Derry & Strabane Council ‘s Chief Executive , Mr. John Kelpie, has welcomed praise from various agencies for the city’s high standard of cleanliness.
Mr. Kelpie was speaking after the issue was highlighted by Sinn Fein Councillor Maoliosa McHugh at the council’s Governance and Strategic Planning Committee.
Colr. McHugh said that the Chief Executive of the Northern Ireland Local Government Association, Derek McCallan, had recently complimented the local authority on how clean the city of Derry was.
Colr. McHugh said it was important to recognise the efficiency of the council staff in terms of how they maintain the area.
Mr. Kelpie said that there had been other positive comments as well regarding the aesthetic of the city and region.
“They are not comments that are out of kilter,” he maintained.
“The quality of grounds maintenance and the reduction in litter has been noticed by all external agencies who monitor. We can always do better, but the steady and rapid improvement has been recognised.”
Mr. Kelpie also pointed out that the city had performed extremely well in the ‘Ulster in Bloom’ taking first place in the city category.
The city also claimed the ‘Best Station’ title, which went to Foyle Street Bus Station.
Derry is now set to take part in the Royal Horticultural Society Britain in Bloom competition on October 14th.
UUP Councillor Derek Hussey said he looked forward to Strabane. Castlederg and other smaller areas achieving similar success in the future, prompting DUP Councillor Thomas Kerrigan to add: “That’s a clean sweep!”
Independent councillor Darren O’Reilly, meanwhile, said that unfortunately there were still some areas of the city where the environmental situation was in need of attention, with residents being affected by fly tipping, adding that this needed to be addressed.