THE hard work and community spirit of the volunteers who helped steer Tralee to its second Tidy Towns Gold Medal this summer has been praised by Tralee Town Council.
At Monday's monthly meeting of Tralee Town Council John Griffin, the council officer charged with overseeing Tralee's Tidy Town's effort, delivered a briefing on the county capital's successful 2013 clean up campaign.
Mr Griffin said it was credit to the many volunteers that Tralee had managed to retain it's Gold Medal a task which he said was often harder than winning the title in the first place.
"We had another great year in 2013. To win the gold medal was a great achievement but to hold on to it can be even more difficult. As you reach the higher levels of the competition, where Tralee is now, it keeps getting harder, standards get higher and the competition gets more intense," he said.
Tralee scored an impressive 298 points in this years competition, an increase of four points on last years tally, and has seen it's Tidy Towns score jump by 85 points since 2002.
"The judges couldn't believe the marks had improved in such a short time and he said his visit to Tralee had been a tremendously pleasant surprise," said John Griffin.
Tributes were also paid to the Tidy Tralee Together team and the many volunteers, led by well known local anti litter campaigner Mary O'Brien, who have been out picking the litter off Tralee's streets twice a week for several years.
There were also words off appreciation for the members of the Kerry Islamic Outreach Society, led by some of Kerry General Hospital's most senior consultants, who have become closely involved in the Tidy Tralee effort and who have joined the volunteers' weekly cleanup effort.