Community-led regeneration projects at Denny St and Day Place, Tralee Co Kerry

Feature /

The Heritage-Led Regeneration of a county town was a wonderful project that enabled the conservation of protected structures located within designated Architectural Conservation Areas (ACAs) in Tralee town.

These works have had a huge benefit to the local community in that they have helped to revitalise one of Denny Street's most historically intact and most decorative buildings (Number 17) where stuccowork and joinery detailing far surpasses most of that of the rest of the street - it is also located at the southern end of the street and as such, as a strong visual impact being located at the end of the western run of buildings. The railing project at Number 12 Denny Street has safeguarded the decorative scrolls from loss and has provided a much-needed rejuvenation to this part of Denny Street. The owner of this property first approached the ACO about conservation of railings in 2017. Communication has been maintained since then and it is a most positive impact showing how a project can be sustained and progressed over years.

The benefit of the Day Place project will have a sustained positive impact over the next decades. The streetscape and building edge, which was the view of pedestrians, were suffering from lack of conservation and maintenance. A sense of underutilisation and neglect, compounded by railings damaged by rust due to the ravages of water and time, broken and cracked stones, damaged walls and collapsing entrance arches, all created a sense of a street forgotten by time, a place to hurry past without seeing the craft of 200 years ago. That has now changed. In terms of local economy, the HTI project at day Place has been project managed locally, finance managed by a local accountant, engineering works overseen by a local engineer (all building owners on Day Place) and the main contractors are also local contractors. The lime craftsmen and stonemasons are also local, as are the joiners. All lime products were sourced from Stoneware Studios in Cork. Limestone was sourced from Kilkenny via a Castleisland firm (O'Connor's). The blacksmith who was sub-contracted, is from Kilkenny and is a member of the Irish Artist Blacksmith Association.