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Tidy Towns Competition 2011 Launched

Tidy Towns 2011

The 2011 Tidy Towns Competition was officially launched today by Mr. Phil Hogan, T.D., Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government.  Minister Hogan was joined in Farmleigh House by Mr. Martin Kelleher, Managing Director of SuperValu, latter once again, proud sponsors of this years competition.

Speaking at the launch, Minister Hogan said, “SuperValu and the Department of the Environment are asking people to get out and get their hands dirty for Tidy Towns  in 2011. Last year saw over 760 towns and villages entering the competition and it is our intention that it will be even bigger and better this year.

The Minister also expressed his gratitude to SuperValu, the competition’s sponsor, for their continued support over the last twenty years. “I’d like to thank SuperValu for their unwavering support which has helped to sustain and grow this competition over the years. It must be one of the longest-running sponsorships of its kind in Ireland.

Thurles has taken part in the Tidy Towns Competition for many years increasing its points annually, mainly due to the magnificent work undertaken by Thurles Town Council staff, who are to be congratulated for their physical efforts in the planting of flowerbeds and litter control.

In September 2009, the overall National Tidy Towns Award was won deservedly by the village of Emly, in West Co. Tipperary.

Mr. Martin Kelleher, Managing Director of SuperValu stated, “We live in challenging economic and social times, but what the Tidy Towns Awards demonstrate time and again, is the total commitment and dedication of people up and down the country to their local communities.  For us there is no better way of demonstrating our commitment to helping build vibrant local communities than this sponsorship. Tidy Towns is a real example of the benefits that volunteering, hard work and perseverance can bring to a local community. The devotion of the Tidy Towns committees and their members is an inspiration to us all.

In order to support the work of Tidy Towns groups, the Minister also announced a special grant to assist local authorities in improving the appearance of our urban and rural environment.  These grants, totalling €350,000, are to support a once-off event to be called ‘Civic Responsibility Week ‘ which will run from May 9th to May15th.

The Minister stated, “I am pleased to launch this initiative which will assist local authorities in improving the visual amenity of their areas.  With the forthcoming State visits it is important that we present our country in the best possible light, as a clean and green destination to live, work and do business.  In order to maximise the impact of this initiative, I will be encouraging local authorities to strengthen their links with existing community groups, including Tidy Towns committees. I would ask these groups to seize this initiative.  Today sees the launch of a new campaign which asks people to ‘get their hands dirty for Tidy Towns ‘ and I hope that ‘Civic Responsibility Week ‘ will give even further encouragement for more people to become involved.

Speaking on ‘Enforcement Policy ‘ the Minister stated: “There remains within our society, a small group of people who continue to recklessly dump and litter. This behaviour must stop; it is socially unacceptable and has economic implications for our society as a whole. Tidy Towns has been improving the environment in which we live for decades and has helped to foster Ireland’s image abroad as ‘Clean and Green.’  I would like to see the competition continue to grow and I would encourage everybody to get out there and do their bit for their community.”

Note: The closing date for receipt of entries for this year’s Tidy Towns competition is May 20th 2011.

Tidy Town’s leaders can go straight to this years entry form by clicking here.

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