National Tidy Town Competition Winners.
Tidy Towns is an annual competition, first held in 1958, organised by the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government in order to honour the tidiest and most attractive cities, towns and villages in Ireland. The competition is organised on a national basis, and entrants must complete modules including Overall Developmental Approach (5 Year Plan), The Built Environment, Landscaping, Wildlife & Natural Amenities, Litter Control, Tidiness, Waste Minimisation, Residential Areas, Roads and Streets & Back Areas.
The Competition is judged during the summer months (May to August) by an independent adjudicator, who issues each town with a written report complimenting positive development and actions and providing positive suggestions on how the community can improve their general surroundings. Since the competition's conception no less than three different Longford towns have won the overall national award in the competition.
Winner 1989, 1996, 1998.
A traditional estate village, Ardagh features spectacular stone walls and Tudor-Gothic cottages, among other important architectural features. The village’s architecture, heritage and other aesthetic
attractions have combined to bring in both national and international visitors, including the more discerning tourist, over the years.
In 2012 Abbeyshrule took the coveted award for the first time in the history of the Tidy Towns competition. Abbeyshrule also claimed the prize of being Ireland’s tidiest village. The village was awarded 312 points out of a maximum of 400. The judges praised it for its “splendid displays of landscaping”, its picturesque bridges, walking trails and “excellent” quality of houses. “On the day we visited, the sun was out, flowers were blooming and the village was gleaming,” the judges noted.
Nestled on the north-eastern shore of Lough Ree on the river Shannon, Newtowncashel has sometimes been described as an island parish — surrounded as it is by water on one side and bog land to the north and east. Certainly, its unique location has come to the attention of TidyTowns judges; in 1980, the village took home the national award. One of the draws of the village is its historical and indeed mythological links to an ancient time, which imbues it with its unique character.
Newtowncashel looks out on two lake islands, Inch Clearaun, which houses an ancient monastic settlement dating from the 6th Century, and Saints’ Island, which is connected to Newtowncashel by a causeway and is the location of an Augustinian church dating to the 13th Century.
Source: The Tidy Towns of Ireland - Celebrating 50 years.