When Ballyleague/Lanesboro isn’t staging top class food and monster festivals, it’s usually busy with everyday projects, such as the development of the promenade in 2015 or the planting of stonework flower beds earlier this year. There’s always something to be done on Roscommon and Longford’s picturesque border.
Last week, for example, the local lights committee came together to ensure Ballyleague and Lanesboro’s brightest Christmas yet, with 19 lights features illuminating the town.
Chairman of the Ballyleague Christmas Lights committee, Noel Moran, said the volunteers are always striving to improve on the year before.
“We are growing our lights collection every year and working closely with our friends and neighbours in Lanesboro to add new features.
“We got a great reaction from local business owners, sponsors and volunteers this year so we have brought additional lights into play throughout the village and joined up with Lanesboro Lights Committee to help install a new Christmas boat feature on the Shannon.
“We also had a great response to our appeal for volunteers and we had 19 people out helping. We really had great support from the locals.”
Christmas lights cost money, however, and Noel highlighted some of the fundraisers which he hopes will gain favourable support locally.
“We will have a quiz on Friday, January 12th in Rosie’s Bar and we also run a lotto with the Tidy Towns and that generates some funds. Also, on December 29th we have a free draw and anyone who has entered into the lotto throughout the month of December will be in with a chance of winning one of our hampers.”
Gerry Trimble is also part of the Ballyleague Christmas Lights team and when he’s not busy doing that he’s the chairman of the Ballyleague Village Renewal Committee. He was thrilled with this year’s lights and highlighted some of the features.
“The committee have put on a very good display and we have lit up the church and opposite it for the first time ever. We’ve also put lights down (part of) the Strokestown Road and LED lights through the village.
“The local Men’s Shed also decorated the old thatch cottage and there area also string lights running through the town. It’s looking very well,” he said.
Away from the bright lights, Gerry has had a busy year in the town as the renewal committee continued their stellar work of the last number of years.
“We’ve been planning ahead this year for a number of small projects we have in the melting pot for 2018.
“One of the projects this year was a 400 metre gravel walkway from the old filling station out to Moher. That has extended the walking area and a lot of people are now availing of it and taking in the scenic views.”
Speaking of scenic views, the Ballyleague Renewal Committee is also in the process of growing a wildflower meadow near the north harbour. The reason for this is Tidy Towns’ new focus on bees and pollination and it’s hoped that the wildflowers will provide a habitat for the insects as the town prepares for another busy year of its own in 2018.