On 15 July the Judges Visited Ashford Community Park Co. Wicklow
They were immediately impressed at how clean the park was, but when they learnt that local residents had grouped together the day before to make the park as presentable as possible they were blown away. They heard about the appeal that had gone out on Facebook and the large crowd that showed up to help remove any weeds or litter that could be lying about. Already it was clear that the park held a special place in the people of Ashford’s hearts.
Ashford Community Park was established to be a safe place for the people of Ashford to enjoy. The one acre park was developed with the kind permission of the Stokes family last year, and has become a fantastic feature of the area.
The park aims to be devoid of any anti-social behaviour and an example of a safer environment for families to enjoy. It also serves as a hub for many community events like mini marathons and school sports days.
The judges also learnt about the educational images the Park had begun posting on their Facebook page. These images focus on the different species of animals and types of trees that can be found in the park. The community really enjoyed these images as it helps them to understand why it is so important to conserve and protect this land.
The Judges got a tour of the park where they were shown the work that had been done by volunteers gardening and planting trees and plants. They could also see how much time volunteers put into keeping the park free of weeds.
The judges heard how the park also got great support from local businesses, such as Cafe Latte – a local coffee shop which helped to raise money for the opening of the park with an Easter raffle.
Finally the judges heard from some of the people who have benefited from the park, including local school teacher Ashford Montessori:
We had a day out from our school to the park with all our pupils and parents. The park is a great amenity to have on our doorstep.
It was clear to the judges that maintaining this park was just as important to local volunteers as enjoying it. The community had really coming together in such a short time to create a fantastic place for families and groups to enjoy.
For more information about Ashford Community Park, visit the group’s Facebook page.