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With the support of Kilkenny LEADER Partnership, the dedicated community of Thomastown can now look forward of the town’s most exciting renovation in recent years.  The restoration and upgrading of, what the community group the Thomastown Community River Trust (TCRT), slightly tongue-in-cheek insist is “Kilkenny’s only eco-friendly, Olympic size, outdoor swimming area” is now in progress!


In 2008, flooding severely damaged the town’s weir and the impact destroyed the local swimming area.  has been dedicated ever since to the restoration and development of the river’s amenities.  TCRT, KLP and  community stakeholders established a 3-phase plan to bring back the beauty to the river and surrounding areas.    Phase 1 brought beautiful riverside walks, stabilized river banks, enhanced river aesthetics, preserved local heritage and is now completed.   Stage 2 of the works in the agreed plan outlined the restoration of the former swimming area.


The 120 meter swimming area is due to be completed in early September.  Swimmers can enjoy wading, shallow and deep swimming depths to accommodate all swimming abilities and ages.   A lifeguard will be on duty during specified swimming times.


One the unique selling points of the project is its eco friendly perspective.  The project is working with Ecological Engineering Company, Rivus, to ensure the project is completed with all natural products.  Woven willow panels are used instead building blocks.  When their extended root systems develop, they boast the same strength as concrete.  As a bonus, every meter of willow removes 500kg of C02 from the atmosphere in the year.



TCRT Chairperson Aideen Comerford thanked Kilkenny Leader Partnership for their support and paid tribute to the effort and coordination from LEADER   that made this project a reality.    TCRT has its sight on the Old Mill Wheel and other historical features along the river which could benefit from careful restorations.



KLP is happy to support this project which demonstrates what can be achieved in a town which has a dedicated enthusiastic community with their towns heritage, social and commercial interest at heart.