Don Conroy picks the winners in Wexford's biodiversity art competition

BY Amy Lewis

Published 09/07/2016 | 00:00

Fixth and sixth class award recipients. Back: Cliona Connolly (Wexford County Council), Nicholas Egan, Cllr Paddy Kavanagh and artist Don Conroy. Front: Amy Barrett (Shielbaggan NS), Wiktoria Zaremba (Our Lady of Lourdes, Bunclody), Laura Ciocan (Scoil Naomh Maodhóg, Ferns) and Kate Freeman (Oylegate NS)
Fixth and sixth class award recipients. Back: Cliona Connolly (Wexford County Council), Nicholas Egan, Cllr Paddy Kavanagh and artist Don Conroy. Front: Amy Barrett (Shielbaggan NS), Wiktoria Zaremba (Our Lady of Lourdes, Bunclody), Laura Ciocan (Scoil Naomh Maodhóg, Ferns) and Kate Freeman (Oylegate NS)
Overall winners Kate Doyle of Ballyduff NS (primary school winner), Cllr Paddy Kavanagh and Finn O'Driscoll of St Peter's College (secondary school winner).
Back: Cliona Connolly (Wexford County Council), Nicholas Egan, Cllr Paddy Kavanagh and artist Don Conroy. Front: Molly Nolan (Kilmyshall NS), Orlaith Nic Gabhainn (Adamstown NS), Kate Doyle (Monageer NS), Alex Moorehead (Our Lady of Lourdes, Bunclody), Estelle Byrne (Ballythomas NS), Erin White (Oylegate NS),Emily Cody (St Joseph's NS, New Ross), Lily Murphy (St Colman's NS, Ballindaggin) and Michael Cowman (Kilmyshall NS).
The secondary school winners. Back: Cliona Connolly (Wexford County Council), Nicholas Egan, Billy Ryan (St Peter's College), Conor Hillis (St Peter's College), Cllr Paddy Kavanagh, Derek Dodebier (St Peter's College), artist Don Conroy and Marcus Harrington (St Peter's College). Front: Amy Boylan (Gorey Community School), Ian Corrigan (St Peter's College), Matthew Burke (St Peter's College), Miss Doyle representing Tanisha Murphy (Kennedy College, New Ross), Cian Bates (St Peter's College) and Amanda Dobre (Gorey Community School).
The community group winners with Cliona Connolly (Wexford County Council), Cllr Paddy Kavanagh, Don Conroy, Aidan Power of Wexford Local Development and Ray Flynn of Rosslare Tidy Towns.
The third and fourth class awards. Back: Cliona Connolly (Wexford County Council), Nicholas Egan, Cllr Paddy Kavanagh and artist Don Conroy. Front: Erin Doyle (Ballyduff NS), Kaylen Sunderland (Our Lady of Lourdes, Bunclody), Leanne Mahon (Our Lady of Lourdes, Bunclody), Chafia Flynn (Our Lady of Lourdes, Bunclody), Aibhe Fortune (Our Lady of Lourdes, Bunclody), Amy Bolger (Our Lady of Lourdes, Bunclody) and Zara Morris Keating (Our Lady of Lourdes, Bunclody).
The first and second class winners. Back: Cliona Connolly (Wexford County Council), Nicholas Egan, Cllr Paddy Kavanagh and Don Conroy. Front: Matt Butler (Monageer NS), Tadhg Dunne (Monageer NS), Nicole Kosma (Adamstown NS), Ella Hayden (Oylegate NS), Amelia Swierczynska (Adamstown NS), Elese Doyle (Dallyduff NS) and Corah Molloy Brazil (St Joseph's NS, New Ross).

The late wildlife warden Christopher Wilson was recently honoured through art as this year's County Council Biodiversity Artwork Competition ran with the theme of 'butterflies' in his memory.

Christopher served as warden at Wexford Wildfowl Reserve and was involved in the art competition for many years. Owing to his interest and knowledge of butterflies, a book on the creatures was recently published in his honour.

Young artists from around the county also got involved in keeping Chris's memory alive by recreating the colourful creatures on paper for the competition. Judge Don Conroy was then given the difficult task of choosing just 40 winners from the 1,641 entries.

Speaking at the awards ceremony, Chairman of Wexford County Council Cllr Paddy Kavanagh said that that the aim of the competition was to develop an awareness of 'the importance of biodiversity and to better understand its value to local communities.'

'Butterflies have been around for at least 50 million years they are part of life on earth and an important component of its rich biodiversity. They are indicators of a healthy environment and healthy ecosystems,' he said. 'The artwork displayed here today reminds us all to look after our environment, a precious legacy for the generations to come.'

'We all have a role to play in learning more about biodiversity and protecting the natural heritage of Wexford.'

The overall winner in the primary school category was Kate Doyle from Ballyduff National School, while the overall winner from the secondary school category was Finn O' Driscoll of St Peter's College. The winning artwork will be displayed in County Hall until the end of July.

Prizes were also presented for the Snap into Action Competition, which was open to both schools and community groups. This competition encourages people from all walks of life to take action against litter. St Anne's National School, Rathangan received first prize in the Snap Into Action School Competition and received a cheque for €500.

Cois Barry Community House, Rosslare Strand were presented with first prize in the Snap Into Action Community Group Competition and also received a cheque for €500.

The chairman congratulated all involved and praised the groups for all their voluntary work in keeping Wexford beautiful.

Overall Winner Primary School: Kate Doyle, Ballyduff NS. Overall Winner Secondary School: Finn O'Driscoll, St Peter's College. Junior Infants 1st: Alex Moorhead, Our Lady of Lourdes Primary School. 2nd: Estelle Byrne, Ballythomas National School. 3rd: Erin White, Oylegate National School. HC: Michael Cowman, Kilmyshall National School. Senior Infants 1st: Kate Doyle, Monageer National School. 2nd: Lily Murphy, St Colmans National School. 3rd: Emily Cody, St Josephs National School, New Ross. HC Molly Nolan, Kilmyshall National School and Orlaith Nic Gabhainn, Adamstown National School. 1st and 2nd class. 1st prize: Ella Hayden, Oylegate National School. 2nd prize: Elese Doyle, Ballyduff National School. Joint 3rd prize: Matt Butler, Monageer National School and Tadhg Dunne, Monageer National School. HC: Nicole Kosma, Adamstown National School; Corah Molly Brazil, St Joseph's National School, New Ross; James Flynn Doyle, Monageer National School and Amelia Swierczynska, Adamstown National School. 3rd and 4th class. 1st: Erin Doyle, Ballyduff National School. Joint 2nd prize: Chafia Flynn, Aibhe Fortune and Amy Bolger, all Our Lady of Lourdes. Joint 3rd prize: Kaylen Sunderland, Leanne Mahon and Zara Morris Keating, all Our Lady of Lourdes. Highly Commended: Bruno Dumans, Our Lady of Lourdes and Shannon Griffith Benton, St Fintans National School 5th and 6th class. 1st: Laura Ciocan, Scoil Naomh Maodhog. 2nd: Kate Freeman, Oylegate National School. 3rd: Amy Barrett, Shielbaggen National School. HC: Wiktoria Zaremba and Pauline Szeliga, Our Lady of Lourdes. 1st - 3rd year. 1st: Amanda Dobre, Gorey Community School. 2nd: Amy Boylan, Gorey Community School. 3rd: Cian Bates, St Peter's College. HC: Tanisha Murphy, Kennedy College and Ian Corrigan, St Peter's College. 4th - 6th year. Joint 1st prize: Billy Ryan and Conor Hillis, both St Peter's College. 2nd: Matthew Burke, St Peter's College. 3rd: Derek Dodebier, St Peter's College.

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