Longford’s ‘hidden gem’ The Albert Reynolds Peace Park wins Green Flag award

Longford Leader reporter

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The Mall (Albert Reynolds Peace Park) is a hidden gem in Longford town and it has been recognised with the An Taisce Green Flag award for the fourth time.

Longford County Council Cathaoirleach Cllr Paul Ross said parks and open spaces are particularly important in the context of Covid-19, and the excellent facility, which is The Mall, provides a safe space for people of Longford town and surrounding areas and its value can not be overestimated.

Cllr Ross added, “I would like to thank Longford Town Suburbs Ltd and its Chairperson Dennis Hughes who manage The Mall in partnership with Longford County Council. The Mall was judged alongside the top parks in the country.

“Thanks to the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection, the Community Employment Supervisor Joe Duffy and all the participants whose hard work was the driving factor behind achieving this award. This year all the outdoor gym equipment has been replaced around the park. The new pedestrian bridge has also increased the number of people availing of the Mall.”

The Green Flag Award which is an international parks award recognising the very best green spaces around the world.
Parks are judged on a number of criteria including a management plan, health and safety, environmental sustainability, community use of the park, conservation, cleanliness, ground maintenance, horticulture and general presentation.

The Green Flag puts a special emphasis on increasing biodiversity, by not using herbicides, allowing parts of the park to grow wild and planting pollinator friendly plants.

Paddy Mahon, Chief Executive of Longford County Council, said “Longford County Council is very proud to receive the Green Frag Award and I would like to extend congratulations to all involved that maintain and manage this beautiful amenity in Longford town as parks and green spaces are extremely important to the health and the emotional wellbeing of our communities.

“This vital amenity provides us with a place to relax and enjoy nature, and mind our wellbeing especially in these difficult times where people can safely enjoy the great outdoors. We are very fortunate to have this beautiful place on our doorstep.’’

The judges said: “The Mall (Albert Reynolds Peace Park) is a hidden gem in Longford town. The park is extremely well maintained by the CE scheme and its supervisor. Longford County Council is very lucky to have such dedicated people working for the community.

“The park is very well utilised and has many well organised Council supported events run during the year.”