TIDY TOWNS HERO AWARD FOR JA­SON!

Bless­ing­ton chair­per­son hon­oured with na­tional ac­co­lade

Wicklow People (West Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - By MYLES BUCHANAN

THE Chair­per­son of Bless­ing­ton Tidy Towns has been crowned the na­tional Su­perValu Tidy Towns Com­mu­nity Hero of 2019.

Ja­son Mul­hall was in at­ten­dance at the Tidy Towns award cer­e­mony in The Helix when the an­nounce­ment was made – much to his sur­prise.

‘I was a bit shocked to be hon­est, but in a good way. I was in­vited along to the awards cer­e­mony as one of 10 nom­i­nees to re­ceive a ‘highly com­mended’ award. I was very sur­prised when they an­nounced I also won the Com­mu­nity Hero Award. I re­gard this prize as be­ing for the whole group. It’s in recog­ni­tion of our hard work­ing com­mit­tee con­sist­ing of eight peo­ple.’

Bless­ing­ton Tidy Towns only re­formed in 2011 and have achieved a re­mark­able 93 points in­crease since the 2012 com­pe­ti­tion.

Now Bless­ing­ton Tidy Towns has its sights on land­ing a bronze medal in 2020 or 2021, while also pre­par­ing for the €5 mil­lion ex­pan­sion of the Bless­ing­ton Green­way.

JA­SON Mul­hall of Bless­ing­ton Tidy Towns is the over­all win­ner of the Su­perValu Tidy Towns Com­mu­nity Hero Award and has ded­i­cated his win to his fel­low vol­un­teers.

Ja­son was one of ten Com­mu­nity Hero nom­i­nees present at Mon­day’s awards cer­e­mony held at The Helix in Dublin wait­ing to re­ceive ‘Highly Com­mended’ awards. He had no idea he was also in line for the full-na­tional award as well.

‘I was a bit shocked to be hon­est, but in a good way. I was in­vited along to the awards cer­e­mony as one of ten nom­i­nees to re­ceive a ‘highly com­mended’ award. I was very sur­prised when they an­nounced I also won the Com­mu­nity Hero Award. I re­gard this prize as be­ing for the whole group. It’s in recog­ni­tion of our hard work­ing com­mit­tee con­sist­ing of eight peo­ple. Re­ally the award is for the whole group.’

Bless­ing­ton Tidy Towns only re­formed in 2011 af­ter a num­ber of years in the wilder­ness, and have been chaired by Ja­son ever since. The newly formed group en­tered their first Tidy Towns com­pe­ti­tion in 2012, fin­ish­ing bot­tom of the pile for the County. Since then they have man­aged to amass an im­pres­sive 93 point in­crease.

‘We were the low­est scor­ing town in the county in 2012 but we have es­tab­lished our­selves now. Our marks have been in­creas­ing con­sid­er­ably year-on-year and I think we are on the cusp of a bronze medal. It might be 2021 by the time we get one, but I would be hope­ful we can achieve that goal over the next year or two. We get good sup­port, though like all com­mu­nity groups we could do with a bit more. Lo­cal busi­nesses are very good to us, es­pe­cially Dan Kenny of Su­perValu. He al­ways sees to be there for us when we need some­thing.’

Judges also seemed im­pressed with the net­work event or­gan­ised by Bless­ing­ton Tidy Towns held in the Avon dur­ing May which fea­tured other Tidy Towns groups from through­out the county.

‘That re­ceived a very favourable re­sponse. Other Tidy Towns groups in­cluded it in their pre­sen­ta­tions and the judges recog­nised our group’s role in ar­rang­ing the con­fer­ence. We have a lot to fo­cus on over the year ahead. Con­struc­tion is due to start on the next phase of the Bless­ing­ton Green­way and we are also look­ing at sus­tain­abil­ity and cli­mate change and the ef­forts which can be made. We pro­vided some re­us­able cups to the com­mu­nity and will be look­ing into other ini­tia­tives like that.’

Ja­son Mul­hall (right) with Dan Kenny of Bless­ing­ton Su­perValu af­ter re­ceiv­ing his Com­mu­nity Hero award.

Ja­son Mul­hall from Bless­ing­ton Tidy Towns.

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