By Ronan Dodd
A total of 40 groups around North Tipperary, including schools and voluntary organisations were honoured this Monday night by North Tipperary County Council at its annual Environmental Awareness Awards.
The awards were presented by Mayor of North Tipperary, Cllr Micheal Lowry, and county manager Joe MacGrath.
Mayor Lowry paid tribute to all those involved and congratulated the award winners.
A prize fund of almost €10,000 was awarded on the night and North Tipperary County Council hopes the awards will encourage more communities who are making improvements year on year to improve their local environment.
“The Environmental Awards is a great competition, promoting good community spirit and an awareness of environmental issues at local level,” said North Tipperary’s Mayor Micheal Lowry.
“Without the hard work and dedication of these committees, schools and individuals within our communities, our local heritage and environment would be significantly depleted”.
He also commended the hard work of all the Tidy Towns and Villages groups throughout the county who have been going from strength to strength in the national Tidy Towns competition.
According to Deirdre Cox, the North Tipperary County Council’s environmental awareness officer, the competition is a great opportunity for the local community.
“We encourage all communities who are working hard all year at improving their local environment to enter the competition and get some recognition for their efforts” she said.
“This is a great opportunity to reward local communities for their hard work throughout the year. We can only improve our environment if we all work in partnership with each other.”
Mr MacGrath said the awards were recognition of the effort being taken on a voluntary basis by people around the county.
“This is about recognising communities for the work they do day in, day out, week in, week out, to make the quality of life better.
“This council acknowledges that, no matter what we do as a council, you will never replace the kind of effort you get from communities around North Tipperary,” he said.
Full story in this week’s Tipperary Star.