A STRONG sense of community pride has earned accolades for Horsham at the Keep Australia Beautiful Australian Tidy Towns Awards.
The finalist for Victoria, Horsham was the joint winner in the environmental education category with eventual Australian Tidy Towns winner Barmera, SA.
Horsham was also highly commended in the environmental sustainability section, in recognition of the achievements of Horsham Urban Landcare Group and the number of community gardens in Horsham.
A further high commendation was awarded to Horsham Agricultural Society president Dalton Cross in the young leaders category.
“One element that is very prominent is the sense of connection in the town: the community gardens that link all the school communities and churches; Horsham Urban Land Care that links businesses and families to spread a message of sustainability while building skills and promoting a waste minimisation; and the Christian Emergency Food Centre which provides food security, dignity, hope and a sense of belonging,” Australian Tidy Towns judge Jill Grant said.
Horsham mayor Pam Clarke said while Horsham had not taken out the highest honour, it was a privilege to be named a finalist.
“We’re walking away inspired and motivated and ready to give the title another shot in 2018. Horsham residents should still be very proud,” she said.
Keep Australia Beautiful’s Val Southam said community projects demonstrated the care and sharing of resources that went into making towns successful and sustainable.
“Horsham is a town of wonderful natural assets and very strong cultural traditions,” she said.
The program received more than 195 applications, with more than 445 category submissions across councils, shires, community groups, schools and individuals.