Thursday March 25th, 2021 was a lovely day in the life of Courtown . The weather was good, and a small group of people from Seal Rescue Ireland were planting 150 trees. They were positioning them along the new very popular walking trail. Hopefully they will be left grow to maturity. They will really enhance this area of Courtown down from the burrow road carpark.
This much neglected road has a few very welcome seats where people of all ages can sit down for a rest. Some more seats and a few picnic tables could be added to make the place more family and aged friendly. This road and surrounding forest and sea areas have great potential for attracting more families with very little work.
Firstly, the car park needs a clean-up. The edges need trimming. The few trees growing there and their brick bases need attention. The ditch around it could be replanted and some wildflowers and shrubs helping biodiversity could be added.
There is a nice notice board listing the bird life and other flora and fauna of the area. As this is a richly historical area another strategically placed information board would be most welcome. This could make people aware of the history of the area and also of the excellent walking trails that exist detailing their length, time ,difficulty etc.
Some areas on the edge of the Burrow Road are regularly used as a garden waste dump. These areas need tidying up and planting, which might discourage dumping.
A further measure would be to be seal off the Burrow Road at the entrance to the car park. This could be done for a trial period initially.
The air in this area would be greatly improved if vehicular traffic were banned. The carbon monoxide levels would be reduced thus making life healthier for young and old alike.
I remember last year in a lockdown period when the road was closed off to vehicular traffic. The road from Courtown to the Burrow was full of families with children on bikes and trikes, and scooters and skateboards. It was totally safe for young families with buggies. It was a safe fun place to be for young and old. It was car free .Children and families played in the Cricket Pitch. They loved it. Courtown was on the way back in popularity stakes with the local population.Older people were delighted with the safe walk back to the Burrow.
Then without notice or consultation the road was opened up again and the families and children disappeared because the road was no longer a safe place to be.
If the road was closed to vehicular traffic, it would put an end to reckless youths driving through the grassy areas and churning up the grass making it unsafe to walk across it
It would put an end to the regular annual invasion of people using these grassy areas as camping facilities during the summer months.
The wooded areas are kept spotlessly clean by anonymous people who bring their bags and litter pickers to pick up used coffee cups , corks, bottles etc. on a daily basis. You will never see their names in lights or in local papers. They do it for the love of the woods.
Then we have the end of the Burrow road. Here there is a broken down unpainted ugly neglected fence. It is a disgrace to any Council. The branches and shrubbery are never ever cut or trimmed back It is an area that could be enhanced with the addition of a few new native trees. In the left-hand corner there is an ugly unpainted 40-foot container containing some gear from a local club. They open it up during the summer months. Could all this and the sailing club be clustered at the south beach
The woodland trail ,so well signalled in the Courtown cabin at the boardwalk now comes to an end. This area needs another sign directing people to continue the walking trail back to Dodd’s Rocks and on to Ballymoney. It has some of the best walking hiking trails around.
The existing Burrow Car park could do with a few seats and also a proper notice board detailing the views you have from that area. This is walking territory trekked by hundreds of people on a regular basis who come back and spend money in Courtown. It is a ready made, waiting to be tapped visitor and tourist facility. What about a visitor centre here ?
Courtown’s Green Way is ready made and is making life so much healthier for lots of people already. It could be so much better with restricted vehicular traffic on The Burrow Road.
It is time for some creative thinking with the future of Courtown in mind.
Think Greenway, Think health and safety for a brighter future for the next generation in Courtown Harbour