Dalkey Tidy Towns


Adjudication 2003  

Overall Developmental Approach: 2003

  The Committee is thanked for their entry into this year's Tidy Towns Competition. This entry contained a very complete Entry Form, excellent additional information, two photographs, Dalkey Community Council Newsletter, an Historic Review, Heritage Guide No. 16 - Dalkey Island and an excellent Map of the Town. The Committee is to be congratulated on the quality of this entry. There is however one item that should have been sent and that is a three-year Programme of Development. The Adjudicator will look forward, in next year's submission, to this three-year Plan. These documents are of great help to the Adjudicator in seeing the work being done and they should also be of benefit to the Committee in monitoring the yearly programme. The committee's liaison work with the County Council, G.A.A., St. John of God, community groups and the pupils of the school are to be commended. The contributions from some of the communities businesses is proof of the backing provided by the local community. It is most important to continue this liaison work with the various groups mentioned above, as they can give invaluable help and advice to the Committee

The Built Environment: 2003

  Because of the great number of works, either being considered or to be undertaken by the Committee in the Castle Street area, the Adjudicator decided to concentrate the adjudication in this area and to leave out the most charming areas of Dalkey such as Bullock harbour, Colliemore Road and Vico Road, all of which are superb residential and landscaped areas.
  Castle Street is basically a delightful street, with the slight curve on its plan and its buildings mostly two-storey in a variety of styles. It is the commercial street of Dalkey. The laneways off Castle Street should be one of the charms occurring in a quite regular pattern at right angles to the main street. Some areas of the street are just delightful, such as around Goat Castle, the Catholic Church, Kilbegnet Close and Termon housing. However, in general, most of the laneways instead of being paved with interesting paving, lighting and some gateways, are very unkempt with much litter and indeed refuse adjacent to kitchens and other work areas.
Starting at the railway station, the perimeter of the car park is very untidy, with much litter and with no proper enclosure. The perimeter of this car park should be enclosed in trees and shrubs adjacent to nearby housing. The station itself has the example of the delightful Guinea Pig Restaurant, other good commercial buildings and some very fine houses and their gardens in that space fronting onto the station building. Could not the railway authorities and the Borough Council together not contribute to what could be a delightful urban space and one of the main entrances into Dalkey. The Committee should approach both bodies to work in one of the important areas of Dalkey.
   St. Patrick's Square, a winner many times for its delightful and partially hidden square and still looking a gem. However, it is completely undermined by the shabbiness of the approach road to St. Patrick's Square and the car park at the rear of the Super Valu Shopping Centre.
   The entire treatment of the Super Value centre facing onto the car park is very poor, with storage areas for trolleys, card boxes and other materials. Could not these areas be enclosed by sliding doors, and also these doors would stop the trolleys being dragged by vandals all over the car park.
  The Library looks derelict and basically needs painting to windows, fascias and lettering.
   The Social Centre, backing onto the car parks is the most offending, with garbage, litter and waste building materials and even a dismembered refrigerator. This areas should be cleared up by the Social Centre.
   Given all this negative development there is a charming small group of housing off the car park which is most pleasant and is struggling against adjoining litter.
   The Tram Yard is a most interesting small square with a furniture showrooms and other units, which is very untidy and with much litter. There are very fine wrought iron gates in poor condition and long unused which should be rehabilitated and used in front of the existing gate into the Tram Yard. The footpaths on Castle Street need regular hosing to keep them clean. A chewing gum removal machine must be acquired.
   The Queen's Bar and Restaurant is a charming building with a very pleasant external sitting area. The car park behind the hotel is relatively tidy and beside this is a most pleasant group of housing known as White's Villas which is a delightful surprise to come onto. The Adjudicator has seen many instances of wirescape, but has never seen so many wires in such a small area. It is amazing that so few houses could generate so many wires. Possibly the E.S.B. and the Borough Council, in conjunction with the Committee, could tackle this most intrusive wirescape.
   Again, in complete contrast, the very good landscape treatment around Goat Castle, the Catholic Church, Kilbegnet Close and Termon housing, are delightful areas and very well maintained. Similarly the area around Archbolds’s Castle, Dalkey Town Hall and Heritage Centre. The Adjudicator will look with interest on the Committee's approach to the items discussed above.

Landscaping: 2003

  In many ways Castle Street is basically a delight, with its many fine lamp standards and floral hanging baskets, and this gives a great uplift to people coming into this street from Ulverton Road to Railway Street. Both the Committee and the Borough Council are to be congratulated on this lovely display of colour. Similarly St. Patrick's Square, as mentioned under The Built Environment, is a delightful urban landscaped housing square, with its very well grassed centre, its trees, shrubs and hanging baskets. It is a great credit to its residents to continually keep it to a high degree of maintenance. In the areas outside Castle Street there are the very fine grounds of the houses along Coliemore Road and Vico Road. They make Dalkey an outstanding seaside town to live in. The problem for the Committee is to see that Castle Street is developed to a standard comparable to these outstanding landscaped residential areas.

Wildlife and Natural Amenities: 2003

  Killiney Hill is an outstanding area to monitor and an area of wildlife with its many diverse habitats. There is a wealth of plant life there to support both bird and animal life. The Committee should contact ENFO to obtain some of the very fine publications they produce on wildlife conservation. In the meantime the Committee could consider also the design and construction of illustrated boards showing both land and seabirds that exist on the Hill. The Adjudicator will look forward with interest on what has been achieved on this subject in next year's submission.

Litter Control: 2003

  What is basically needed in Dalkey is a Litter Management Strategy, especially for the Castle Street area. There should be more litter bins, of a type that does not impede the narrow footpaths. There should be a number of notice boards on sections of the street showing the statutory by-laws relating to the disposal of packaging waste, litter, dog pollution and the fines applicable to these, and above all, a litter warden to monitor difficult areas

Tidiness: 2003

  There are new buildings being built on Castle Street and this construction work gives a sense of "1 untidiness to the street, but this should be temporary and by next year's submission, the disruption should be completed and the area cleared up. The Committee should see that the contractors leave the footpaths and laneways completely tidy

Residential Areas: 2003

  Beside the large residential grounds there are many single small houses and smaller housing groups, with their gardens, throughout Dalkey. By their care and design the owners of these gardens give a most friendly welcome to people coming into the town. These owners must be congratulated for the care and attention of these very lovely gardens.

Roads, Streets and Back Areas: 2003

  The back areas of Castle Street have been discussed in some detail under The Built Environment.

General Impression: 2003

  Dalkey is a most delightful seaside town and has the potential to be truly exceptional. Dalkey has heritage sites and buildings, outstanding public open space in Dalkey Hill, very beautiful coastal areas and gardens - except on its most important street, Castle Street - which is in some way letting down the quality of its surrounding areas. All that is needed is good housekeeping on the part of some of the commercial areas in Castle Street and its back areas. The Adjudicator is more than confident that these drawbacks can be overcome with the co-operation of the Committee and with sections of the Borough Council and looks forward to a Programme of Works that will overcome these drawbacks on Castle Street.


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