Community, Town Development,

Planning & Environmental Issues


Blessington & District Forum

a Community-based Voluntary Body

The Forum is a 32 member body representing Blessington and the surrounding area, and facilitates all matters in relation to community and societal development, planning, town development, and environmental issues in cooperation with Wicklow County Council and other Statutory Bodies.

Established in 2001, Blessington & District Forum is the united community body for the area.

See our Facebook page for more information of BDF activities.

A copy of our Operating Protocol can be found here.

An archive of some previous activities can be found here.

See below for current project on Upgrading the Christmas Lights for Blessington

Statement on The Downshire Hotel

A number of local residents has approached the Forum regarding rumours surrounding the Downshire Hotel.

The Forum has received confirmation from an official of the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth that there are no arrangements or agreements in place for the usage of the Downshire Hotel site in Blessington as an accommodation centre for International Protection applicants at this time.

The site was offered to the Department of Integration for the accommodation of Ukrainian Beneficiaries of Temporary Protection; however this was rejected by the Department.

Should we be made aware of any further information or updates in the future, the Forum will keep the local community updated.

2024 AGM

10th April 2024


The Annual General Meeting of Blessington & District Forum (BDF) was held on Wednesday the 10th April 2024 from 730pm to 9pm in the Avon, Blessington. The following officers were elected as members of the Executive Committee :


1.Michael  Doyle – Chair


2. Donal McCormack – Deputy Chair


3. Jason Mulhall – Secretary


4. Andra Coogan-Johnson – Minutes Secretary


5. Liam Fay – Treasurer

A motion to adopt the name ‘Constitution’ in lieu of ‘Protocol’ for the rules of the Forum, proposed by Frank Hanlon and seconded by Susan Rossiter, was adopted by majority vote.


Local Area Plan Workshop

12th March


BDF will host a workshop on Tuesday March 12th with focus on all aspects of the upcoming Local Area Plan for Blessington.   As capacity is limited, this will be a ticketed event, with tickets costing €0.00 – for all details please check out the eventbrite page and book your ticket.   Tickets are limited to one per person to ensure fairness for all to attend.   In the event, attendees will break off into small groups to discuss all aspects of the Local Area Plan.   This feedback will then be used to inform a submission to WCC.   Attendees who were not able to make the Coimin Centre event should access the WCC portal and use the available information to help familiarize themselves with the diverse contents of the LAP.   We look forward to meeting people on the evening, and putting together a substantial submission to WCC.    Tickets here:

Local Area Plan for Blessington

Pre-Draft Consultation


Wicklow County Council has announced that the Pre-Draft consultation process for the new Blessington Town Plan will commence on Wednesday the 21st of February and will run until Wednesday the 3rd of April. The Council has prepared a new online consultation portal.

The portal sets out the key topics that the plan will address.  However, general submissions can also be made online by members of the public through this portal.

You may also make a submission in writing to Blessington LAP, Administrative Office, Planning Department, Wicklow County Council, County Buildings, Station Road, Wicklow Town, A67 FW96.

A Drop-In Public Information Day will be held on Friday 1st March in the Coimin Centre, Blessington from 10.00 to 13.00 and from 16.00-19.00 and will be attended by the Plan Team. 

This is the beginning of the long-awaited plan for our town and will give everyone a chance to put forward their views and submissions.  Please do so.

The portal can be contacted here.


2024 Blessington Christmas Lights

One of the projects BDF works on every year is the Christmas Lights. We cannot do any of that without the generous help of the businesses around town, and the community in general, for which we are very grateful and thankful.

It’s 2024 and our lights have reached ‘end-of-life’ and need to be replaced with a scheme similar to that shown in the video below. The estimated purchase price is in the region of €90,000. We anticipate a 75% LEADER grant towards the purchase cost but we will still have to raise the remaining 25% plus the costs of installation, storage, and insurance.

Every €1 donated equals €4 in Grant Aid.


We wish to make it as simple as possible to contribute. Please go to our DONATION page to chose an amount that fits your budget and help brighten out town this Christmas!

If you prefer to make a single donation, please forward it to the Forum account as follows

IBAN IE63 AIBK 9332 3669 3130 45 _____ BIC : AIBKIE2D


New Park Development

Blessington & District Forum would like to advise the community of Blessington that the development of the new park adjacent to the Cairn Homes Sorrel Wood estate is still under development and is an ACTIVE CONSTRUCTION SITE.  Accordingly, members of the public should not be accessing this area.  We understand that it will be made available to the community later this year, hopefully early summer.  There is a secure fence along the park boundaries and at any excavations, bridges and play area.

The following additional precautions are also being put in place :

  • Additional warning signage to be installed along the boundary fence line and on any fencing / barriers within that work area.
  • Warning signage to be installed next to the pond areas, which also have silt barriers around them which should prevent anyone accidentally stepping into them.
  • All playground equipment / areas have already been fenced off to prevent access.
  • A daily inspection is being carried out to ensure the bridges and any excavations remain fenced off outside of working hours.
The community park has been a long term target of the BDF and has been ongoing goal since the late 90s / early 2000s. Its taken a long time, but the BDF have been to the forefront in keeping this on the agenda within WCC, within County & Local Development plans, Developer plans, and have been onsite on a number of occasions to ensure the park areas are the best they can be.
Phase1 of the park will deliver landscaping, tennis courts, green play areas, walkways, bowling courts, and a fully accessible playground and more…
Phase 2 of the park, tied in with the newest planning application, and will deliver large untouched areas, with walkways and mutliple possibilities for the local community once it’s handed over.
The BDF will vist the site once again in February and should be in a position to provide more updates at that time. In the short term, please remember it’s an active construction site… but when finished we will have 30+ acres of community park for the local community.


Blessington eGreenway 2022

The following is an extract from the Design Statement lodged by Wicklow County Council with An Bord Pleanála (ABP) in January 2022 (FULL documentation can be accessed here) :

The development will take place in Blessington Co Wicklow with route around Poulaphouca Reservoir via Lacken, Ballyknockan, Blessington , Haylands  , Knockieran Lower, Knockieran Upper, Carrig, Sroughan, Lacken, Ballynastockan, Ballyknockan, Carrigacurra, Annacarney, Valleymount, Monamuck, Humphrystown , Baltyboys Upper, Baltyboys Lower, Burgage Moyle,  Russellstown,  Russborough,  Rathballylong, Tulfarris, Glebe East,  and Burgage More and passing adjacent to the villages of Valleymount, Ballyknockan and Lacken before returning to Blessington at Knockieran Bridge.”

Observations and comments were lodged by concerned parties with ABP by close of business on March 4th.  The Observations by Blessington & District Forum can be viewed here.


Blessington Accessibility Audit Report Launch Evening

April 2021

On the evening of April 21st the Blessington Access Group launched the Blessington Accessibility Audit Report. Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly officially launched the report, and attendees also heard from Paudie Healy from Universal Access Ireland who built the report, Pierce Richardson from DFI, Ann Healy Changing Places Ireland and Mai Quaid Older Peoples Council of Ireland. The event had a large public attendance, and a number of TDs and Councillors joined the event as well. 
The Blessington Access Group is a project of the Blessington & District Forum, and has partnerships with Blessington Tidy Towns, the Disability Federation of Ireland, Wicklow County Council and other local community partners.  
“Leave no one out, Leave no one behind” is the over arching message from the report, and th group look forward to working very closely with Wicklow County Council and all stakeholders to ensure the different recomendations in the report are achieved to ensure Blessington is accessible for all. 
If you would like to contatc the Blessington Access group you can send an email to:
A copy of the report is available here:  Blessington Accessibility Report


Local Initiatives