Hello and Happy New Year
2011 was a really busy year for the Playground Campaign and for me, so I spent only a very little time posting updates to this web site.
A bit of history - The Windy Arbour Playground Campaign started life online in Spring 2009, so this Spring we are hoping to celebrate our third birthday.
To celebrateour birthday we have produced a 2012 calendar in two formats, which features some lovely photographs of wildlife along the Dodder and the Slang rivers.
All of the Illustrations in the Calendars were created by members of the playground campaign. I especially want to thank our administrator Sophie Hamilton for allowing us to use the wonderful poster she created when she was just eleven. We used Sophie's colourful poster to illustrate the Month of April.
Thanks also to photographer Scott Kelly, another long time supporter of the Campaign, who got up really early one morning last Spring to take the great shots of wildlife along the Dodder that make up the bulk of the photographs in the Calendar.
We are also using Scott's photographs to create a series of postcards promoting Windy Arbour Village, which will be for sale in local shops. We hope you will support our first fundraising efforts, as we are hoping this year to open a Credit Union Account and form a Management Committee.
The council's Green Spaces Report has acknowledged that the Dundrum area, which includes Windy Arbour badly needs children's play facilities and it has allocated more thatn 520,000 euro to improving green space and creating urban playgrounds across its five electoral areas, so we are definitely hoping DLR's parks Department will spend some money to build safe play facilites for Childen here.
First Members Meeting
Last Spring we redesigned the web site and we had our first ever members meeting in The Dropping Well Pub. Following that, The campaign made a number of submissions to Dun Laoghaire County Council about its Green Spaces Report.
Windy Arbour Village
We also began working with the businesses based in Windy Arbour to form a Windy Arbour Village Group. We had two meetings with local traders in Ryan's Pub. The first was with Hal Ledford, CEO of the Dun Laoghaire Chamber of Commerce, while the Second, in November was with Wessel Badenhorst, DLR's Economic Developement Officer.
Wessell told us how businesses all across the five electoral areas that make up DLR are organising themsleves into local groups bent on maximising the money that is available from the council to improve their communites. The message from DLR to businesses is that it wants businesses to take the lead in improving their communities and it will support businesses working with active residents and community groups like ours.
It's not just in Dun Laoghaire that businesses are forming local associations either. There are new groups in Terenure, Rathfarnham, Churchtown, Monkstown, Ranelagh, Foxrock, Dun Leary Town, Monkstown AND DUNDRUM. The Churchtown Business Association got funding from DLR last year which helped it to organise two events, a Summer Fun day in De la Salle School and a Christmas tree and lights switch on opposite SuperValu - Dun Leary Town had a really ambitious ice fair where Santa arrived on a Harley Davidson bike.
Wessel's advice to us here in Windy Arbour was to think about what makes our village unique and to focus on ways that we can promote those unique characteristics. Many of us wanted to highlight our wonderful river walks and our long history of industries connected to our two rivers, so we have created a postcard saying Greetings from Windy Arbour, which you will soon to able buy to show your support for improving our village.
We are also working with Dun Leary's Heritage Officer to put a series of signposts around the Village highlighting our history and encouraging people to walk.
DLR County Council says it is very keen to work with business groups to improve the local area and it has promised to match whatever money can be raised by local trader groups to carry out improvements to the areas that come up with the best ideas fo improving trading conditions.
So the Playground Campaign is working actively with traders right across Windy Arbour Village to figure out how we can improve the shoppping experience in the village. We are looking at the provision of better signage, flower baskets, car parking, landscaping, a christmas tree,and of course, we are also hoping for the provision of some children's play facilities near Windy Arbour.
At our second meeting of the Windy Arbour Village Association, we elected a steering group consisting of Eva from Indulge Hairdressers, Michael from Hunters Chemists and Brid from Ryan's Arbour House and myself, Shan Kelly of the Windy Arbour Playground campaign.
The Village Association is hoping to meet later this month to plan our events and activities for the year ahead, so if you have any ideas you'd like us to consider, please let us know.
Just send me a message via this site or email [email protected]
We are hoping it might be possible to begin by organising a car boot sale one Sunday in Ryan's pub car park. Other ideas that have been put forward were for a fun fashion competition. We are planning to contact all lolcal schools this year to ask for their support in finding ways to involve schoolchildren in the campaign.
Our 2012 calendars are on sale in shops in Windy Arbour Village which are supporting this campaign.
We are hoping to organise a few events this year with the Windy Arbour Village Association.
Let us know what you think, either through the Village Association's page on Facebook, through our own facebook Grpoup which is here www.facebook.com/groups/windyplay
All the best in 2012, from Shan