There were no changes at the top of the Tidy Towns competition in the county this year with the top three remaining as Letterkenny, Glenties and Malin.
Letterkenny took a further step towards the Holy Grail of a National title by gaining two points on last year’s score retained its place as the county’s tidiest town. The total of 306 left the gateway town just four points behind the overall winner Killarney and just two behind the national winner in its population category, Kilkenny.
The town also attained the top score in the north west region and won the national Notice Nature Biodiversity Award.
Carrigart won the Galthacht award while Letterkenny and Glenties picked up a gold medal award in their population categories. Malin picked up a silver medal while Raphoe and Buncrana collected bronze medal awards. Glenties improved by one point on last year with 302 while Malin also increased its score by a single point to.
Doochary topped category A in the county with 285 points, while Malin was the best Donegal town in category B and Glenties was the best category C town. Donegal Town beat Ballybofey and Stranorlar to be the best of the two category D towns in the county with 267 points and Buncrana finished with 287 points as the only category E town in Donegal.
An endeavour award went to Maghery for its improvement of 8% on last year which left it with a score of 242.
The lowest scoring town in the county was Manorcunningham with 188 points. The Tidy Towns committee in Letterkenny saw the improvements made in recent years maintained as they achieved the same score as last year in seven of the ten categories. Two points were gained in waste minimisation and landscaping categories while a point was dropped from the litter control category.
The judges praised the level of organisation shown by the Tidy Towns committee saying the various campaigns run have worked. The committee has shown an admirable approach to co-operation and involvement, the judges said.
Particular praise was lavished on how the town’s roundabouts have been kept with the adjudication stating: “If this competition were to be judged on the imaginative treatment of roundabouts only then Letterkenny would be Champions League standard each year.”
Deputy mayor of Letterkenny, Cllr. Jimmy Kavanagh, said the town is now tantalisingly close to the top award. “The incentive is there now to keep going and get the few extra points needed to top the category and win the overall award. It’s a great effort on behalf of the committee and everyone involved should be very very proud of what they have achieved. Even to win the county award is a great achievement for such a large town.”