Ken Curtin, Ruth Ring, Hendrick Verwey and Jim O'Rourke from Cobh pictured at the Cork County Council Litter Challenge Awards 2017 at County Hall Photography by Gerard McCarthy

The East Cork village were announced Best Improver 2017, and were also outright winners in category 2B at a ceremony held in County Hall last Thursday night 14 September.
Also on the night Youghal received a valued participant award of €200, with the towns of Cobh, Midleton and Fermoy receiving certificates in recognition of their achievements.
For the past 21 years communities and tidy town groups across the county have competed in the anti-litter challenge.
Unlike the National Tidy Towns, the sole purpose of this competition is purely on keeping our communities litter free.
Over 100 communities entered the annual league on a level playing field, with 16 communities selected for various awards.
Mayor of Cork County Declan Hurley said the competition is extremely competitive with many towns and villages showing a vibrant and caring community spirit.
“It is inspiring to see communities come together year after year to tackle this challenge and the results are increasingly impressive. This year, for example, certain villages were awarded maximum scores during a judging period, which means that not one single piece of litter was found during the visit. This takes a massive community effort to achieve.”
Our culture of throwaway consumerism is fuelling a litter problem across the county that is costing the local authority almost €4million annually.
Cork county Council spent in excess of €3.6 million on litter management and street cleaning in 2016.
Money that could have been invested on our failing roads infrastructure, housing, and playgrounds.
Margaret Searson from the Carrigtwohill Tidy Towns group said they were “absolutely thrilled” with their win.
“It’s down to a dedicated team of Tidy Towner’s as well as residents associations, Fas and tus workers. We went from the bottom to the top, it’s really satisfying.”
The Tidy Towns Chairwoman said we are suffering a litter epidemic that will only be solved by a change in public attitudes.
Over 1,000 fly-tipping complaints were reported across Cork County in the first 6 months of 2017 which resulted in 984 clean up jobs.
The figure is almost double the amount of complaints registered with the local authority for the entirety of 2016.

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