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Dublin Bike Scheme

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I live in a small farming town called called Ballyboughal. There’s no bus service here and very little else 😉

Last week I had a meeting in Dublin City Centre. So I got a lift into Dublin City.

What happens when at about 5pm, peak traffic one hits near Sherriff Street and tries to get to Merrion Square is very little by way of movement. In fact one could nearly pull the hand brake and set up the picnic table. However if I back tracked about 2 miles I could get on a bike, for free, cycle to Merrion Square, park the bike and that’s that.

The cost for this Dublin Bike Scheme is a registration fee of €10 per annum. And assuming none of my journeys are over 30 minutes then that’s all it will cost me for the year. Realistically, unless I’m going on a back packing journey around Dublin… I can’t see any ride lasting longer than that.

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When I went to St Patricks Park last week [I had a meeting near there just before] my next meet was on Baggot Street…. I walked it. Not a problem, but the cycle would have made things, well, more efficient time wise I suppose.

There used to be a handy iphone app for all of the locations… which made it really easy to figure where was best [for you] to drop your bike back – but JC Decaux who did a deal with Dublin City Council in exchange for advertising space put a stop to that.

Anyhow, it is a great idea. It does work. And for ten bob…. one can’t really complain. Go to the Dublin Bike Scheme website, have your credit card handy and give it a whirl. It takes about 2 weeks to get your card through the post.

UPDATE:

Anthony tells me there is an iphone app from JCDecaux called ABikeNow – but – it’s really poor being very honest and terribly hard to navigate. My advice…. print out a locations map and put it in your handbag 🙂

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coultry park, dublin

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I wouldn’t guess too many know about this park. In fact I’d say very few. I never knew about it up until recently. But I’m glad I did take the time to visit it.

Located in between the new and old Ballymun…. the stark contrast is to be admired. In fact it is to be applauded. Because what I saw was the fact that for the first time in my life a park was built before a building development was finished. The park still has a bit, on the peripherals to go, but its really good. I like it!

What was much more admirable was the little plaques at the base of so many trees. They acknowledged a group or an organisation who donated money and paid for that tree to go into the park.

This is important. Because now a new park is about the people. It tells a story. It has a reason and a meaning, personal to those who will frequent it.

Ballymun regeneration, the people who live there and Dublin City Council for so many reasons will have got this park spot on when it’s fully complete in so many ways.

I’m gonna give this park 3/5 – only because it’s got a bit of finshing to go. That said I would strongly recommend you go here. Visit it. Take your time. Sit on a grass mound and let life pass you by.

What I found most unusual about this place when I went there…. There was about 12 teenagers sitting around talking and 3 kids with their parents in the playground. Not an inch of litter to be seen. Some people associate parks with an older age group… Nice to see re-generation getting a double meaning. 😉

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a recycled show garden…

Remember this post about the smithfield festival….?

Here’s what they said:
In association with the [myplant.ie] rediscovery centre ballymun and waste management, dublin city council, award winning landscape designer peter donegan returns to smithfield aiming to create a small urban garden of sorts filled with nothing but what could have been thrown out and free to take including washing machines, cookers, satellite dishes and basically anything else he can lay his hands on! from landfills and repairs to greens and growing and from throw away useless to a simple bit of that’ll do just fine.

Here’s what happens in one day. In Dublin City Centre. When one has one day to put a show garden together…..

The beauty about this garden is that the plants will be split 3 ways and donated to 2 local community garden groups in smithfield and also in ballymun. Thanks once again to Pat Fitzgerald, all of the other electrical goods will return and again be recycled and the recycled furniture will return to Ballymun to be sold

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quinncentennial park, galway

quinncentennial park galway

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Did you ever want to give a County Council, in this case a parks department, whose wages I and you pay – a good kick up the bottom ?

Two parks in two days in Galway is what I set out to do. That’s what I did.

The other was Claude Toft Park. It shouldn’t really matter what two parks I chose to visit – in my honest opinion this parks department needs a radical reality check. If I maintained that park? It wouldn’t be in that state. Or…… I could be out of a job. The options ‘they’ should be given.

Before ‘anyone’ suggests the economic-hulabuloo ? The evidence, horticulturally, is that this neglect has been evident and growing worse for a long [in years] time. Secondly, I personally go to a park so I don’t have to hear about that sort of stuff.

I paid hard earned money to travel to Galway. I spent money when in Galway. If I was a tourist travelling from abroad – I would not return. And with tourism already down 20% – I am beginning to understand why that might be.

To the park – Whilst the outlay remembles a little bit more of what I would consider ‘a park’, once again – zero available information on the internet regarding this place also.

I wasn’t impressed. At first, my mood lightened when I saw a rock noting that it was ‘developed for the benefit of Galways senior citizens by Digital Equipment International B.V. 1984’. I then looked around. Not impressed. My spirits were lifted again when I came across the central water feature and a Mom with kids and dog playing there [the only people apart from me]. I saw a wee bridge. I then saw the now defunct water feature…What?!! Back to brutal.

I’m guessing in 1984 this park was an absolute stunner and the gesture by the company [I assume], in a 1984 Ireland, Saint-like. As an overview the layout is good and the road less travelled pathways and secluded seating places make it a nice place to spend time, possibly, I’m sure. But as of now the park needs attention. Urgently.

Once again – my second park in two days. And of all of the parks I have ever visited. These have to be two of the worst. These are peoples parks. NOT The County Councils.

Shame on you Galway City Coucil Parks Department. The same Galway City Council that wish to plough a road through Terrylands Peoples Forest?  And by the way, it’s the peoples forest.

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