We lost the Christmas bit for the printed edition of this one. Here you can view it as it was meant to be seen. (lol)
This week I’m going to talk about the good, the bad and the ugly about our lovely City. As usual, this is my view from the blue and not everybody will agree with me, but it’s important to understand that if you don’t agree with me, then you are wrong.
Ok let’s begin.
Christmas in Waterford. There’s going to be a whole column in a few weeks about the wonders of Christmas in Waterford, past and present, but for now, a snippet. Firstly, I think the City Council have done a great job with the Christmas lights in Waterford. The blue ones by the Cathedral are beautiful and the Quay always looks resplendent during the holiday season. The Granville have done well with their colourful window display and Flash has created the first pub decoration that can be seen from space. Also, whoever owns that house on the Tramore Road deserves some kind of civic reception for the effort they put into entertaining the whole county each Christmas. (Although I will say that there should probably be a warning sign to oncoming cars “Danger – Cars suddenly slowing down”). Honourable mention goes to the house in Ferrybank that can be seen from all parts of the city at Christmastime, you’re doing your city a great service. More carol singers and santa hats this year folks!
The lack of a footbridge at Tower Hotel end of the Quay. Yes okay it would cost millions, but, it would do absolute wonders for Waterford City. Right now, on certain rainy days, the city centre may as well be in Denmark for the people who live across the bridge. A foot bridge at the Tower Hotel would massively increase footfall in the city centre and it would also reduce traffic. If they can spend €310,000 on a cycle path in Tramore that could have been made by out of work builders for a fraction of the cost, then they can figure out a way to make this happen.
Almost all of the people. Generally, Waterford people would do an awful lot to help one and other. I read of two stories last week where wallets were handed in with money and cards untouched. You can’t move for the charity quizzes in this city…almost every second day there is a group of people trying to raise money for the sick, homeless and generally less well-off amongst us. And this is from, without a doubt, the worst hit county of the recession. If we’re not walking for solace we’re running for the Special Olympics or marching to save our hospital. We have a mighty community spirit here and we should be proud of it.
Scumbags. See above there when I had to say almost all of the people? We can’t hide the fact that robberies and muggings have increased tenfold in our wonderful city and, almost unbelievably, Waterford’s good name is starting to suffer because of it. I hate the way scumbags, with their hoodies up and their tracksuit bottoms tucked into their socks (I hate to generalise here but if you tuck your tracksuit into your socks and you don’t own a bicycle, then you’re a scumbag) can walk around this city and do what they please without any fear of authority. My parent’s house was burglarised last year and the guards came out with these all too familiar words “oh we know who did it, but sure we can’t do anything about it”. No wonder they are doing so much damage, they seem to be above the law. And when they do somehow manage to get caught, the judge sends them off with a warning or gives them a couple of weeks in Jail. Meanwhile, the ordinary decent citizen is threatened with jail on a daily basis for falling behind on their loans, or not paying a fine in time. Scumbags, and I’m sorry if that title offends some people but that is all they are, do not deserve tolerance or lenience, and they dodo not deserve to be called Waterfordians.
The Park. We have to give credit where it’s due, Waterford People’s Park is top notch. On a summer’s day (I think it was a Thursday this year) there is no better site than a playground full of kids, people jogging, couples walking arm in arm and sandwiches peeking out from picnic baskets. The park hasn’t changed much in one hundred years but the changes that have been made – the fountain, the gym, the kiddie’s playground have been superb, and it’s always spotless. The familiar faces of our street cleaning team do a truly awesome job. Special mention must also go to the Playground in Fenor, I genuinely have never seen anything like it. If you have kids and you haven’t been here yet then you just have to experience it. It’s a credit to the village!
The Old Flour Mills. Someone please tell me, in words that I can understand, why that god-awful monstrosity is still over there? During the Tall Ships we all got to walk along that side of the Quay and we got a glimpse of what can actually be achieved over on those Quays. Cafes…shops…bars…there really is so much potential for that part of the city, but instead we have a multi-story hotel for rats. I don’t care what anyone says, and I don’t care who I offend, Ferrybank is Waterford City. It’s closer to the clock tower than Lismore Park so we need to do more to make it part of the whole city experience – am I alone with this belief?
How Do! A nicer, more gentle man you will rarely meet. If you pass him on the street, please give him a how-do and if you can spare a few quid why not pass it to him discreetly. He’s a humble man but a decent one too.
There can only be one winner – The Ard Dri. I went to the presentation Debs in 1998 (or 1999) in the Old Jurys Hotel and I can still remember how the place looked. To see how it is today, in the most perfect piece of land imaginable in Waterford, it really is a disgrace. I have no idea who owns it and I also have no idea who has authority over it, but surely whoever the powers that be are can come together and make some kind of decision about how they can get rid of the eye-sore and create a new premises. I don’t even care if it’s another hotel, because Waterford is a beautiful city from the sights that the Ard Ri used to afford. Get it sorted!