Ballincollig has been honoured in the Digital Tourism category at the second annual .IE Digital Town Awards.
The result was announced at a virtual awards ceremony in recent days which was attended by Damien English TD, Minister of State for Business, Employment and Retail at the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment.
The .IE Digital Town Awards were established in 2021 by .IE, the managers of Ireland’s trusted online .ie address.
The awards recognise local town and community projects, and people that are using digital innovation, technologies, and digital-first thinking for the betterment of the community.
Ballincollig’s ‘Gunpowder Mills: Mobile Phone App’ entry was commended by judges for its digital pocket tour guide.
The app allows users to explore the ruins of the Ballincollig Gunpowder Mills, which was established in 1794 and which is the single largest industrial archaeological site in Ireland.
Piltown in Co Kilkenny was announced as the overall winner, with the judging panel commending the community for its “extraordinary resolve and determination in putting their town on the digital map.”
The Piltown project has resulted in the creation of a local digital hub and community centre that serves 37 groups in the area.
This year’s awards focused on communities and digital leaders that have adopted new ways of thinking to enhance localities through innovative use of digital tools in the community.
There was a total prize fund of €100,000 across seven award categories, and projects were shortlisted in the categories of digital education, digital tourism, community digital, and digital business.
Three special prizes honouring individuals and communities making significant difference to the digital betterment of local towns were also awarded under the categories of digital rising star, digital changemaker and digital local hero.
Congratulating the high calibre of entries, Mr English said the bar at this year’s competition had been exceptionally high.
“The awards are an important annual event that recognise the remarkable efforts made by our local digital champions who are determined to futureproof the places where they work, rest and play,” Deputy English said.
Commending the winners and those shortlisted, .IE corporate communications manager Oonagh McCutcheon said the awards celebrated a phenomenal level of resilience and spirit of local towns and local communities.
“The purpose of the .IE Digital Town Awards is to shine a light on the digital efforts being made by towns and their people working for the betterment of their localities across the country,” Ms McCutcheon said.
“At .IE, we hope that Ballincollig, and all of our winners and nominees can become an inspiration to other towns and communities around the country and, ultimately, help to breathe new life into local communities through demonstration of novel and innovative ways of using digital tools,” she added.