Tidy Towns Competition 2014

Tidy Towns Competition 2014
Adjudication Report

Centre: Bruff     County: Limerick     Category: B

Community Involvement & Planning



Built Environment and Streetscape

50 33
Landscaping and Open Spaces 50 40
Wildlife, Habitats and Natural Amenities 50 33
Sustainable Waste and Resource Management 50 16
Tidiness and Litter Control 90 55
Residential Streets & Housing Areas 50 29
Approach Roads, Streets & Lanes 50 30
TOTAL MARK 450 280


Community Involvement & Planning / Rannpháirtíocht an Phobail & Pleanáil:
Thank you for your entry to the 2014 competition.  You are a hard-working and dedicated community with a lot to say and have included a substantial amount of information and achievements through the year.   The visit of Caroline Kennedy was a great gathering achievement.  Your adjudicator followed the Fitzgerald trail right out from site number 1 – well done on this great achievement. 
Your adjudicator particular liked your 2014 Calendar and hoped you raised ample funds for the 2014 work. There is a real energy in this application, which is reflected on the ground so well done to all the volunteers and different groups and bodies throughout Bruff with whom you have worked.  Be careful not to submit too much information as the core achievements could then be accidently overlooked. 
Congratulation in your achievements within Ballyhoura Development TidyTowns awards and it was great to read of your encouragement to all members of the community in the Church Newsletters.
Built Environment and Streetscape / An Timpeallacht Thógtha agus Sráid-dreacha:
The different premises all along Main Street were attractive.  There appeared to be many newly painted premises along this street and they should be commended for their efforts.  For example, the Bank of Ireland looked very fresh with intricate paint work highlight the heritage features of this building.  ‘Raspberry Red’ was also very nicely presented. The Bank Buildings hotel was presented in a fashionable heritage colour, though the heritage gas lights at the front of the building are not traditional to the locality.  It was a great to see the home-cured bacon in the window of the butchers.  The wall here was being prepared for the erection of a new sign which should enhance this corner.
The double sided murals at Clancy’s pub include a fitting tribute to a local sportsman and they look very well indeed. Travelling south along Main Street there was then a lovely surprise to view the wonderful Tyrone man Hugh O’Neill depicted on the fantastic mural of the Flight of the Earls. 
Your recent work on the Sean Wall monument is to be commended and deviating from the ubiquitous white was a bold decision that has paid off.  You have picked on one of the key focal points in the community and through its painting have highlighted this corner at the top of the town.  Opposite the Church looked well and the stone inscribed AD789 was noted integrated in the boundary walls.
The Community Café was nicely painted in muted colours and offers a nice oasis for the locals to grab a scone.      Nearby the old court house was striking in its new colour. 

The new Garda station is nicely camouflaged with the trees on the approach. 
The GAA have cleverly used climbing plants to great effect along their boundary wall.  If they were able to repair the leaking guttering this would reduce the dirty splash marks seen at certain points along their main building. 
Nice window displays lifted many of the buildings including School House Flowers and Paddy’s sweet shop at the lower end of the Main Street.
Landscaping and Open Spaces / Tírdhreachú agus Spásanna Oscailte:
The newly planted beds were noted.  Your adjudicator liked the great use of trees throughout the town of Bruff. 
Best of luck with your endeavors to restore the Old Cork Road as this will be an attractive local amenity that should encourage new tourists and visitors to the locality.   This may be a scheme suitable for a funding application to the new round of LEADER applications once they re-open in early 2015.
Wildlife, Habitats and Natural Amenities / Fiadhúlra, Gnáthóga agus Taitneamhachtaí Nádúrtha:
The recommendations in the Biodiversity Plan are noteworthy in particular your aims to promote and enhance local wildlife through cost-effective and achievable actions. 
Your plan for 2013-2014 included completing a habitat survey which is important to establish a baseline of information.   You also proposed to eliminate the invasive species identified by the river which should also be commended.  For example, you detail the development of a buffer strip along the Morning Star river banks.  The plan details the importance of native tree species to insects – have you surveyed them or got children involved? By simply placing a white sheet under a tree and gentle shaking the tree you can see the numerous insects that depend on each tree. 
Suckers growing from the base of many trees should be cut to focus growth on the main body of the tree.
Sustainable Waste and Resource Management / Bainistiú Acmhainní agus Dramhaíola Inbhuanaithe:
Scoil Dean Cussen was noted working hard towards their 4th Green Flag award the theme of which is of relevance to this category of the competition.  There are many examples of actions undertaken that have helped you gain marks in this category of the competition.  For example, it was great to note that you have used your own compost in your landscaping.  You have also registered with www.greenhome.ie and are adopting changes with regard to water usage.
Tidiness and Litter Control / Slachtmhaireacht agus Rialú Bruscair:
On Adjudication day your litter picker was out working hard and he should be commended for his efforts on a wet, cool day. 
Well done on asking local candidates to keep their election posters outside the centre of the village.  All were removed by adjudication day but watch out for cable ties left behind on many of the approach roads.  Be careful in the use of flags on premises as many were torn and looked untidy. 
Street furniture looked well in most places including sewer vents.  However, many of the vents were only painted to human height level.  Perhaps a cherry picker could be used in future years and this action could then be added to your long-term plan? 
Your adjudicator was sorry to read of the ill health of the owner of Glynn’s pub.  At the side entry some dumped tarmac should be removed.  By simply storing the kegs in situ here neatly, the entry will appear much tidier. 
The road signs from the Main Street to Hospital road were cluttered bent in places and one sign needed cleaning.   Nearby a redundant post in front of O’Donoghue’s foodstore could be removed. 
The surrounds of the bottle banks were clean.  It may be beneficial to sweep under the banks when they are in the process of being emptied to remove an old litter caught under here.   Nearby the ‘No Overnight parking’ sign from Limerick County Council should be removed.
Residential Streets & Housing Areas / Sráideanna Cónaithe & Ceantair Tithíochta:
The committee has worked tirelessly identifying owners of derelict properties and locating keys to closed premises.   As a result the old Garda station appeared very striking and just some work is needed to remove vegetation from the gutters here. 

Sycamore Drive had a nice name plate and flowers planted underneath this.  The football club nestled at the back here was a nice surprise!  Brugh na nDeise was very neat and tidy though the approach road was somewhat stark.  There was a sign missing from a post on this road.  Trees in this area should have their stays removed as they are beginning to damage the growing trunk of the trees.
Approach Roads, Streets & Lanes / Bóithre Isteach, Sráideanna & Lánaí:
Driving in on many approach roads there are many mature, and maturing trees through the town of Bruff that add much to the character of your community. 
As you enter Crawford Street, rear areas behind premises on the Main Street were inspected as they were mentioned in previous reports.  This area looked very well and congratulations to all who worked hard to tidy up these areas. 
You adjudicator liked the way in which the pavement was preserved to the entrance gate of the Church giving pedestrians priority over car parking.  The Convent building looked very well and a little attention is needed to preserve the wrought iron entrance gates here. 
The canopy of Centra should be painted and would enhance this approach into Bruff.