Trim named Ireland's cleanest town


Trim has been named Ireland’s cleanest town in a survey of litter levels in 53 towns and cities.

The Co Meath medieval town was followed by Swords, Co Dublin and Killarney, Co Kerry, in second and third place.

The Irish Business Against Litter (Ibal) group announced the results of its 2011 survey today at an event in Dublin.

It is the first time Trim has won the Ibal Litter League award, having been adjudged litter free since 2005.

Nine towns were given a ‘sustained excellence’ award by the business group, for remaining litter free for five years in a row. The others were Killarney, Cavan, Youghal, Fermoy, Castlebar, Ballina, Monaghan and Dundalk.

Dublin’s north inner-city and Knocknaheeny in Cork were named as litter blackspots. Cork city, Mallow, Navan, Gorey, Carlow, Limerick city, Dublin airport environs, Tuam and Tallaght were in the ‘moderately littered’ category.

An Taisce, which conducts the litter surveys, said all sites surveyed in Trim got the top litter grade.

“The approach routes were particularly well presented and this very high standard was sustained for all sites surveyed in Trim."

Trim town manager Brian Murphy said it was a “fantastic result” for the town and its people. Some €5 million was borrowed by the town council in 2006 to upgrade the streetscape and pavements. Mr Murphy said this investment, along with increased budgets for street cleaning, had paid off.

The town will receive a number of trees for planting locally, to mark its success in the event. These are provided by the Irish Tree Centre in Cork, which is a member of the litter league.

Criticising the results, the Dublin City Business Improvement District claimed Ibal had presented “misleading and untrue information” on the cleanliness of Dublin city centre and had included residential areas in its survey.

The business body said the results were “deeply misleading” and jeopardised tourism revenues and jobs in the city at “an already vulnerable time”.

Chief executive Richard Guiney said the because of “dramatic media-grabbing statements” such as this, a tourist considering visiting Dublin could be misled into believing that Dublin city was ‘dirty’ when this was not the case.

“The majority of Dublin’s main tourist areas are recorded as clean. While there are areas outside the Business Improvement District area which are regarded as unclean, we note again that these are mainly in private or residential areas for example, in basements which cleaning organisations cannot access,” Mr Guiney said. “It’s also important to point out that these surveys are a snapshot of a point in time and are not representative of the true situation on the streets.”