Catchment News

Loughrea – showing what Tidy Towns can do to enhance their local environment

Loughrea Lake has been awarded a Blue Flag every year since the inception of the award. It is the only inland waterway in Ireland to have done so. Tidy Towns Volunteers, local residents, and Galway County Council are largely responsible for the perfect condition of the lake and its environs.

Local Tidy Town volunteers organised a number of events in late 2017 to help look after their town and lake.

A Coca Cola Clean Coasts clean up of the lake shore took place on Wednesday October 25th 2017. Tidy Towns volunteers, residents, and over thirty Transition Year Students and their teacher from the local St. Brigid’s College collected sixteen bags of litter all along the shore. Catherine Seale, Community Water Officer, spoke to the pupils about the importance of keeping the lake litter free.  Caitríona Cunningham, the local Clean Coast Officer, helped organise the event.

Local primary school children got certificates for entering a ‘Bird Survey’ competition on the same day. They had watched out for and recorded any birds observed in the vicinity of the lake or elsewhere in the town as they enjoyed their summer break from school. The children also got some spring bulbs to plant.  Members of Loughrea Tidy Towns, Catherine Seale and Mr. P.J.McDonnell of “Loughrea Nature Watch” attended the event. They encouraged young people to look out for and care for all wildlife in the area.

Loughrea Tidy Towns are planning similar events for 2018.

For details, see


Who is involved?

Quite simply, everyone in Ireland has a role to play. This can be from something as simple as making sure you don’t pollute your local stream, or a local community working together to establish a Rivers Trust to enhance the rivers and lakes in their area, to a Government Department or Agency helping a Minister implement a new policy to help protect and enhance all our water bodies.

This website has been developed and is maintained by the Environmental Protection Agency, and is a collaboration between the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Local Authority Waters Programme.


Local Authority Waters Programme

The Local Authority Waters Programme coordinates the efforts of local authorities and other public bodies in the implementation of the River Basin Management Plan, and supports local community and stakeholder involvement in managing our natural waters, for everyone’s benefit.


Environmental Protection Agency

The EPA is responsible for coordinating the monitoring, assessment and reporting on the status of our 4,842 water bodies, looking at trends and changes, determining which waterbodies are at risk and what could be causing this, and drafting environmental objectives for each.


Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage

The Department is responsible for making sure that the right policies, regulations and resources are in place to implement the Water Framework Directive, and developing a River Basin Management Plan and Programme of Measures to protect and restore our waters.