In addition to the main competition, Special Awards are held each year under TidyTowns which highlight particular local environmental activities. Terms and conditions may differ under each, but in general entry to these competitions is open to all TidyTowns groups and others working in the community to improve their local environment. New this year Waters and Communities Award – Prize Fund €7,000 The Waters and Communities Award is a new category for 2017. It aims to encourage communities to get more involved with their local waterbodies by helping to preserve, promote and fully utilise their local natural heritage. Community groups who have shown an appreciation for their water environment and water heritage in general during 2016 will be considered (examples include: clean ups; provision or upgrading of amenities; support to biodiversity; promotion of fishing; awareness raising; etc.). This award is sponsored by Inland Fisheries Ireland, Waterways Ireland and the Local Authority Waters and Communities Office and is open to all community groups to apply. For more details, including the entry form, see or click ‘Water & Communities Award’ Value Water Award – Irish Water – Prize Fund € 10,000 The Irish Water Value Water Award aims to encourage communities to raise awareness around water conservation and water protection. Small changes to the way water is used in our homes and communal spaces can lead to a significant amount of water saved. Simple but effective measures such as leak detection, installation of rainwater harvesting devices and changed flushing behaviour can conserve precious drinking water and reduce the amount of wastewater produced. Tidy Town groups can lead the way towards responsible water use and sustainable water management in their localities. For example, the use of water butts instead of hosepipes in garden common areas, installation of water efficient appliances and car washing schemes can make a difference to overall water use. The prize fund this year for four Regional winners is:  Best Large Town – €1,000 Best Small Town – €1,000.  There will also be an additional prize of €2,000 for the overall winner of the four regions. For more details, visit or click Irish Water Value Water Award Let’s Get Buzzing – Local Authority Pollinator Award – Prize Fund €9,000 The Local Authority Pollinator Award aims to encourage TidyTowns groups to implement pollinator friendly actions in their towns and villages as part of the TidyTowns competition.  Irish bees, crucial in the pollination of our plants, trees and vegetables, are in decline.  This is because we’ve drastically reduced the areas where they can nest and the amount of food our countryside provides for them.  The aim of the award is to reverse this trend by encouraging TidyTowns groups to take simple measures such as leaving wildflowers to grow along roadsides, field margins, and/or using more pollinator friendly plantings in parks and gardens.  The award supports the All Ireland Pollinator Plan 2015-2020 and is co-ordinated and sponsored by the Heritage Offices & Biodiversity Offices of Local Authorities across Ireland, in partnership with the National Biodiversity Data Centre. There are two award categories: (i)                  Village or Small Town (ii)                Large Town or Urban Centre A prize of €1,000 will be awarded to the four Regional winners in each of the two categories.  Out of these eight regional winners, one overall national winner will receive an additional €1,000. Awards will be given to all categories, subject to satisfactory standard being reached. For more details see or click ‘Let’s Get Buzzing’ Youth Award Prize Fund €5,000 A Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural & Gaeltacht Affairs Award Sponsored by SuperValu The Special Youth Award is a new initiative of the SuperValu TidyTowns competition which aims to celebrate the contribution of young people to TidyTowns activities and to encourage greater youth involvement with TidyTowns groups.  The award is for young people aged under 18 years of age.  Awards will be made at National and Regional level for projects which substantially involve young people, working together with their local TidyTowns group, to deliver benefits to their local community.   Four Regional Award Winners   €1,000 each   There will also be an additional prize of €1,000 for the overall winner of the four regions. For more details see or click ‘Youth Award’ OUR COMMUNITY CLIMATE ACTION AWARD – Prize Fund: €5,000 Sponsored by the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment Climate change presents key challenges for all of us. We must ensure that what we do today does not compromise our environment, but instead enhances it and makes it a place where all generations, current and future, can live in a sustainable way. Through the “Our Community Climate Action Award”, we are aiming to promote leadership in communities in addressing the challenges posed by climate change and to encourage all of the community to take positive action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect their community from the impacts of climate change. This year, we are looking for you to tell us about one key initiative underway in your community which makes a positive contribution to the climate challenge – Our Community Climate Action. The action should be innovative and easily replicated in other local communities. Recognising the key role of the younger generation in the climate challenge, an award is also available this year for a Young Tidy Towns committee on the same theme. The prize fund this year is Best Large Town- €2,225 Best Small Town – €2,225 & one prize of €500 for a youth award.  For more details see or click ‘Community Climate Action Award’ Sustainable Development Award – Prize Fund €5,000 Sponsored by the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment Inclusive communities respect biodiversity, social diversity and most of all our own diversity. We would like you to create a new leisurely walk. The goal for this project is to create a place where people can meet friends, get some light exercise and not have any demands placed on them.  The only equipment required should be comfortable shoes. The walk should be at least 300 metres with items of interest all along the route and a seating area at about 150 metres intervals. The short route and seating areas should allow people of all ages and physical fitness to participate.  The more energetic can do more laps. The €5,000 prize fund will be divided as follows: 1st place €1,000; 2nd place €800; 3rd place €700; and five prizes of €500. 16 Ways to Make Your Neighborhood Safer, Greener & Fun | On the Commons For more details see or click ‘Sustainable Development Award’ Gum Litter Taskforce (GLT) Competition – Prize Fund €5,000 The GLT would like to reward communities that are implementing environmental awareness initiatives to eliminate chewing gum litter in their area. You could win up to €3,000 for your community by answering 7 questions. There are two GLT categories as follows: Category A €2,000 prize fund – Village and Small Town entry Category B €2,000 prize fund – Large Towns and Urban Centre entry There will also be an additional prize of €1,000 for the overall winner of the two categories. For more details see or click ‘Gum Litter Taskforce (GLT)’ Clean Air Award – Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment Prize Fund €3,000 The Clean Air Award aims to encourage communities to promote awareness of the importance of clean air for human health and the environment, and of the interaction between local choices and local air quality. To be in with a chance of winning let us know how your committee has raised awareness of the importance of clean air and of the potential impact that local choices, such as choice of home heating fuel, can have on the air we breathe in our towns and our communities. The overall national winner will receive a €2,000 prize, with 2 national runner-up prizes of €500 each. For more details, including the entry form, see or click ‘Clean Air Award’ SuperValu Diversity Award – Prize Fund €2,000 Sponsored by SuperValu The SuperValu Diversity Award aims to recognise the way TidyTowns committees who include all of their community, on an inter-generational and inter-cultural basis, in the work that they do. This award recognises the benefits that embracing diversity and working across the generations brings to your community.  It rewards the intergenerational and intercultural aspects of your committee.  The strength of a community lies in how it works together to establish a place where all are welcome, where all are encouraged to participate, and where all feel at home.  Strong communities work together to gain the most from what all members of their community have to offer, regardless of age, ethnicity or ability. As our communities become more diverse the need to understand and appreciate other cultures becomes increasingly important. This award is to recognise all that you, as TidyTowns committees, do to encourage involvement from members of your community. For more details see or click ‘Diversity Award’  Waste Prevention Award – Environmental Protection Agency – Prize Fund €2,000 The EPA Waste Prevention Award is to recognise communities that have undertaken activities to prevent waste and use resources efficiently. Any initiatives to reduce: waste, water use, energy use, or use of materials is included; whether by the community, householders, businesses, schools, with your local authority, or other organisations. The overall national winner will receive a €1,000 prize, with 2 national runner-up prizes of €500 each. For more details, see or click ‘Waste Prevention Award’ Can It! 2017 – Alupro Ireland – Prize Fund €2,000 Alupro Ireland (Aluminium Packaging Recycling Organisation) was founded in 2007, to help stimulate awareness and focus the public interest on aluminium packaging recycling and the benefit in protecting our natural resources by recycling our aluminium packaging. Can It! has been running as a successful partnership between Alupro Ireland and the TidyTowns Unit with some wonderful results from schools and community groups around Ireland taking part and working hard to produce some creative artworks from used aluminium cans and foils. We have had all sorts from schools projects to bring bank signage, to windmills, dragons and sharks.  We hope to see many more artworks and ingenious ideas on how to re-use your used aluminium packaging in 2017.   For more details see or click ‘Can It’   Heritage Award – Heritage Council – Prize Fund €1,000 The Heritage Award seeks to recognise those who work to benefit heritage, improve our local environment and involve the community. For more details see or click ‘Heritage Award’ Tree Project Award – Tree Council of Ireland- Prize Fund €1,000 The Tree Project Award recognises the huge impact that properly positioned trees can have in a town or village and the importance of having the right tree in the right place.  It is essential that careful thought is put into not only the planting but also the management of the trees over their life-span. The award rewards the TidyTowns Committee which has demonstrated the highest tree placement and maintenance standards. For more details see or click ‘Tree Project Award’