The Minister for Rural and Community Development Heather Humphreys TD, has officially opened Ballydesmond’s Pocket Park.
The Park, funded from the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund & Cork County Council was designed as a multigenerational and environmentally attractive space. The park is the result of an extensive community consultation process conducted in 2018 and 2019, delivered as part of a larger plan to support Ballydesmond’s socio economic needs.
The plan was supported by the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund to the value of €56,250, with a total of €75,000 including match funding from Cork County Council. Planning for the new pocket park was granted in early 2021 and later that same year, Cork County Council received further Rural Regeneration and Development Funding of €774,000, totalling €903,000 with match funding from Council.
Much welcomed by the community, the pocket park provides increased accessibility and connectivity within the village centre and keys amenities, resulting in an increase in footfall for the village centre and subsequent economic spin off with an enhanced experience for shoppers, the community and visitors. The pocket park offers social and cultural benefits as well as an exercise area. It will also be used for future events and festivals.
North Cork Fine Gael Councillor John Paul O’Shea welcomed the Minister to Ballydesmond. Commenting at the official opening, Cllr O’Shea said “Ballydesmond Pocket Park is for its community and will be a feature that goes from strength to strength over the years. It was requested by the local community, for the community, the definition of our role as an enabler of community development.”
Speaking in Ballydesmond, Minister Humphreys said, “Through this project, we’ve delivered much needed public realm improvements and recreational amenities, including this wonderful new ‘Pocket Park’ right in the heart of the village. Time and time again we see how delivering enhanced public spaces like this do so much in terms of making our towns and villages better places to live work and raise a family.”
Chief Executive of Cork County Council Valerie O’Sullivan added, “Ballydesmond’s Pocket Park located in the village centre provides an opportunity for increased socialisation and increased engagement between residents of the village and is truly a wonderful new amenity for the village.”