Published On: March 18th, 2021

Keep Australia Beautiful NSW (KAB NSW) has announced the 2020 Overall Winner of the illustrious Sustainable Communities – Tidy Towns Awards on Saturday 13 March 2021, during a dinner in Murrurundi, NSW.

The award was presented to Albury, qualifying the town to represent NSW in the National Keep Australia Beautiful Sustainable Communities – Tidy Towns Awards.

Albury also won the Waste Less, Recycle More Waste Minimisation Award, sponsored by NSW EPA; the Renewable Energy Award; the Recycled Organics Award; and the Overall Population (Category E: 20,000+) Award; and were Highly Commended in the Community Spirit and Inclusion Award.

The Awards dinner – hosted by KAB NSW and the 2019 winner, Murrurundi in the Upper Hunter– was held at the White Hart Hotel. It followed a program of local tours, category award announcements and case studies of inspiring projects from Sustainable Communities – Tidy Towns entrants.

The Sustainable Communities – Tidy Towns program recognises and rewards the accomplishments of regional councils and their communities, many of whom are volunteers actively working towards making their regional communities a prime model for sustainable practices.

KAB NSW CEO, Val Southam, emphasised the importance and relevance of this program, which has been running since 1981.

“The COVID-19 pandemic threw the world population into turmoil. All Australians felt the devastation of a world pandemic, which was felt more acutely in regional areas, especially following the devasting 2019 bushfires.

“Sustainable Communities – Tidy Towns is about more than just receiving or giving accolades. It is a fantastic opportunity for towns to show their resilience, their care for the community and land, and their ingenuity in the way they overcome obstacles – be it social, environmental or relating to sustainability.”

Ms Southam sees these tireless community efforts as inspiring and great examples of community spirit in the bush.

“Every year, we receive entries of very high quality and we always look forward to seeing how communities deal with their local environmental and social challenges.”

Ms Southam added that the awards are supported annually by the NSW EPA and the Return and Earn Container Recycling Scheme.

“All category finalists are to be commended for their efforts, but there can only be one Sustainable Communities – Tidy Towns Overall Winner,” said Ms Southam.

Doug MacDonald, KABNSW Sustainable Communities – Tidy Towns on ground assessor said that the winner of the Overall Award has demonstrated all key values of the Awards program across the width and breadth of the community.

“Albury City is forthright in stating that it has a ‘two city, one community’ culture,” said Mr MacDonald.

“There is strong evidence of proactive engagement by Council with the community, and a comfortable willingness of the community to ‘have their say’ in decision making.”

For a a full list of Winners and Highly Commended, click here.