Awards for Tidy Towns, Tidy Estates and Environment projects were presented by Wicklow County Council on Monday last (March 6th).
The Awards were presented by the Cathaoirleach of Wicklow County Council, Cllr Pat Fitzgerald, and the Chief Executive, Mr Bryan Doyle.
These Awards are an opportunity to recognise at county level the work done by Tidy Towns committees, residents associations and others who work to look after and enhance our local environment.
Roundwood Tidy Towns received the sustainable tourism award for work undertaken to develop new walking routes around the Vartry reservoir.
Arklow Tidy Towns were recognised for the landscaping projects undertaken around the town, most notably a memorial garden at the former pottery works which featured some of the pottery moulds.
Blessington Tidy Towns picked up two awards including one for waste prevention for a range of activities including the Stop Food Waste challenge, a waste electrical campaign and a no poster campaign.
They also were recognised for their work on biodiversity. Their Bumble Bee Roundabout has proven popular in the town and beyond gaining 16,626 likes on Facebook when a picture was posted. They also mapped all green spaces in the town.
Edible Bray picked up an award for their work with Bray Tidy Towns and Common Ground creating an edible landscape on Albert Walk among other projects.
Schools were also recognised on the night with Gaelcholaiste na Mara receiving an award for their collaboration with Arklow Tidy Towns which has resulted in them setting up a junior Tidy Towns within the school.
St Mary’s junior school picked up an award for the garden they built at SuperValu with Blessington Tidy Towns.
Blessington Men’s Shed group received an award for their restoration of the former library in the town.
Having been nominated by Arklow Tidy Towns, Servier picked up an award for work with community groups throughout the town, their engagement in local projects and their work to make the Servier facility carbon neutral in all its activities.
The Main Street competition has long been a feature of these awards and on the night Stratford on Slaney collected first prize for smaller towns. Avoca won first prize for medium sized towns and Blessington won first prize for larger towns.
In the estates competition Avalon in Arklow was judged to be best of the private estates while St Martin’s Drive in Aughrim won for local authority estates.
Aughrim received an award on the night for again gaining the highest score in the national competition while Hollywood was recognised with the endeavour award for gaining the biggest increase in marks in the national competition for 2016.
The Cathaoirleach, Cllr Pat Fitzgerald, congratulated all winners on the night and noted that there had been strong gains in marks in Tidy Towns across the county, demonstrating the huge efforts made by the local volunteers. The Tidy Towns 2017 campaign is already underway and we can all expect to benefit from the work done by local groups and should all do our bit to help as much as we can.