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Basket case – Gardening section won’t hang baskets in Clarecastle

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*Photograph: Graham Horn

“A shortage of space” is preventing Ennis’ gardening section from hanging baskets along the main thoroughfare of Clarecastle.

Clare County Council’s gardening section was requested by Cllr Paul Murphy (FG) at the December meeting of the Ennis Municipal District to “extend its support to Clarecastle Tidy Towns by filling the hanging street baskets up through the main thoroughfare”.

Waste enforcement officer, Patrick Mullane outlined that the gardening team had already commenced work on preparing hanging baskets for the 2020 summer season. “These baskets are overwintered in polytunnels to ensure that flowers are well established when they are installed in public locations next spring. There is currently a shortage of space within the polytunnels for overwintering that means the gardening section cannot prepare any additional baskets for Clarecastle Tidy Towns”.

Mullane added, “While the gardening section is unable to provide assistance to this particular request, hopefully the team will be able to provide support on other initiatives in the future”.

A “disappointed” Murphy felt the “powerful work” done by the Tidy Towns group needed to be acknowledged. “Our Tidy Towns do their best but often say in admiration how do they get the flowers looking so well in Ennis. We’re trying to spread the love down our way. Maybe it might be considered that the gardening section help to do our flowers in Clarecastle”.

“Every town and village around the country would love to have the standard Ennis has, we’d love to see them coming out to every road,” Cllr Ann Norton (IND) commented as she seconded the proposal with Cllr Mark Nestor (FF) adding further support. Mayor of Ennis, Cllr Johnny Flynn (FG) maintained it was the 1980s when the gardening section first got involved with “public spaces that were in poor disrepair”.

As he admired recent improvement works carried out in Clarecastle village, Cllr Pat Daly (FF) observed “The main street is looking lovely”. He continued, “Surely to God the gardening section could go down and put some baskets on the street”.

Páraic McMahon is Head of News & Sport with The Clare Echo. The Newmarket-on-Fergus native also writes for national papers including The Irish Examiner, The Irish Independent and The Irish Times along with doing work for RTÉ, Today FM, and A graduate of Mary Immaculate College, Páraic was previously employed by The Clare Herald and Clare FM. If you have a story, tip or some feedback for him then send an email to -

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