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Wednesday 27 July 2016

Just one point kept Blackrock from Best Kept Small Town title

Published 19/07/2014 | 12:00

Blackrock has been pipped by a single point by Hillsborough, Co. Down, for the award for Ireland's Best Kept Small Town 2014.

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Blackrock has been pipped by a single point by Hillsborough, Co. Down, for the award for Ireland's Best Kept Small Town 2014.

The awards were presented aboard the S.S. Nomadic in the Titanic Centre in Belfast. Blackrock received 215 points out of 250, while Hillsborough got 216. Former national Tidy Towns winner Aughrim, Co. Wicklow, got 206 points.

'This is an amazing achievement for Blackrock,' said Tidy Towns chairman John Horan. 'Never in our wildest dreams would we have expected to come so close to Hillsborough and it's a tremendous tribute to the whole community in Blackrock to have brought the village up to these standards.'

Judges visited the village twice during May. Adjudication covered seven different categories, with Blackrock beating Hillsborough by one point in one category and equalling them in five others. However in the 'Presentation of Residential Areas and Private Frontages' category Hillsborough beat Blackrock by two points giving them the award.

The adjudication report noted that 'Unfortunately boundary walls and fences in some areas looked shabby. Weedy kerbs were noted here and there in some estates'.

The Tidy Towns were already aware that this was an area where improvements were possible, and indeed had written to residents in the relevant locations earlier in the year on the matter. The report, however, is overwhelmingly positive, and is now available on blackrockvillage.ie.

The grass verges on the approaches to the village, so meticulously maintained by the Community Employment Scheme, were singled out for praise.

'Once again we want to thank everybody who has contributed to this wonderful achievement for the village' said Mr. Horan. 'All our volunteers, the C.E. and Tús Schemes, the Probation Service, RehabCare, the residents associations and the business community. This is something for which every single person in the village can feel proud', he said.

The Argus

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