The President has praised Listowel’s sense of community in winning the National Tidy Towns Competition.
Michael D Higgins was taking part in celebrations to honour Listowel’s achievement.
President Higgins and his wife Sabina were welcomed in The Square, Listowel this afternoon by the Presentation School Band and received a guard of honour from the Girl Guides, Brownies and Ladybirds.
Scoil Réalt na Maidine choir also performed.
Officials from the Department of Rural and Communtiy Development and Kerry County Council greeted him as well as chair of Listowel Tidy Towns Committee Julie Gleeson, council Cathaoirleach Norma Foley and Listowel Cathaoirleach Mike Kennelly.
The President gave an address in St John’s Theatre where he said initiatives such as the Tidy Towns represented a better version of Irishness than the individualism championed during the Celtic Tiger era.
He paid tributed to Mary O’Hanlon who’s been a member of the tidy towns group for over 25 years.
He praised Listowel Tidy Towns’ dawn crew dedicated to early morning clean ups and stressed the importance of taking part.
Later the President unveiled a plaque by stonemason Darren Enright in The Square and then greeted guests in Listowel Writers’ Museum.