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Carrigaline Centenary Garden Opens

Carrigaline Centenary Garden Opens
Writes Barry Cogan

The official opening and blessing of the Carrigaline 1916 Centenary Garden at Millwood, Cork Road was a clolourful and memorable event.  Tidy Towns Chairman Liam O’Connor welcomed the distinguished guests and the large gathering. He outlined the part Tidy Towns played in organizing the project, the help received from Cork County Council, Carrigaline Community Association, Stephen McCarthy Astra Construction, Martin O’Callaghan Engineering and Barry Collins SuperValu for their financial assistance.  He complimented John Cummins of Stonewall Garden Centre for his help in designing and execution of the project.  He complimented Jim Ó Siocháin (O’Siochain Construction) for completing the garden to such a high standard.  He also praised Wilkins Stonework and Eamonn Casey Memorials for their workmanship.  He also paid tribute to Pat O’Sullivan, Cork County Council, Richard Yeates (Gateway) and Paul Drievers (Stonewall).  Mayor of Cork County Cllr Séamus McGrath said it was a great honour as a resident to be asked to officially open the beautiful Centenary Garden to honour all who took part in the Easter Rising especially the seven signatories. He said it was the policy of Cork County Council to support Tidy Towns activities and was pleased the Council has made a grant of €14,000 towards the project.  He said the Council was putting in a special effort to regenerate towns and villages throughout the County.  Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, Simon Coveney TD, praised the efforts of the Carrigaline Tidy Towns committee and congratulated them on their achievement especially the Centenary Garden.  He also complimented Cork County Council on their commitment to improving the amenities for local communities. Following the official opening, the new garden was blessed by Rev Fr Pat Fogarty PP and Rev Elaine Murray Rector Church of Ireland. The Proclamation was read by Tidy Towns Hon Secretary, Geraldine O’Hara. Betty O’Riordan raised the Tricolour and the Pipe Band played the National Anthem. Carrigaline native Barry Cogan spoke briefly about the history of the immediate area now called Millwood where John Cogan operated a Mill that provided a service for farmers over a wide area.  It was nice to see his daughter Rose Coveney, her husband Maurice and their son Maurice at the event.  Local poet Kevin Meaney recited a poem that he especially composed last week to mark the occasion. In attendance were: - Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces Vice Admiral Mark Mellet, Deputy Michael Mc Grath, Clodagh Henehan Divisional Manager Cork County Council, Conor Neligan, Heritage Officer Cork County Council, Michael Wall Chairman Community Association, Roy Jolly President Carrigaline Lions Club, Matt Long and Derek Dawson ONE. All present were invited back to the Lions Youth Centre for refreshments where Maura Allen Vice Chairperson Tidy Towns cut the specially designed 1916 cake presented by Hassetts Bakery. The Garden is comprised of a lawn in the shape of Ireland surrounded by a walkway, a seating area and a flag pole for our national flag. Seven Trees have been planted one for each of the seven signatories of the proclamation Thomas J. Clarke, Seán Mac Diarmada, Thomas MacDonagh, P. H. Pearse, Éamonn Ceannt, James Connolly and Joseph Plunkett. The occasion was another memorable milestone in the development of Carrigaline.


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