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National Play Day 2024

Waterford Sports Partnership were delighted to partner and support Waterford City & County Council with National Play Day 2024.

Through this initiative, the DCEDIY supports Local Authorities in promoting play and recreation opportunities for children with limited opportunities. The theme for National Play Day 2024 is ‘Time to Play!’, with the aim of promoting play to enhance children’s development.

Organisations that engaged with National Play Day 2024 were:

  • Carriglea Cáirde Services – who received Sensory Packs containing sensory balls/koosh balls, balloons, bean bags, ribbon streamers, large tube bubbles and wands, frisbee, squeezy balls, and coloured sensory scarves.
  • St. Brigid’s, Sacred Heart
    and
  • BRILL Family Resource Centre each received €1,000 to purchase equipment such as Balance Bikes, Tractors, Trikes, Basketball Stand, Karaoke Machine, Playful Gardening Tools that will encourage young people to play on a regular basis.

Fantastic to see such creative ideas that encourages young children to be physically active.

From tomorrow – Abbey Road Closure – arrangements

A sewer upgrade for the North Quays Infrastructure works requires a temporary closure of a section of Abbey Road starting on Monday 1st July, until 16th August. Pedestrians and local access will be facilitated during the works, and the traffic diversion route will be signposted.

JJ Kavanaghs will be continuing their local bus service during the works on an altered timetable (see below).

Waterford City and County Council regrets the inconvenience and disruption caused to local residents and commuters while these works progress.

Abbey Road – Temporary Road Closure

Abbey Road Closure – arrangements

A sewer upgrade for the North Quays Infrastructure works requires a temporary closure of a section of Abbey Road starting on Monday 1st July, until 16th August. Pedestrians and local access will be facilitated during the works, and the traffic diversion route will be signposted.

JJ Kavanaghs will be continuing their local bus service during the works on an altered timetable (see below).

Waterford City and County Council regrets the inconvenience and disruption caused to local residents and commuters while these works progress.

Abbey Road – Temporary Road Closure

Calls for Expressions of Interest – Appointment of Chairperson to Local Community Safety Partnership

Waterford City & County Council invites expressions of interest for consideration for appointment as Chairperson of a new Local Community Safety Partnerships which is to be established in each Local Authority area in line with the Policing, Security and Community Safety Act 2024.

Expressions of interest should be submitted by email to recruitment@waterfordcouncil.ie by 4p.m. on Monday, 15th July 2024.

Waterford PPN Celebrates a Decade Long Service to Communities

PPN logoWaterford Public Participation Network is the designated networking and representational body of community groups, organisation & clubs etc. in Waterford City & County.

This year sees PPNs nationally reach ten years in existence and this week we at Waterford PPN honour the decade long service we have provided to communities across Waterford.

Muriel Tobin, Waterford PPN Coordinator, expressed gratitude.

“I am very fortunate to have been with Waterford PPN since its inception and witnessed our community’s remarkable growth, resilience and cohesion in some challenging times. Our partnerships with Waterford City & County Council, Elected Reps, PPN Reps and collaborators has strengthened over the past decade making Waterford a great place to live, work and visit. A heartfelt thanks to our members, passed & present Secretariat members, representatives & staff, Waterford City & County Council and the DRCD for a decade of support”.

With us representing and supporting the voice of over 700 member groups, this at the very least represents 5,000 people engaged in community activity within the Waterford PPN family in our County.

Economically, volunteers contribute greatly to the fabric of Irish society and, at a low valuation of €15 per hour, we can estimate a conservative contribution of these Waterford volunteers among PPN members at €3.9 million per year, if they only volunteer 1 hour per week each, and most do more than this.

PPNs were established under The Local Government Act 2014 and has grown from 11,962 groups to 19,950 in 2023, echoing our growth. This is a monumental representation of community activity in our state and has been led by PPNs in providing empowerment and voice at a local level, providing training, funding information and consultations to the community.

Waterford PPN have over 50 reps sitting on Waterford City & County Council committees and other non-LA Boards representing the community & voluntary voice of Waterford and the community has greatly benefited from the dedication of representatives over the past decade. If you are interested in representing your community on Waterford City & County Council boards/committees then check out the vacancies page on our website and our members newsletters.

Frank Nolan, Waterford PPN Secretariat Committee said,

“During my tenure as a member of the PPN Secretariat, it has been a pleasure serving Community Groups across Waterford. Over the past decade, I’ve seen the tremendous benefits. The PPN is a central community hub, supporting our diverse and vibrant county. Waterford City & County Council has been our main partner, and we look forward to continuing our excellent relationship to provide first-class voluntary service, support, information, and guidance”.

This year we are also celebrating another year of the Community & Voluntary Awards, the only platform in Waterford that recognises and celebrates the commitment and vibrancy of the community and voluntary sector and the value of the voluntary contribution made by community and voluntary groups and volunteers.

Sinéad BreathnachSEO, Community & Sports DepartmentWaterford City & County Council said,

Congratulations to Waterford PPN on a successful and effective 10-year tenure here in Waterford.  The PPN is the main link through which Waterford City & County Council connects with the community, voluntary, environmental, and social inclusion sectors and is a valued key stakeholder and partner in enabling communities to part-take in policy formation and overseeing various Council activities. We are very lucky to have such a great secretariat and administrative team working closely and positively with us over the past 10 years, and we look forward to continuing with this successful collaboration into the future.

Funding: Community groups/organisations/clubs etc MUST be registered with Waterford PPN to be considered for future local and most national grants, where you will get a unique PPN number that will be required as part of applications.  If you haven’t done so already, it is advised that you register as soon as possible. Register online at www.waterfordppn.ie or contact Muriel Tobin or Alison De Paor at waterfordppn@gmail.com , 058 21198/058 21803

“The 10 Year Anniversary of the PPNs will be celebrated Nationally at this year’s National PPN Conference, which will be hosted by Limerick PPN, Limerick City and County Council and supported by the DRCD.

Looking forward, we encourage you and others to join us in continuing the journey to greater inclusion, empowerment, and representation of community interests.

“Together we are stronger”

Phone Line disruption

Phone Lines downPlease be advised that our external phone lines, including 0818 10 20 20, are currently experiencing issues.

We are working to resolve this issue as quickly as possible. In the meantime, please contact us via email at contact@waterfordcouncil.ie or via our social media channels.

Thank you for your understanding.

Phone Line disruption

Phone Lines downUPDATE: 9:44am – Phone lines are back working.

Please be advised that our external phone lines, including 0818 10 20 20, are currently experiencing issues.

We are working to resolve this issue as quickly as possible. In the meantime, please contact us via email at contact@waterfordcouncil.ie or via our social media channels.

Thank you for your understanding.

Anne Valley Walk – temporary closure

Anne Valley walk

Due to essential maintenance works, part of the Anne Valley Walk will be temporarily closed, Monday to Friday until the end of June.

Closure Details:

  • Closed Section: Main car park to Castle car park
  • Open Section: Castle car park to Annestown remains accessible

Closure Period: Monday to Friday until the end of June.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause, and thank you for your understanding.

National Broadband Plan connection now available for Waterford homes near Tallow

National Broadband Ireland logo

  • Over 2,100 Waterford homes, businesses and farms near Tallow can now connect to fibre broadband on National Broadband Ireland network
  • Over half of premises included in National Broadband Plan in Co Waterford can avail of a high-speed connection today

National Broadband Ireland (NBI), the company delivering the new future-proofed, high-speed Fibre-to-the-Home network under the National Broadband Plan on behalf of the Government, has said that over 2,100 Waterford properties in its Tallow deployment area can now avail of a high-speed fibre broadband connection. The area covers the rural surrounds of Tallow, Lismore, Ballyduff and Aglish.

16,000 premises in Co Waterford are included in the State’s Intervention Area, which will see NBI deliver minimum speeds of 500 megabits per second to homes, businesses, farms, and schools. As the biggest investment in rural Ireland since rural electrification, Co Waterford will receive €59m of Government investment under the National Broadband Plan.

There are 2,122 Waterford premises in the Tallow deployment area that can now join the National Broadband Ireland network. National Broadband Ireland is calling on people living nearby to visit nbi.ie/map and enter their Eircode to see if they are ready to connect.

Works have already been completed for over half of the premises included in the National Broadband Plan in Co Waterford as a total of 9,110 premises can now pre-order or order high-speed, reliable broadband. There have been 2,849 connections made so far across the county.

Progress continues across Waterford with network build works now underway throughout the county. Currently, construction is in progress for almost 1,700 Waterford premises in the Ballinamult deployment area, which are anticipated to be connected to the NBI network between January and June 2025. National Broadband Ireland’s website is regularly updated to show estimated connection dates. Signing up to the NBI email notifications at https://nbi.ie/eoi is the easiest way to get the most up-to-date status of premises during the rollout and when premises will be ready for order.

Peter Hendrick, Chief Executive Officer, National Broadband Ireland, saidWe are delighted to announce that over 2,100 Waterford premises near Tallow can now order high-speed broadband services through the National Broadband Ireland network. This will enable those who connect to experience the life-changing benefits of high-speed broadband with minimum speeds of 500 megabits per second.

“We are thrilled to be over the half-way mark as over 9,100 homes, businesses and farms in Co Waterford can now order a high-speed fibre connection to the National Broadband Ireland network. This includes almost 3,900 near Waterford city, over 1,200 premises near Youghal as well as over 2,000 premises along the Waterford-Tipperary county border near Carrick-On-Suir and Clonmel.

“We are working hard on the ground to progress other areas of the county through engineering survey, design and construction phases. We are encouraging Waterford residents to visit the NBI website to check their Eircode and sign up for updates.”

As a wholesale network operator, NBI does not sell fibre broadband directly to end users, rather it enables services from a range of broadband providers or Retail Service Providers (RSPs). As a wholesale provider, NBI will make the new Fibre-to-the-Home network available to all RSPs operating in the Intervention Area.   

Some 72 RSPs have already signed up to sell services on the National Broadband Ireland network and 68 are certified as ready to start providing connections as of today. To see the retail broadband providers that are currently licensed to sell on the National Broadband Ireland network, visit NBI.ie/buy.

National Broadband Ireland contractors have been on the ground across the country and over 274,261 premises nationwide can order or pre-order broadband on the NBI network so far.

The National Broadband Ireland website is regularly updated to show estimated connection dates. Signing up to the NBI email notifications at https://nbi.ie/eoi/ is the easiest way to get the most up to date status of premises during the rollout and when premises will be ready for order.  

Keep up to Speed!  

NBI is encouraging people to check their eligibility and register for updates at www.nbi.ie to receive regular notifications related to their own premises as works progresses in their area.  

Broadband Connection Points

In advance of the Fibre-to-the-Home rollout, the NBP provides for the delivery of Broadband Connection Points (BCPs) nationwide. 955 of these sites, including Public BCPs, are now ‘live’. Public BCPs – which include sports clubs, community centres and tourist sites – will provide free public access to high-speed internet in the rollout area. Other BCP categories include schools and marts.

BCPs will pave the way for rural communities to receive the benefits of broadband, from mobile working, e-learning and mobile banking, to digital tourism. You can view BCPs at www.nbi.ie/bcp-map/. An example of some of the locations of Broadband Connection Points in Waterford include Modeligo Community Hall, Mount Melleray Community Hall and Knockanore Community Centre. Primary schools in the Intervention Area are now connected for educational access as part of the NBP.

(ENDS) 

Waterford City & County Council calls for Property Pledges

Ukrainian Refugee Response TeamWaterford City and County Council is urging people to consider offering a home to those displaced by the war in Ukraine.

For anyone who has a house, apartment, holiday home or even a spare room, the process of Offering a Home has never been easier.

Waterford City and County Council’s Ukrainian Refugee Response Team provides a holistic approach to anyone considering pledging a property and oversees and manages the process from property reviews to relationship management.

A tax-free recognition payment of €800 per month is available to anybody offering accommodation to those fleeing Ukraine.

Noeleen Osborne, Project Co-ordinator says, “It’s natural that some people may have reservations about opening their homes to Ukrainian refugees, and the commitment that it entails.

“Our Ukrainian Refugee Response Team takes on the full process, including everything from matching the right property to the right individual or family. From experience we have found that once the correct foundations are put in place, homeowners who have pledged a property or a room are invariably very happy with the whole experience.”

The Ukrainian Refugee Response Team consists of an Initiation Officer, who provides information and next step guidance to any homeowner considering offering a home.  The team’s Property Reviewer will then review and catalogue the property.

Waterford City and County Council’s experienced Ukrainian Response Team is dedicated to making the process of matching, meeting and placing as seamless as possible for both homeowner and refugee(s).

The relationship begins from the moment the homeowner receives the initial call from the Relationship Manager. They will provide all relevant information, answer questions and work with the homeowner to find a suitable match with ongoing support to both parties throughout the duration of the stay.  This approach has proven to be hugely successful to date with many new pledges of accommodation coming on the recommendation of existing pledgers.

Noeleen added, “For anybody who is considering pledging a property or a room, we would encourage them to get in touch with the team.  The first step is quite literally a conversation, with no commitment.  If a homeowner is then happy to proceed, we’ll work through the whole process with them, informing and supporting them at all stages of the process.”

For further information you can contact the Ukrainian Refugee Response Team by calling 058 22059 or emailing offerahome@waterfordcouncil.ie

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Image: Waterford City and County Council Ukrainian Refugee Response Team

l-r: Kay Sinnott-Browne Relationship Manager, Clara Murphy Initiation Officer, Noeleen Osborne Project Co-Ordinator, Eamonn Clancy Property Reviewer and Fiona Browne Relationship Manager

Waterford City & County Council Chief Executive will leave a ‘remarkable’ legacy

On Friday, May 31st Michael Walsh retired as Chief Executive of Waterford City and County Council.

A native of Ballyduff Upper, his career in public service began in 1983, after graduating with a degree in Civil Engineering from UCC.  He began his career with Waterford County Council and worked in various engineering roles between Waterford and Limerick before progressing to the role of Director of Services with Waterford City Council and becoming Waterford City Manager in 2007.

In June 2014 he was appointed Chief Executive of the newly amalgamated Waterford City and County Council, to oversee the merger of the former city and county councils as part of local government reform.

Over the course of the decade, Michael has been credited with fulfilling the Council’s mission statement of establishing Waterford as a vibrant and sustainable place to live, work and invest in.

Key projects, under his stewardship include securing almost €200m investment in the North Quays Strategic Development Zone (SDZ), leading Waterford City and County Council in delivering on all housing tenures and leading in the tackling of vacancy and dereliction, the regeneration of rural towns and villages under the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund (URDF), the establishment of the Waterford Greenway, consolidation of Waterford’s rich history and heritage, and playing an integral role in the establishment of the South East Technological University.

He also received praise for his role in the relocation of Waterford Crystal Centre to the heart of the city in 2010.  Walsh’s multi-faceted approach to the regeneration of the Viking Triangle has helped create a vibrant urban quarter and world-class destination.

Paying tribute to the outgoing Chief Executive, Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr Joe Conway said, “Michael will leave a remarkable legacy.  From City Manager to Chief Executive of a newly amalgamated local authority, Michael navigated uncharted waters with his indefatigable sense of calm, collectedness, and determination.

“I know I speak for my fellow councillors, as each of us had the opportunity to pay tribute to him at last month’s final Council meeting of this term.  The overwhelming sentiment was one of gratitude for the steadfast commitment Michael has shown to Waterford over the last ten years.  His sense of pride in Waterford was also tempered with realism and his ability to underpin the best strategic direction of the city and county.”

Mayor Conway added, “On a personal level, I’ve known Michael for well over twenty years having been elected to Tramore Town Council in 2004, and as a school Principal before that, and for as long as I’ve known him and worked with him, there is no one more committed to Waterford and its people.  And behind that gritty veneer, there was a humanity and softness that often shone through that formed his caring attitudes and which I grew to admire and appreciate.

“Ina iomlán, rinne sé gaisce ar mhaithe le Phort Láirge, a fhoireann agus a mhuintir.”

Under Michael’s tenure several key initiatives were implemented such as the launch of the Shop Waterford, Support Local campaign to bolster local businesses and retail sectors impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, along with the introduction of a citizen freephone number, which allowed isolated or cocooning individuals to arrange for groceries or deliveries and provided reassurance that someone was there for them.

Beyond local achievements, he also served as the Chair of the County and City Management Association (CCMA), the representative voice of local government management, leading out on its strategic direction in representing, advocating and influencing policy on behalf of local authorities.

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Image Free to use: Patrick Browne

Michael Walsh at North Quays SDZ site

Minister Humphreys announces €926,515 Outdoor Recreation Funding Boost for Waterford

Dunmore East Coastal walk

Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, has today announced €16.1 million nationally to support 69 Outdoor Recreation projects. Under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme (ORIS) 2023 funding of €926,515 has been announced for four projects in County Waterford giving a further boost to outdoor recreation and local communities in the county.

The implementation of the ORIS scheme is aligned with the objectives of ‘Embracing Ireland’s Outdoors – National Outdoor Recreation Strategy 2023 to 2027’.  Projects funded under the ORIS scheme are delivered by Local Authorities and other key stakeholders.  Waterford City and County Council will deliver the latest four projects being funded by this announcement in collaboration with local communities as well as other state agencies and partners.

ORIS provides funding for the development of new outdoor recreational infrastructure.  It also provides support for the necessary repair, maintenance, enhancement or promotion of existing outdoor recreational infrastructure in rural areas across Ireland.  The scheme supports outdoor recreation activities such as walking, trekking, cycling, kayaking and hiking.  It helps to make use of the resources of the countryside that contribute to healthy active lifestyles, and it supports the economic and tourism potential of the area for both local communities and tourist visitors alike.

Today’s announcement by Minister Humphreys sees funding being allocated under ORIS Measures 2 and 3 for the following projects:

  • Crough Wood Walk – Embankment stabilization project: €175,505 in ORIS funding
  • Dunmore East Coastal Walk – Upgrade of Steps at Portally Cove: €108,000 in ORIS funding
  • Benvoy Beach – Upgrade of existing access to beach: €143,010 in ORIS funding
  • Ardmore Beach – Development of 870m walkway at Ardmore Beach: €500,000 in ORIS funding.

Welcoming today’s announcement Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. Joe Conway has said, “It is wonderful to welcome today’s funding announcement under the ORIS scheme. This funding will go towards developing and enhancing some of our favourite trails right across county Waterford.  The timing of this announcement couldn’t be more fitting as it gives another boost to our outdoor recreation network right at the start of the summer season.  Waterford is very grateful of the support that it has received in recent years from the Department of Rural and Community Development in support of our key outdoor recreation amenities and other rural projects.

“I would also like to thank staff of Waterford City and County Council and, in particular, the Rural Economic Development team which works hard to continually submit quality funding applications under this and other schemes in conjunction with our communities and other stakeholders.”

This latest announcement comes after an allocation of €100,000 under the ORIS Project Development Measure in January and a further €133,857 announced in April to fund six smaller scale outdoor recreation projects here in Waterford.  The recognition of Waterford’s potential as an important outdoor recreation location by central government was further indicated last December when Waterford was selected to be one of just six counties to be part of a pilot scheme which will see the preparation of a County Outdoor Recreation Plan, a process which is currently ongoing.

For further information on Waterford’s fantastic walking, cycling and outdoor recreation opportunities visit www.visitwaterfordtrails.com and get out and active this summer!

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 Image (Karen Dempsey)

Dunmore East Coastal Walk which has received funding under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme in order to upgrade steps at Portally Cove as part of the continuing improvement of this walking trail.

Water Safety : Alert Minimize the risks with advice from Coast Guard, Water Safety Ireland & RNLI

water safety irelandThe Coast Guard, Water Safety Ireland & the RNLI have issued advice to help keep people safe at Ireland’s waterways over the June bank holiday weekend.
Water based activities increase at this time of year, as do the number of incidents in which people get into difficulty. Minimize the risks with the following advice for a safe enjoyable bank holiday weekend.

How to enjoy water-based activities safely:

  • Check the forecast for your local area, including tide times and sea conditions for coastal activities.
  • Always carry a means of calling for help and keep it within reach.
  • Water temperatures are still cold. Acclimatise by getting in slowly, swim within your depth and avoid staying in the water for extended periods. Swimmers should be aware of rip currents and if caught in one should swim parallel to shore and then back to land.
  • Swim with others, never alone, in recognised, traditionally safe bathing areas. Lifeguarded waterways are listed at https://watersafety.ie/lifeguards/.
  • Supervise children at all times near water and never use inflatable toys in open water as currents and breezes can cause persons to be swept out to sea, endangering those onboard or others trying to assist.
  • If you find yourself struggling in the water unexpectedly remember Float to Live. The best way to float is to tilt your head back with your ears submerged. Try to relax and breathe normally. You can gently move your hands to help you stay afloat if you need to. Spread your arms and legs out to improve stability. Once your breathing is under control, call for help or swim to safety.
  • Stranding is a risk when low tides expose areas of the coastline for walkers to explore sandbanks. Watch out for incoming tides, local signage, and always carry a fully charged mobile phone.
  • Wear a Personal Flotation Device when paddleboarding, kayaking or boating, or when angling from shore.
  • Avoid alcohol as it impairs judgment, balance and coordination – all essential for swimming and boating and avoiding hazards in the water.

If you see somebody in trouble on the water or along the coast or if you suspect that they are in trouble, dial 112 or use Marine VHF channel 16 and ask for the Coast Guard.

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Media Enquiries to:
Water Safety Ireland, The Long Walk, Galway. info@watersafety.ie / www.watersafety.ie; Tel: 091-564400
Joanne Walsh 087-199.0339 / joannewalsh@watersafety.ie
Padraig Judge 087-459.0156 / padraigjudge@watersafety.ie