'I SEE it as a reward for Blackrock rather than for myself,' said Larry Magnier after he was presented with a Coastcare Merit Award for his work with Blackrock Tidy Towns.
Larry, who received his award at the annual An Taisce Clean Coasts Symposium on Friday, was anxious to emphasis that even though he had received the award on a personal basis, he was doing so on behalf of Blackrock Tidy Towns and all those who contributed to the work.
He was presented with the award by Minister Fergus O'Dowd at the annual awards ceremony at the Royal College of Physicians.
'Clean Coasts engages people in protecting our beaches seas and marine life for future generations, and Larry has proved himself to be at the vanguard of this effort,' said Minister O'Dowd. 'He has been a long-term supporter of the Clean Coasts programme and with works very closely with Mary Murtagh at Louth County Council in organising clean-up and skips to keep Blackrock's coastline sparkling.'
'There are 285 Coastcare Groups in the country, which puts Blackrock's fantastic efforts into perspective. Larry, and the whole Tidy Towns group should be incredibly proud of the impact that they have made.'
Speaking to The Argus on Monday, Larry paid tribute to all those who work to look after Blackrock's coastline from The Loakers to The Fane estuary.
'We have a very good team of Tidy Towns and community employment scheme and we work closely with the Probation Service and Louth County Council to keep the coastline tidy and to highlight environmental and ecological issues,' he said.
In addition to the litter patrols, which take place on the main beach three times a day, the committee have erected information signs about the coast, installed a telescope so people can observe the wading birds, provided washing facilities at the beach and installed litter bins in conjunction with Louth County Council.
The Clean Coasts Programme is operated by the Environmental Education Unit of An Taisce and is supported by the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government, Coca- Cola and Fáilte Ireland.