Communities battle for Tidy Towns title

Tidy Towns judges will visit Collie and West Arthur sometime in June or July as both communities were among the 32 entrants for this year's Tidy Towns Sustainable Community awards. Photo: Shannon Wood
Tidy Towns judges will visit Collie and West Arthur sometime in June or July as both communities were among the 32 entrants for this year's Tidy Towns Sustainable Community awards. Photo: Shannon Wood

Collie and West Arthur will be competing to take out the annual Tidy Towns competition this year after both communities were among the 32 entries for 2018.

The system of judging has changed this year to do away with regional judging, but Collie Tidy Towns Committee chairperson Nola Green said the town should score well.

"We were state finalists in the general appearance section last year, and in two sections the year before," she said.

"With Council being recognised with a Heritage Award this year, and the re-opening of the Museum involving a lot of hard work, we have much to report in the Heritage and Culture section.

"We have had two big litter pick-ups with strong support from the community and the Rotary Club, and the newly formed Friends of the River group is doing revegetation.

"Our schools have some really good programmes going too, in recycling, waste management and environmental efforts.

"It is good to see that the Collie community is continuing to care for the town and the environment."

Collie has a strong history in the competition, having won the national title in 2006, and the state titles in 2003 and 2005.

However the town will be facing stiff competition from West Arthur, who won the state title in 2011 and was one of the finallists in last year’s competition.

Shire of West Arthur president Ray Harrington said entering the competition would allow the West Arthur region to show off the projects they’ve been undertaking.

“Entering the Tidy Towns competition allows us to showcase what we do here in West Arthur,” he said.

“It might surprise people that we’re not just a rates, roads and rubbish shire. We just recently had a really successful Sheepfest that saw more than 1000 people visit Darkan.”

Cr Harrington said West Arthur was quietly confident of being recognised for their achievements in several of the competition’s categories.

Keep Australia Beautiful Council chairman Michael Aspinall said the competition aims to recognise the contributions communities have made to their heritage and environment.

“The Tidy Towns awards recognise community efforts in areas such as litter management, heritage, conservation and environmental sustainability,” he said.

“Over the years, these awards have brought communities together to achieve common outcomes that benefit the environment, and this year’s entrants further demonstrate this.”

The communities have until June 1 to finalise their entries and judges will visit all the entrants by the end of July, before finallists are announced in August.