‘Don’t knock village’

Dear Editor,

I’m responding to a letter published in the Mail a number of weeks ago portraying a most negative, untrue picture of life out here in the suburbs of Lurgan (Waringstown).

I have lived in the village for the past twelve years and have enjoyed life here. The primary school is first class excelling in both education and extra curriculae activities. Indeed the school choir won the prestigious Songs of Praise UK Choir of the Year a few years ago and on the sports front the Northern Ireland Primary School Football and Hockey Cups.

Both Churches are very progressive in providing a wide range of activities to all age groups in the village and surrounding areas to both the youth and senior citizens. During the summer holidays the youth of both Churches were involved in tidying up the village and helping elderly and disabled residents in practical work around the home. As we all know Waringstown is known throughout the province and further afield as the home of one of the top cricket clubs in the country and has a top class youth academy which all bodes well for the future.

The village also annually hosts two major events attracting thousands of participants and spectators to the village; the vintage rally (which raises much needed funds for NI Kidney research) with cars/bikes/trucks/tractors/lorries of all sizes and shapes and the Clogher Protestant Boys Flute band (widely regarded as one of the most talented marching bands in the country) who attract up to eighty bands for their parade, Both events are very much family-orientated and are always nights to remember.

The Planters Restaurant is one of Northern Ireland’s premier restaurants and we have had the recent reopening of the Village Inn which provides a relaxed/friendly atmosphere for friends and family to meet socially for refreshments

There has been well publicised incidents of crime in the area and this is unfortunately in keeping with other areas in the borough. Although Waringstown in Bloom committee are no longer operating there are people in the village making an effort to keep Waringstown tidy such as Kingshill LOL 319 who maintain one of the flower beds.

The Waringstown Community development group are working tirelessly to secure more facilities for the village. The Neighbourhood Watch team is very progressive in endeavouring to make the area safer and deter the criminal element.

It is all too easy to be negative and critical and play the blame game ie blaming the Council or residents in the village for this and that. Ultimately in any society it boils down to Teamwork; TEAM together everyone achieves more. And wanting to live in a safe secure pleasant area - it doesn’t take much to say hello to someone in the street, pick up an empty crisp packet on the pavement or indeed visit an elderly neighbour and show some humanity. So I conclude by congratulating all the above groups and individuals who all are trying their best to make life in Waringstown a pleasant experience for all.

Yours sincerely

Mr Johns