Kate Nolan, Martina Dempsey (Union Hall); Karey Egde, Ciaran Nicholson (Ardfield); Mary Anne McCarthy, Shaun Taylor, Carmel Cronin (Durrus); Chairman of Cork County Council Western Division, Cllr Joe Carroll; Helen Forde, Marie Connolly (Drinagh); Ann Redmond, John Forde (Ballydehob); Deirdre Kelly (Cork County Council), and Cllr Paul Hayes at the awards ceremony for Cork County Council’s annual Anti-Litter Challenge. Photo: Anna Groniecka

A very tidy performance

Certificates have been presented to 21 villages across county Cork in recognition for their ongoing work in the fight against litter.

The awards were given out as part of Cork County Council’s Anti-Litter Challenge 2023.

The challenge made a welcome return this year following a 3 year hiatus due to the pandemic.

Overall, 64 community and voluntary groups entered the competition this year and were grouped into large village and small village categories in each of the council’s 3 divisions.

Over a 6 week period in May and June, each village was assessed and scored for cleanliness. Standards were reported to have been “extremely high” this year, with some villages recording no litter at all.

Amongst the winners, Kildorrery took the top spot in the large village category in the Northern Division, Saleen in the Southern Division, and Durrus in the Western Division.

Shanballymore, Cúil Aodha, and Ardfield were victorious in the small village category in their respective divisions.

Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr Frank O’Flynn welcomed the return of the community challenge and praised community and volunteer groups for their “unwavering commitment” to creating a cleaner environment for residents and visitors alike.

“Each year hundreds of volunteers across Cork spend long hours sweeping, cleaning and gathering litter from footpaths and roadsides. Their tireless efforts and dedication are truly commendable, they are unsung heroes in our community. Congratulations to all those who participated.”

Chief Executive of Cork County Council, Tim Lucey also praised the community effort: “We owe a huge debt of gratitude to volunteers who work so hard to keep our villages clean and tidy. Through the enthusiasm and dedication of these community and voluntary groups, we can clearly see the positive impact they have in their localities.

“Cork County Council’s annual Anti-Litter Challenge was introduced to acknowledge this tremendous voluntary effort. Well done to each of the participating groups and to the winners for their well-deserved recognition.”