A delegation from the local Tidy Town committee travelled to Belfast’s Titanic Quarter on Tuesday of this week for the announcement of the 2014 Best Kept Towns Awards. Carrickmacross was one of only thirteen towns in Ireland, north and south, to be invited to enter the 2014 competition. There were seven hundred eligible towns considered so to be chosen as one of just thirteen was in itself was a huge honour and places Carrick in the top 5% of towns in the country and, as was stated at the event, ‘places us among the creme de la creme of Irish towns.’ The Tidy Town delegation were feted on the SS Nomadic, also known as the little sister of the Titanic, built in 1911. Guests of honour at the awards included Mr Dinny Mc Ginley, Minister of State Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht, Mr Mark Durkin, Minister for Environment in Northern Ireland and Joe Mahon of Lesser Spotted Ulster TV fame.
Sterling work has been ongoing in the town in recent months to ensure Carrick put its best foot forward and being runner up to Maynooth in the Large Town category was no mean achievement for Carrick. Being invited to participate in such a prestigious competition is an acknowledgement of high level of performance of our town in the national competition over almost three decades. The town has never looked as good and the community at large, in conjunction with the local Tidy Town Committee and the local authority can be proud of their efforts this year. A spokesperson for the local Tidy Town Committee stated that much work was in progress during the May adjudication for Best kept Towns but the main event for Carrick is our own national Tidy Town competition and the main objective is to retain the very difficult task of gold medal status in this years competition. The second adjudication in this year’s national competition takes place in about three weeks and everyone is asked to pull out all the stops to have the town looking its very best for the next six weeks or so. Residential areas and businesses are asked to keep on top of litter, paint any outstanding eyesores and, most importantly, with a huge emphasis in this years competition on tidiness, keep everything looking pristine and clean. Another positive outcome to emerge out of the Belfast visit was the fact that delegates spoke to Joe Mahon who was persuaded to do a TV programme on Carrick sometime in the near future and he spoke very highly of the town at the awards ceremony, mentioning that he had stayed there on occasion. Finally, let’s all keep our shoulder to the wheel and ensure Carrick takes home that gold medal in September.