ULSTER Unionist Dromore Councillor Olive Mercer also pointed to the many efforts made by councillors and a local authority itself limited in its influence but nonetheless actively pursuing improvements.
She said, “Many of the properties surrounding the Market Square area are privately owned and Banbridge Council has very little power to influence the owners to undertake improvements. However the Council does meet with developers and owners to encourage and assist where they can.
“The Council also facilitates the Dromore Partnership, which regularly meets with business and community representatives, developers, property-owners and elected representatives to hear their views as to how the town can be improved and marketed.
“The Council has been instrumental in the refurbishment of the Dromore Town Park and more recently the restoration of the Town Hall, which will house the library and provide community space on completion of the work.
“Plans are underway for the launch of the Restore Dromore Project, which will tackle dereliction in the areas which have been identified as of greatest concern to the community, namely Church Street, Market Square and Bridge Street.
“In these areas empty units will be enhanced by creating a series of false window facades to give the appearance of occupied buildings. Limited grant funding will be made available for eligible shopfront improvement works, such as plaster and gutter replacement, re-painting from an agreed palette of heritage colours, the installation of new shop frontages, windows and doors, new signage and feature lighting.
“Further improvements to the Market Square include plans to provide tubs and planters for new floral planting and the creation of a small seating area on a derelict site adjacent to the Square.”
Mrs. Mercer said would welcome the opportunity to meet with residents to listen to their concerns and/or suggestions regarding the improvement of Dromore and surrounding areas; she can be contacted on her mobile, 077 3472 9728.