County Limerick town's website gets great reception from locals

Norma Prendiville

Reporter:

Norma Prendiville

Email:

normap@limerickleader.ie

County Limerick town's website  gets great reception from locals

Olga Makarova, webmaster of Rathkeale.com

WITHIN hours of going live, the new Rathkeale website, Rathkeale.com,  had sparked a huge wave of interest, with hundreds of people clicking on or registering their delight at the new venture. 

Launched with no great fanfare last Thursday, Rathkeale.com has been adding visitors and friends ever since. 

And larger towns and even cities could take a leaf from the Rathkeale site, as it is very clear and easy to navigate. 

The driving force behind the venture is David Lamont, a member of Rathkeale Community Council. “There was an old website which was hard to maintain. It needed an update and some new technology,” he explained. 

David redesigned the website using some new technology and it  offers a news feed, an events calendar and a directory as well as background information, historical facts and places of interest. 

It also has a Rathkeale Pride section where significant achievements by individuals or groups, past and present, can be showcased. The site also offers people a chance to get involved as a volunteer and in addition, highlights the Rathkeale Rising Challenge Champions, where people who make Rathkeale a better place to be can be nominated.

“It is a website by and for the people of Rathkeale,” David continued. “It is pro-business and farm; pro-jobs and income; pro sports, clubs and charity; pro-well-kept and rising property values; pro-pleasant and healthy living; welcoming to friendly visitors, politicians and celebrities.”

“It is designed to be easy to  maintain,” David continued. “That is the problem with many websites. They start off well. You go to the Home page and it’s wonderful but after that, not much.” 

Happily, however,  the Rathkeale website will have the huge advantage of having a dedicated webmaster, Olga Makarova who, with David Lamont will curate the site. 

Their mission statement is spelled out online: “This website champions the inclusive, progressive and principled community of Rathkeale in Limerick, Ireland. It’s for the benefit of all the people who are proud to be here. We highlight useful and fun information about the community and advocate for high standards and respect.”

“We are not there to stop people putting things up on the site,” David stressed. “We are there to stop people abusing it.” 

Moreover, it has also been funded by the people of Rathkeale through the Rathkeale Community Council. 

The website is certain to be well-used by the local community but it is also likely to be frequented by Rathkeale people working and living abroad who want to stay in touch with home and with events at home.