Straffan was awarded the highest score of any town or village in Kildare in the 2014 Tidy Town’s awards announced yesterday morning, Monday, September 8.
The north Kildare village was awarded 313 out of a possible 450 points. To put this in context, the national winners got 320 points.
Straffan was one of four Kildare urban centres to earn more than 300 points.
The others were Kill (305), Rathangan (304) and Naas (306).
Straffan scored well in all categories except in Sustainable Waste and Resource Management, getting only 13 out of 50 points on offer - and the adjudicators have admitted that this category now contributes more points towards the overall score as a way of highlighting its importance.
Elsewhere however, they admired Straffan’s ‘Adopt and Area’, the fact that local houses appear to be very well kept, and that some areas, such as approach roads are “exceptional”.
The adjudicators coclude that the “The wall opposite the K Club grounds is in need of repair” but complement locals on the butterfly farm.
Naas, Newbridge score well
Meanwhile, Naas, with its 306 points and Newbridge, with 297, are withing shouting distance of Kildare’s top scorers Straffan (313), and even overall winners, Kilkenny (320) in the Tidy Town’s competition.
The two large towns, Naas and Newbridge, got gold and silver medals respectively in their categories. Naas came second in thec ounty.
Naas scored particularly well in Built Environment and Streetscape and in Landscaping and Open Spaces - although their score in Sustainable Waste and Resource Management let them down with 14 out of 50.
Meanwhile Newbridge was commended for a high level of Community Involvement & Planning and rewarded with a 54 out of 60 mark, the highest in the county. Adjudicators said it was “impressive”.
Small towns hold their own
While Kildare’s larger towns were blazing a trail in the 2014 Tidy Town’s competitions, smaller towns were also performing very well.
Kildare’s top prize went to Straffan, at 313 points, but Kill (305), Rathangan (304) and Maynooth (299) all did well.
Community Involvement & Planning impressed judges in Maynooth and Rathangan with 52 out of 60.
However, continuing a theme experienced overall, all of them suffered in the Sustainable Waste and Resource Management section, scoring 14, 18 and 15 respectively.
Adjudicators were particularly impressed with the old campus in Maynooth and with the William Byrne Heather Garden and Maura Laverty memorial gardens in Rathangan.