Clonmel Borough Council has rejected a claim that it has neglected the upkeep of areas of the town that weren’t included on the Entente Florale route.
Residents of Heywood Close have complained that the area has been forgotten and that the grass in the estate’s public space had only been cut once this year while rubbish including dirty needles, discarded shopping trolleys, empty beer cans and wine bottles and broken glass had accumulated there.
One resident, Thomas Lawlor said “the floral competition (Entente Florale) took over completely. The Borough Council did everything wherever the judges went but everywhere else was neglected and it’s wrong. We’ve been ignored despite repeated requests for the area to be tidied”.
However Town Clerk Ger Walsh said it wasn’t true to say that other areas had been neglected in favour of those inspected by the Entente Florale judges during their visit to the town earlier this month.
He accepted that priority was given to the Entente Florale route but said that wet weather also affected the normal schedule of grass cutting.
Mr. Walsh said that priority would now be given to Heywood Close once outdoor staff returned from their annual leave and he hoped that the work could be done within the next week.
The Borough Council was very anxious to assist the residents and Tess Collins, the Council’s Tenant Liaison Officer was in contact with the residents association.
Thomas Lawlor said the residents had promised to look after the area and report anyone who dumped rubbish if the estate was cleaned up but the Council wouldn’t play ball with them. The residents were doing their best to keep the place clean but the Council had only cut the grass once this year, in the second week of June.
He said he was talking to two of his neighbours one evening recently when a nest of rats came out of the high grass. As well as the rubbish that’s regularly dumped there he said that ponies were being driven in from outside and were soiling the area.
There was also a problem with people from outside Heywood Close drinking in the laneway, and anti-social behaviour, and most of the residents felt the laneway should be closed.
“It’s getting out of hand, you’d be embarrassed if someone came to visit. We’re being fobbed off the whole time”.
Mr. Lawlor said the residents were even prepared to cut the grass themselves but had been told they would have to go door-to-door to collect the money to buy the equipment to do that.
Most of the residents were either job-seekers or retired, he said. He hoped that no one living there had paid the Household Charge because they weren’t getting value for money.
“It’s a good area overall, with the best of neighbours and it deserves a hell of a lot better. With a small bit of effort it could be brilliant and it would make a huge difference. We’re not blaming the Borough Council staff, they can only do what they’re told”.
Town Clerk Ger Walsh also said that the Borough Council was hoping to instal two additional cctv cameras in Heywood Close/Cooleens Close that would link into the Garda system and hopefully help combat anti-social behaviour.