Opinions divided on village works

Richhill War Memorial. INPT07-208.
Richhill War Memorial. INPT07-208.

There has been a mixed reaction to the new £1 million environmental improvement scheme in Richhill, with some concern at the future loss of parking spaces in the village.

ABC Council has also clarified a number of details of the scheme after confusion around the works.

They have said there are no plans for a one-way system or a pedestrianised area. The war memorial is also being moved but just by three metres.

The scheme will include re-surfacing and paving, street furniture, lighting and tree planting.

A spokesperson said, “The war memorial will be removed for professional cleaning before being reinstated approximately three metres from its original location.

“The move is to accommodate the road being widened behind the war memorial.

“Parts of the footpath will be widened to bring them in line with modern standards and to ensure compliance with current legislation.”

Councillor Gareth Wilson, who works at the DUP office in the village, said there had been some complaints when the scheme first started but these had levelled out and the contractors were ensuring access to all the doorways.

He said, “I think it’s going to look good in the end.”

His view was shared by Neville Woods of Supervalu who said there was “a bit of pain” but that it would be a “great job” when it is finished.

However, one trader expressed her reservations at the reduction in parking spaces. “We clearly need more parking and not more pedestrian areas as Richhill relies mainly on local people and if locals cannot park they will shop elsewhere,” she said.

“It will probably look good but it’s not going to be practical.”

Another resident said he would prefer to have car parking rather than bigger pavements.