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Roads out of Dublin airport the dirtiest in the country say An Taisce report

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Rubbish on Dorset Street

Rubbish on Dorset Street

Rubbish on Dorset Street

WELCOME to Dublin. Please excuse the litter in our dirty old town.

The capital's north inner city and the approach roads around Dublin Airport -- the first places glimpsed by most tourists -- are officially the dirtiest places in the country.

While O'Connell Street, Dublin's main thoroughfare, might be clean, its side streets provide a disappointing eyesore of "constant litter" for thousands of tourists every day.

The findings are contained in the latest nationwide name and shame litter league survey to be published later today.

Dublin's litter-strewn north inner city is the worst area nationally for rubbish, closely followed by the approach roads around the country's biggest airport.

Blackspots

They are now ranked as being the only major litter blackspots in the country. Tipperary town, Portlaoise, Navan, Maynooth, Limerick city, Cork city and Monaghan town were rated as moderately littered.

The remaining 32 towns were found to be either clean to "European norms", or even cleaner.

The Dublin north inner city is being neglected by Dublin City Council in favour of high- profile spots such as Grafton Street and O'Connell Street, according to the Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL) organisation, which is part-sponsored by the Department of the Environment.

An Taisce, which carried out the survey for IBAL, criticised several north inner city areas which were heavily littered last year as being "in an even worse state in 2012".

These included North Strand, Summerhill, and the revamped Spencer Dock area.

"Dublin City Council has done a sterling job in improving year-on-year the high-profile tourist parts of Dublin city centre," said IBAL chairman Tom Cavanagh.

"Unfortunately, you don't have to venture far from O'Connell Street to be confronted with constant litter, dog fouling and neglect. These include areas such as the spectacular Docklands development. The business people and residents of these areas deserve better from their authority.

"Similarly, Cork's city centre, which is now exceptionally clean, is in stark contrast to other areas, mainly north of the river," he added.

More than half of all overseas visitors to this country come through Dublin Airport.

While the grounds of Dublin Airport were found to be immaculate, the roads surrounding it were spoiled by dumping, casual litter and "all manner of rubbish".

However, a record three-quarters of the 42 towns and cities surveyed were deemed to be clean. Cavan was judged Ireland's cleanest town, one of 18 to be rated "cleaner than European norms".

Irish Independent