Belfast Telegraph

New £140k fund to enhance much-loved beauty spots

By Helen McDowell

Two local beauty spots are to benefit from a windfall totalling almost £140,000.

Crawfordsburn Glen is to undergo a major makeover to boost its appeal to local people and visitors alike.

The works will include picnic benches and seating, additional play equipment suitable for children with disabilities, new pathways which lead from the park into the Main Street of the village, making them accessible to wheelchair users and parents with push chairs, as well as improving the biodiversity and wildlife habitat of the area.

The North Down Borough Council scheme will cost a total of £144,672. A grant of £108,504 towards this cost has been secured in principal from Down Rural Area Partnership (DRAP).

The area at the historic Cockle Row Cottages in Groomsport is in line for a £39,700 boost, including a DRAP grant of £29,775.

This second phase proposal will focus on further developing the site by means of creating disabled and child friendly access to the picnic area, creating a modern bench seating area, adding more waste bins and the provision of a piece of art/sculpture which will reflect the historical nature of the village.

New signage will tell the story of the history of Groomsport especially the harbour area, and a village noticeboard will be erected.

The grants have been welcomed by Alderman Anne Wilson, a member of DRAP, who said, "I particularly welcome the grant of £108,000 to the Crawfordsburn Glen and Mill Pond project. This scheme will include works to the paths, provision of benches, landscaping and major improvements to facilities at the Glen and the Dam.

"This follows a long-term campaign by the residents and an application for a grant under the integrated Village Scheme.

"A further £29,000 has been awarded to Groomsport to improve the visitor infrastructure around the Cockle Row Cottages.

"I have no doubt that the completion of these schemes will be of great benefit both to local residents and tourists."

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