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Plans To Put Fun Back Into Picnicking.

My Waste outlines plans to put fun back into ‘Picnicking’, while taking 2.25 million single-use bottles & cups out of circulation this June Bank Holiday weekend.

More than 2.25 million single use plastic bottle and cups are used in Ireland each Bank Holiday Weekend.
My Waste has some simple tips for enjoying the great outdoors and picnicking with less waste and stress this Summer.

Planning ahead for dining in the great outdoors this June bank holiday weekend will help reduce waste, keep millions of single use cups, bottles and cutlery from ending up in our waste system or as litter and reduce costs to local businesses, according to My Waste.

Each day in Ireland more than half a million single use coffee cups, and close to a quarter of a million single use plastic bottles are used – the equivalent of 2.25million single use cups and bottles over a bank holiday weekend.

My Waste, Ireland’s official guide to waste management, is appealing to day-trippers and holiday makers to reduce waste and leave no trace when picnicking and bench dining by following some simple tips:

1 – New is Not Always Best.

Exactly how much do you need for a picnic? Picnicking and bench dining are light hearted and fun events so don’t rush out to buy lots of new items for enjoying the great outdoors – use mis-matched plates and cutlery, old cushions and rugs etc. Lots of school supplies also work well for picnics such as lunch-boxes and water bottles.

2 – Reuse.

Bring your own cup/water bottle, cutlery & reusable straw etc…Using reusable cups and straws for take-away drinks and self-services not only helps to reduce this waste but also helps to reduce the cost to businesses. Tap water from home and topped up later for free at a refill.ie point will provide great hydration. A knife, fork & spoon wrapped in a cloth napkin fits in even the smallest bag.

3 – Portion Size Matters.

Be realistic about how much food will be eaten. Packing too much food is exhausting and a struggle to transport, and it is likely that it won’t all be used leading to food waste. Pack the food you like and know you will eat. Also – remember to leave room for ice-cream.

4 – Spice Up Your Life.

Have a favourite sauce or condiment? Use a small spice jar to transport a small quantity of your favourite spice or nominate one person on the picnic to bring the condiments and flavourings. If you must use sachets – only take what you need – nobody needs 20 sugars/ketchups – these will be wasted within minutes and they represent a big cost to business and to our environment.

5 – Bring it all Back Home.

Bring any waste you might have home and dispose of it in your domestic bin ensuring any food waste goes into the food waste bin and all recyclables are placed clean, dry and lose into the recycling bin.

Most of all – enjoy the Irish great outdoors this summer.

Speaking at the launch of the My Waste campaign, Minister of State Green Party Politician Mr Ossian Smyth said, “We can keep costs down for local businesses up and down the country this summer by simply bringing our own cups and containers and reducing the amount of single use items we use. Aside from the positive impact for our society and economy as we reopen, this will make a real difference to our local environment – we can prevent litter and plastic waste from single use items from polluting our natural beauty spots.”

Ms Pauline McDonogh, Waste Prevention Officer with the Southern Regional Waste Management Planning Office and My Waste spokesperson said, “By following My Waste’s simple tips holiday makers and day trippers can help protect Ireland’s beauty spots from litter and reduce unnecessary waste, all the while saving money, supporting small businesses and improving their outdoor experience.

Simply using reusable cups and bottles is a great way to minimise the amount of waste generated. It is worth noting that reusables were not banned during the Covid-19 pandemic. Government policy continues to promote contactless coffee and advocates for reusable options. There are also 1,500 free tap water points in businesses, public buildings and outdoor locations thanks to Refill Ireland”.

“After such a difficult year, it is important that we can enjoy all that Irish great outdoors have to offer. This can be achieved in a very stress-free way, by packing light or purchasing some edibles on route, using items we already have at home, and keeping that keep cup or water bottle close to hand”, she continued.

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Thurles Town’s Magical Riverside Walk.

With huge “Thank You” to Catherine Fogarty, Rona Sorrell, Una and David Crowley, Mary Joe Fanning, Eamonn Medley and Eamonn Mason and indeed all who have contributed their voluntary service to this area of Thurles.

Thurles Town’s Magical Riverside Walk.

© Thurles.info 2021.

The Riverside Walk is a magical place
With butterflies, otters and trees,
There’s rushes, wild flowers and ivy,
Bird houses and honey bees.

There’s bugs and nettles and hedges,
Long grasses and ducks galore.
And it’s nice to take a walk there,
Alongside the River Suir.

And as you go along the walk,
There’s something else to see:
The entrance through a little door
Inside a rotting tree.

A tiny fairy lives there.
She checks that you are good
And taking care of nature,
Like everybody should.

And late at night she comes to life
And flies through Thurles’ streets;
Checking under pillows
For unwanted children’s teeth.

So why not visit this fairy
And the otters and ducks and flowers?
Come stroll along the Riverside walk
And while away the hours.

END

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Thurles Public Disappointed By Litter Collection Failure.

Thurles.info is disappointed to report that once again the litter bins within the Thurles Town Park area are overflowing this weekend.

Situation as at Saturday evening May 8th 2021.
The above six individual bins were located in the area of Thurles Town Park.
Pictures G.Willoughby.

Although we had reported that some improvement was evident last weekend, it would appear that the path to progress may be slower than we had anticipated.

Two issues have emerged which stand as obstacles to improvement.

Firstly, it would appear that the bins are not being emptied on a sufficiently regular basis. The bins were emptied before last bank holiday weekend, but they were not emptied this weekend and rubbish has piled up again.

Secondly, the extra bins added to the Town Park lack any signage to indicate that they are there for the public to use. Consequently, they are being overlooked and remain relatively empty.

We know someone is listening to the pleas of the public and we are grateful to them, but we now ask that they address the issues of infrequent rubbish collection and poor signage as a matter of priority.

Please help to keep this wonderful amenity, that is Thurles Town Park, tidy.

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Dog Faeces & Civic Pride.

Thurles as a midland town has everything one could wish for; Theatres, Nightclubs, a Swimming pool, Gyms, a Museum, a County Library, excellent Shops, Restaurants, Hotels, Top Primary & Secondary Schools, Two Excellent Third Level Institutions and a very low crime rate. Indeed, as a place to live you could not find better, with caring neighbours and for the moment at least, affordable housing.

The Covid-19 pandemic in Co. Tipperary has seen an upsurge in the purchase of dogs as household pets. In turn, prices for dogs have soared in value and lockdown has even led to a higher business turnover for vets, because of this wish to increase canine ownership.

During lockdown people have turned to ‘man’s best friend’ for comfort and support and dogs have been a positive addition, great company and even protection for those living alone in many homes.

This sudden increase in dog ownership has regrettably demonstrated a negative side also. One major downside for people residing in Thurles, (whether they own a dog or not), has been an increase in dog fouling around our streets and public park areas. This has suddenly given an annual voice to some local councillors and to community activists, latter with an eye to becoming possible future councillors.

An bhfuil cead agam dul go dtí an leithreas? Irish: Can I go to the toilet?


With more people out exercising their new dogs, instances of dog defecation on footpaths have risen somewhat and many local residents have become mildly annoyed by the problem, especially those whose homes directly open unto footpaths and road frontage.

Dog Fouling – One Solution.

If dog fouling is a problem on our streets, what can we do to solve it and who can we turn to for help?

Local authorities are responsible for the control of dogs under the Control of Dogs Act 1986. They can appoint dog wardens, impose fines and take court action against dog owners. Tipperary County Council currently employ two dog wardens.

Although one might be quick to criticise Tipperary County Council officials and their appointed dog wardens, for failing to deal with the situation, dog fouling is a nationwide problem that all Municipal District Councils are finding extremely difficult to manage.
Why? Because Dog fouling is almost impossible to police under current legislation. To impose a fine on a dog owner who lets their dog defecate on a footpath without appropriate remedy; you need to catch them in the act and they have to refuse to clean it up. Most people when directly shamed or threatened with a fine by the dog warden, will pick up their dog’s faeces.

Under these conditions, it’s not realistic to expect a dog warden alone, to deal with such issues, especially when one also considers the fact that the majority of people walk their dogs early in the morning and late in the evening, when the dog warden is off duty.
With few onlookers and the public in general reluctant to shame such individuals into compliance, and with the dog warden’s back turned, it is a temptation during quieter times of the day to leave dog faeces on the footpath.

Thankfully, this issue has already been recognized at government level. The existing laws to deal with dog fouling are now recognised as being inadequate. A more logical and practical approach to policing irresponsible dog owners has been proposed through a Bill (Deputy Seán Crowe TD, Dublin South West), to amend the Litter Pollution Act of 1997. Mr Crowe seeks to amend existing legislation to, “make it an offence for a person, in charge of a dog in a public area, to fail to produce evidence of having a suitable bag or other instrument with which to dispose properly of dog faeces, when requested to do so by a dog warden, a litter warden or a member of An Garda Síochána”.
This proposal Bill therefore if adopted, (and there is every probability that it will be unobstructed) will make recent local radio and press reports almost antiquated.

More However Is Still Needed

More effective policing is certainly one solution, but much more is also needed. Once a dog owner picks up their dog faeces, it is vital that they have a suitable place to dispose of it. This is one small area where Tipperary County Council can do more; by simply installing an adequate network of bins on our streets and in our park lands. At least then, dog owners won’t be deterred from cleaning up, in the knowledge they are no longer forced to carry dog faeces on their person, over long distances.

To be fair to Tipperary County Council, same have provided dispensers and free bags (Mutt Mitt a degradable pick-Up Mitt), and raised awareness of the issue.

Dog fouling is not only an unsightly and filthy nuisance, but it is also a dangerous health risk. Dog faeces can expose us to illnesses, with children and pregnant women most at risk. Toxocariasis, an albeit rare condition, can be contracted from infected dog faeces and can cause organ damage and eye disease.

“Every problem has a solution and if a problem doesn’t have a solution, then it’s a fact of life, legislate or live with it.”

There’s a wise old saying, “Every problem has a solution and if a problem doesn’t have a solution, then it’s a fact of life, legislate or live with it.”
Dog fouling doesn’t have to be a fact of of life, but the solution to the problem of dog faeces isn’t simple either. It will involve a combination of better legislation, policing, deterrents, facilities, education and greater public awareness.
Tipperary County Council will have a lot more work to do, to change dog owners mindsets, but in the end local pedestrians, prampushers and cyclists will be extremely grateful and supportive.

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Five Fun Easter Games For Family Members.

For an extra bit of family fun this Easter Sunday, why not play some of these great Easter games. Each one requires nothing more than a few materials that can easily be found around the house. What’s more, each game can be played indoors or outdoors and can be played by kids of all ages.

Easter Egg Hunt.

Easter egg hunts on Easter Sunday have grown increasingly popular in recent years. In the most basic version of an Easter Egg Hunt, chocolate or toy Easter eggs are hid indoors or around the garden. Participants search for eggs, collecting as many as they can find and placing them in their Easter basket or bag. You can add a competitive element by having a time limit and declaring the winner as the person who found the most eggs. For even more ideas for an Easter Egg hunt click HERE.

Draw the Bunny.

Anyone familiar with the classic “Beetle Drive” game, will understand how to play “Draw the Bunny”. All you need is paper, pencils and a dice. For a full set of instructions visit the excellent games resource “Family Games Treasure House” by clicking HERE.

Egg and Spoon Race.

There’s nothing as fun as an egg and spoon race and it’s no wonder the game has been around for generations. Get out your spoons and eggs. Put an Easter spin on things by substituting hard boiled eggs for chocolate ones.

Pin the Tail on the Bunny.

This game puts an Easter spin on the traditional “Spin the Tail on the Donkey”. The game is simple. One player is on and blindfolded. In their hand they have a cotton tail. On the wall there is a picture of a bunny. They are spun around three times and have to try and place the cotton tail on the bunny. For the bunny, you can draw one or cut one out from a picture. For the cotton tail simply use a piece of cotton wool with sticky tape attached.

Roll the Egg.

Another race game, this will have everyone in stitches. Using chocolate or hard boiled eggs, participants have to roll their eggs with their nose from the agreed start to the finish line. Lots of silly fun to be had with this game.

We wish all our readers a very Happy Easter.

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