Extract from Dublin City Council Parks Strategy 2017-2022: ‘The quantity of parks (approximately 17% of the Council’s administrative area) is then analysed…..A key policy proposal of providing a range of 2.5 ha to 3.8 ha of parks per 1000 population is concluded’ 

‘Amenity’ describes that part of the Park that will consist largely of open green space, featuring walks and gardens, as opposed to those sections set aside for Sports or Research, Innovation ad Learning purposes. Over time, it will be developed to incorporate facilities and functions that require relatively small areas of land, and some possibilities as to what these might be are illustrated on the diagram immediately following:

The Park could comprise general and themed Walks, sponsored Gardens, Allotments, Workshops (e.g. Mens Shed, Makers Club), Obstacle course, Playground, Bandstand/Open-air Theatre, Nature/diversity/wildlife areas, Trees, etc.

If you have any thoughts on this, please feel free to submit them through here. Community involvement in the development and maintenance of the Park with a view to building more resilient and engaged Communities is a key part of the thinking here. So feel free to get involved even at this early stage.

How big should the Park be?

  • The Park with its multiple facilities and features, together with the Sports Clubs, the School System, the Library, the 100-plus Community Groups and the Commercial infrastructure are the foundations of a thriving Home Town. Many of the pieces are in place or getting there; the Park is the missing link.
  • Our Park will not be simply a large expanse of Green Space, though that is important. We envisage that our Park will evolve over time to provide a wide array of features and support many activities. A selection of possibilities is listed here:
    • General and Themed walks
    • Sponsored Gardens
    • Allotments
    • Men’s Shed Clubhouse and Workshop
    • Makers Club
    • Scouts/Guides Dens
    • Obstacle Course
    • Playground
    • Bandstand/Theatre
    • Biodiversity and Wildlife
    • Woodlands
  • We’re not just building for today or tomorrow – this decision will make or constrain Ashbourne for generations to come. Who knows what our grandchildren will ask of a Park in 2050? Show Foresight and Wisdom and think long-term.
  • Remember, Today’s ‘Pie in the Sky’ is Tomorrow’s normal. Less than 90 years ago, Dublin Corporation build large social housing projects where the houses had no bathrooms!!!

Best practice on Park size:

  • There is lots of research out there to help answer the question ‘What is the appropriate size for a Regional Park serving Ashbourne and its environs?’ Here are some (there’s many more):
    • The World Health Organisation formula suggests 160 acres is appropriate
    • The Future Technology report commissioned by the Ashbourne Playspaces Network in 2017 advises 83 acres
    • Dublin City Council’s Parks Strategy Plan would see a Park of 140 acres as being appropriate
    • Natural England’s ANGSt standard suggests even higher numbers.
    • The documents and reports supporting the above figures can be accessed on our Bookshelf.

Other parks you may have visited:

  • Here is a selection of parks that Ashbourne residents may be familiar with:
    • Blackwater Park Navan – 70 acres
    • Ardgillan Castle and Demesne – Fingal – 194 acres
    • St Catherine’s Park – Fingal and Kildare – 200 acres
    • St Annes Park, Raheny and Clontarf – 240 acres
    • Malahide Castle Demesne – 260 acres
    • Newbridge House – 400 acres
    • Phoenix Park – 1747 acres


Some examples of parks of similar size are listed below.

Blackwater Park Navan

Ardgillan Castle and Demesne – Fingal – 194 acres

St Catherine’s Park – Fingal and Kildare – 200 acres

St Annes Park, Raheny and Clontarf – 240 acres