Merville named ‘Best Kept’ area

Pictured at the 2013 Best Kept Towns, Villages & Housing Area Awards are (l-r) Doreen Muskett MBE, NIAC, Patricia Pepper, Dr Mark Hammond, NI Environment Agency, Mayor Fraser Agnew, Olive Rodgers and Sally Liya. Pic by Brian Thompson/Press Eye
Pictured at the 2013 Best Kept Towns, Villages & Housing Area Awards are (l-r) Doreen Muskett MBE, NIAC, Patricia Pepper, Dr Mark Hammond, NI Environment Agency, Mayor Fraser Agnew, Olive Rodgers and Sally Liya. Pic by Brian Thompson/Press Eye

Merville Garden Village has been named the Best Kept Large Housing Area in Northern Ireland.

Merville, which picked up the coveted title at the 2013 Northern Ireland Amenity Council (NIAC) Best Kept Awards, was praised by organisers for the community participation that makes it “one of the most cared-for and attractive places in the province.”

Established in the 1950s, the NIAC Best Kept Awards have commended thousands of towns, villages, housing areas, schools and healthcare facilities on their work to improve the environment.

Doreen Muskett MBE, Chairman of NIAC commented: “Merville Garden Village is a very deserving recipient of a 2013 Best Kept Award. The awards were established six decades ago to reward communities that maintain and enhance their surroundings, to protect our diverse natural and built heritage and make Northern Ireland a great place to live and visit. We would like to congratulate all of this year’s winners for doing just that.”

NIAC judges participating towns, villages and housing areas on their green activities, including planted areas, biodiversity projects and recycling schemes. The general tidiness and cleanliness of entries, and community involvement, score highly in the judging process.

Winning towns, villages and housing areas were presented with a Best Kept sign, and a monetary donation towards their environmental endeavours.

Welcoming the local success, Cllr Thomas Hogg praised Merville Residents’ Association, Ulster Garden Villages, council staff and all the volunteers who dedicate their time and effort to maintaining the unique character of the conservation area.