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National judges praise ‘vibrant’ Dumfries

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By Fiona Reid
Dumfries and West
National judges praise 'vibrant' Dumfries

'A VIBRANT town' is how Beautiful Scotland judges have described Dumfries — awarding its first ever gold award.

And after securing the success, The People’s Project say they hope this might mark the start of a change in how the town and the region is seen by its own population.

Hailing the outcome, Mark Jardine from the project said: “This perhaps has proved that we are doing better than a lot of people think that we’re doing.

“It’s easy to criticise, but I think we need to stop the knocking and do more of the praising and saying to people they’re doing a good job. It might just rub off and make people start realising that things are happening.”

Judges visited the town on August 10 as part of the national competition.

And Mark said: “One of the things that the judges said to me when we were walking down the High Street is that they could not believe how vibrant the town was.

“They’d visited lots of places, but they said it’s the vibrancy and the number of people about, the number of shops that were open.

“That contradicts what a lot of people were saying.”

Judges considered factors including general cleanliness, floral displays, and people making an effort to maintain properties and premises.

Mark said: “Apart from that it’s things like public art, the history of the town, does the town make the , dumfries, gold, the people’s project, mark jardinemost of it, and I think we do quite well but we could do better.

“And they love looking at parks, and in regards to parks they were very impressed with Dock Park.”

Thirteen category winners were presented at the ceremony in Dunfermline last Thursday, with The People’s Project collecting gold in the large town section.

Meanwhile, Brighten up Kirkconnel took a silver gilt medal certificate in the small village category and the Jim Murdie Trophy for Sustainability, while Brighten up Sanquhar took silver gilt.

Keep Scotland Beautiful operations director Carole Noble said: “Dumfries and Galloway volunteers have worked tirelessly to ensure that the local spaces and places that they treasure are maintained to excellent standards.

“I would like to commend them on their efforts.”

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