom lines be completed while the work/construction of the sewerage scheme in Cappoquin is being carried out and that as part of any major works in any situation that the Council co-operate and synchronise its works with other Service Providers.

 

TRANSPORT

 

We propose that a bicycle shed/parking area be provided in Cappoquin and that cycle lanes, on the roads leading to and from the school, be provided.

 

We propose that a bicycle shed/parking area and bicycle lane should be created from Cappoquin to Melleray, with the bicycle lane and shed to be a pilot scheme in Cappoquin. 

 

We emphasise that residents of Cappoquin’s main streets be guaranteed free parking outside their homes and that very careful consultation MUST be made with all residents and business owners regarding parking and traffic management issues.

 

SOCIAL, COMMUNITY AND CULTURAL

 

We propose the promotion of community buildings as multi-use facilities and that those community halls that have been publicly funded should have greater accessibility to the public, that is, public toilets and a tourist office. We suggest an audit be carried out on all halls in Cappoquin to ascertain the full potential for their use.

 

We emphasise the importance of the branch library and stress the importance of its maintenance and extension of its opening hours.

 

We stress that it is essential that the Council is made give a firm commitment that in areas where it has assisted in the development of a playground area, the ongoing maintenance and insurance of these facilities will fall within the Council’s remit.

 

ENVIRONMENT

 

We propose the upgrading of bottle bank recycling facilities and specifically the reintroduction of Can Banks.

 

We stress the importance and urgency of the health and odour issue concerning Cappoquin’s sewerage, especially of concern for residents living in the town and particularly on Barrack Street. This urgency for this matter to be properly dealt with can not be overstated.

 

HERITAGE AND CONSERVATION

 

A proper restoration of the Daly Cottage near the Boathouse, to include trimming of hedges, painting of the building and general maintenance work, as this is a historic building and a focal point at the town’s entrance. The same should be done with the ruined building at the other end of the town, formerly known as Harrington’s Hotel.

 

We propose that a designated Green Area of a certain size within the limits of a town be maintained and remain a green area, purely for recreational purposes without risk of development. The ideal location for this is the current park area in Twigbog, and we would support the plans to erect a commemorative mill wheel there as a symbol of our industrial heritage. The erection of a band stand, of proper seating and other decorative features could really enhance this area. (Continued Here)

 

HERITAGE AND CONSERVATION

(Continued)

 

We believe the sewage treatment plans suggest that a pump house will be located near the river bend. We propose that this be built in a heritage-related design, perhaps to resemble a small mill with a water wheel, to symbolise our industrial heritage now over 400 years old.

 

We specifically propose that in seeking to prevent corridor tourism through Waterford, the County Council will not instead promote simplistic “hot spot” tourism, where small numbers of places or attractions are given intensive promotion to the detriment of other places which are not similarly promoted. Within Cappoquin, some finger post style signs, highlighting where the churches, Cornerstone, etc are would be very important.

 

The town needs a heritage centre, preferably as a stand alone building and centre, at least for summer months. This might include the use of a branch library or other Council property, with broader opening hours, for such purposes, ideally in cooperation with local heritage or tourism groups. The heritage group has been actively pursuing this project and we have the material to stock same also.

 

The town needs street name plaques, proper entrance signage. Ideally, these could also be done with a heritage perspective in mind.

 

Cappoquin needs directional signage to it from other towns.

 

We specifically propose that the walk from the Cappoquin soccer pitches (Dane’s field) to Barrack Street should be mapped out and the area, known locally as “The Bank” be developed as a green area, ideally as a linear park within Cappoquin. This could be done on a very low budget. The works planned for the sewerage pipes could be an opportunity to develop this area in the process.

 

We believe strongly that the Red Bridge must be included as a central part of the plan. It should be restored, made into a walkway and painted red as it always was.

 

Our bridges at the river bend should be uplit with proper floodlighting. Buildings of historical importance in the town should be similarly lit, by energy-efficient means if at all possible.

 

The walkway in front of new houses at the river bend should be completed so that people can walk from the park in Twigbog to the Boathouse, as was originally promised. This walkway should also continue on along the top of the bank or through the twig bog itself to the east end of the Red Bridge, connecting in a looped walkway around the river bend.

 

The area across from the Boathouse, known locally as the Inch, should be developed as a nature reserve, perhaps with a simple walkway through it so that visitors can enjoy the area without interrupting the wildlife, etc.

 

We propose that the well at the Square, which must date from the middle ages when that area was the town market place, should be restored as a feature in its own right. This would cost very little as it is in very good condition under the cobblestones and a metal sheet laid down there when it was discovered in the recent past.

 

We also propose that the old small harbour area at the river bend, where local boat owners used to tie up, should be restored as a harbour amenity for locals and also for tourists, anglers, etc.

 

The Glenshelane walkway should be upgraded and properly signposted. In addition, the possibility of extending it downriver to connect with the Red Bridge should be explored, in consultation with the landowner(s). This could be a major tourist amenity.

 

Finally, we would hope that the proper cobbling of footpaths which have not yet been done should be completed, mindful of the fact that people’s rights to have safe footpaths and also space to park cars should be upheld.

 

TOURISM

 

We propose the development of the River Blackwater as a tourist attraction, including the regeneration and upkeep of bridges, slipways/quays and signage along the river, particularly the tidal reaches.

 

We propose the active support of local initiatives to develop river amenities, such as the Red Bridge Walkway at Cappoquin, mooring facilities at Cappoquin and the promotion and encouragement of local traditions relating to the river, such as fishing and the 150 year old rowing tradition in Cappoquin.

 

We propose the development of Holiday/Tourist Facilities in suitable areas and the renovation of existing derelict recreational facilities, such as the derelict chalet park at Glenshelane, Cappoquin.

 

We propose that for tourist, economic, environmental and social benefit of the people that the 2015 Plan is proactive in helping to restore as a walking and cycling path, the railway line running through the county from Tallow Road to Waterford City, including the Red Bridge at Cappoquin. The Plan should stress the need to develop existing walking trails into a network of signposted and looped walks or cycle tracks, with appropriate parking, seating facilities and raised walkways over marsh areas, etc.

 

We emphasise that signage of any description in Cappoquin is virtually non-existent. One of our committee members had bereavement this week. Many relatives travelled from various parts of Cork County and all commented that it was impossible to find Cappoquin because it was no properly sign-posted. The Council needs to get going on this very important infrastructure for tourism.

 

We propose a tourist office for Cappoquin. Cappoquin Civic Link can source a premises and staffing for a very low retainer. This could be done for the tourist season this year, once Cappoquin Civic Link gets the “okay” from Failte Ireland.

 

As committees, Civic Link and Civic Link Heritage Group insist that a representative for every club/group in Cappoquin be invited to a meeting allowing for a democratically elected workable body to be elected to finalise the draft plan and oversee its implementation.

 

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