The spirit of Skerries helps it to strike gold in Tidy Towns awards
SKERRIES "strong community spirit" was part of the winning formula that saw it scoop a gold medal and a regional award in the Tidy Towns 2010.
The adjudicator's report recorded the progress made by the local committee in organising competitions within estates and private houses and noted "This is the way to go."
It was "a real pleasure to look at all the different shapes, sizes and designs of houses in Skerries", it said.
A "very high standard of care" was noted in several areas of the town.
The adjudicator's general impression was that there seemed to be "a strong community spirit as well as a long-term view of most issues".
The regional awards, which are worth €2,000 each, went to Skerries, Ennis, Co Clare, Tallanstown, Co Louth, Letterkenny, Co Donegal, Emly, Co Tipperary, Killarney, Co Kerry and Westport, Co Mayo.
In Dublin city the winner was Chapelizod, followed by Shankill, in Dun Laoghaire Rathdown; Skerries, in Fingal, and Lucan, in South Dublin, while Raheny, Dalkey, Malahide and Terenure were "highly commended".
Other Dublin areas to be "commended" were Temple Bar, Sandycove and Lusk.
A new Smarter Travel award, sponsored by the Department of Transport, was won by the Tidy Towns Committee in Ballymun, Dublin 9, and the Repak-sponsored Best Bring Bank national award, was taken by Kill, Co Kildare.
Straffan won the County Award in Co Kildare, with Kill "highly commended" and Rathangan "commended."
Moynalty was the county winner in Meath, with Trim highly commended by the judges and Batterstown receiving a "commended" mention.
Tallanstown, Co Louth, won the title of Ireland's tidiest town -- and also walked off with the tidiest village accolade.
The town/village, which has a population of 600, also picked up two other awards, including the midlands east regional winner and a gold medal.
The local committee received a trophy and a €10,000 cheque.
Environment Minister John Gormley, presenting the prices at the Helix in DCU, said it was a remarkable achievement for Tallanstown to take the top award in the face of strong competition. He said the event was a reflection of the community spirit in Ireland -- "something we needed to tap into in these recessionary times".
Lismore, Co Waterford, was voted Ireland's tidiest small town while Killarney, Co Kerry, took the award for the tidiest large town.