First sod turned for new Willow Park parkland project

A green area located behind Willow Park estate is to be transformed into a parkland consisting of walkways and a play area for children.

The new facility was officially launched by Mayor Tom Farrell last Friday, April 8, by way of a sod-turning ceremony attended by several local councillors and TDs including Deputies Robert Troy (FF ) and Peter Burke (FG ).

The project, which is set to cost in the region of €20,000, is to be completed in the course of the next few years. Speaking at the launch, Mayor Tom Farrell said: “As Mayor of Athlone Municipal District, I was very proud to be present when Willow Park/Meadowbrook won second place at the all-Ireland Pride of Place competition last November.

“The award was well deserved as the people of Willow Park had come together to tackle problems of dereliction, dumping, lack of facilities, and anti-social behaviour and have created a transformed estate with a great community spirit. Together with Westmeath County Council a development plan was drawn up in 2009 and this has been implemented in stages over the years through many improvements and interventions including the community house and the playground.

“This ceremony today is the start of the next phase of improvement works and will see a field that was once in a derelict condition turned into an attractive parkland area in to include walkways and play facilities. The realisation of this parkland will require further funding but this start is made possible by support from Irish Public Bodies and Westmeath County Council.

“The engagement and involvement of the community makes Willow Park/Meadowbrook a great example to other communities and, in particular, I want to congratulate your committee and your chairman Padraig Higgins for their efforts. As Mayor, I am delighted that the council has been able to support your efforts over the years and I can assure you of our continued support and best wishes.”

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