The East Cork Municipality have revealed concept plans for the future of Towns Park Midleton and the Baby Walk.
Towns Park a green haven over 14 acres would create a visual connection with the distillery the implementation of a woodland management plan and better access to the Dungourney River.
The ambitious ideas include Lawn terraces with low maintenance wildflower meadows and seating areas along with the creation of a new Bridge to facilitate looped walks between existing woodland and parkland.
Cathal O’Meara Industrial Designer and Landscape Architect told the November sitting of the borough, land shaped by industrial decline would be transformed into a new green beating heart for Midleton and boast a network of new paths and picnic areas with play nodes for natural, creative play within the parkland area.
“Visual connection with Midleton Distillery should be restored and the implementation of a Woodland Management Plan. The original owner of Midleton Lodge was Marcus Lynch, who owned and operated the Mill as a Woolen Mills. These Mills now Jamesons Distillery are a strong part of the heritage of Midleton and an increased visual connection with the Park, forms a central component of the Park.”
Under the new concept design Distillery walk cafés and restaurants would be incorporated into the new park by creating raised and paved tables for slowing traffic, increasing the pedestrian realm, removal of the heritage wall and allowing for outdoor tables and chairs while establishing a strong visual connection with the park.
Councillor Noel Collins welcomed the plans stating “when landscaped it will prove a little bit of heaven amongst the stormy seas of life for all of us.”
Fellow Midleton based Cllr East Cork Municipality Chairwoman Susan Mc Carthy also welcomed the plan. She said “’it’s great to see a proposed expansion of the park.”
Sinn Fein Cllr Danielle Twomey said it would be wonderful to see the programme come to fruition.
However she had some concerns over the health and safety at night particularly around the river with increased footfall.
While there is currently no funding available at present for the scheme the local authority state that they are currently looking at ways of implementing the plan for the Baby walk into the town enhancement scheme.
It’s expected the remainder of the project will be done on a phased bases as funding is sourced.