Rural Affairs Minister Edwin Poots MLA has visited Waringstown to see the completion of a £220,599.20 public realm improvement scheme.
Funding was secured from the Village Renewal Scheme of the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) Rural Development Programme 2014-2020 and delivered by Southern Organisation for Action in Rural Areas (SOAR) Local Action Group. The village renewal measure aims to support the drafting and update of integrated village plans and the capital investment to implement actions identified in village plans.
The public realm improvement scheme included works at the Mill Hill/Banbridge Road junction, new pathways using paving and kerbing in the form of natural stone products, provision and installation of street furniture, tree planting, along with new street lighting. These works have made the village more attractive for potential services and businesses and improved the quality of community space.
Welcoming the completion of the Waringstown Village Renewal Project, the Minister said: “I am delighted that my Department was able to provide grant funding of over £222,000 through the Village Renewal strand of the Rural Development Programme. This project has greatly improved the infrastructure of the village through a range of works, benefiting all those living in these rural areas.
“The improvements made are a great example of the collaborative working between my Department and the Local Action Group, and I am delighted that despite the many challenges brought about by the Covid-19 crisis, these projects, like many others throughout the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council area, have been successfully completed. I want to thank all involved for their hard work and dedication in bringing these to fruition.”
Chairperson of SOAR, Cllr Kyle Savage commented: “For many years the village of Waringstown has been in need of public realm improvements. With this investment, through SOAR’s village renewal Tier 2 scheme, Waringstown’s potential has been realised and these completed works will reinvigorate the area for residents and visitors alike and help to renew civic pride and attract future investment.”
Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, Councillor Paul Greenfield said: “It is brilliant to see revitalisation plans for Waringstown become a reality thanks in part to the support and guidance from the borough’s local action group SOAR ABC.
“Successfully addressing the community’s need for improved pathways and street lighting, this project has not only delivered a space that local residents can take pride in but also one that is better placed to attract visitors and investment, helping support sustainable economic development in the local area.”
Notes to editors:
- A comprehensive consultation process with the public in Waringstown highlighted a need for improvements in the area. The community specifically wanted to see improvements made to footpaths and improved lighting along with a number of other public realm improvements. The Waringstown, Bleary and Gibsons Hill Village Plan also highlighted issues such as poor lighting and quality of footpaths and identified them as key areas for improvement.
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