Tuesday 20 February 2018

Busy bees win pollinator award for Carrigaline

Conor Nelligan, County Heritage Officer

In the National TidyTowns Awards, held on Monday September 25, Carrigaline won the Pollinator Award for large towns in the South Mid-West Region, which comes as great news for the County of Cork.

The Local Authority Pollinator Award aims to encourage TidyTowns groups to implement pollinator friendly actions in their towns and villages as part of the TidyTowns competition. It supports the "All Ireland Pollinator Plan" (see and is co-ordinated and sponsored by the Heritage Offices & Biodiversity Offices of Local Authorities across Ireland, in partnership with the National Biodiversity Data Centre.

There were over 70 entries in this year's award and being the second year of the Award many had put 12 months' work into their pollinator entries.

Carrigaline Tidy Towns had undertaken some excellent initiatives under their 'Bee Informed' Campaign which set out to adapt the landscape of Carrigaline to support pollination and ensure bee survival, whilst educating the people in the local community as to the importance of bees. This was achieved by the undertaking of a range of different initiatives including wildflower meadows and a very successful project with the local schools. Well done to Carrigaline.

Also on the subject of awards, the Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr Declan Hurley, has welcomed the announcement of six projects from Cork County Council shortlisted for the Chambers Ireland Excellence in Local Government Awards 2017. The projects shortlisted are the Living Space Project Mallow; the website; the Dunmanway Community Garden; the Cork County Council Physicality and Wellbeing Office; Spike Island (Heritage and Built Environment Category) and the Centenary Commemorations in the County of Cork (Commemorations and Centenaries Category).

In welcoming the announcement, Mayor Hurley commented: 'These awards select the very best of local authority projects. To have six selected is a wonderful achievement and recognises the impact of these projects but what is truly making a difference is how these projects are bringing real and meaningful benefits to the people of Cork."

The winners will be announced at the 14th annual awards ceremony on 23rd November at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Dublin. The awards will be presented for excellence in 16 different categories and one local authority will be awarded the overall award and named Local Authority of the Year 2017.

With regard to events, last Friday the County of Cork was a hive of activity due to Culture Night. Featuring over 100 events it was a fantastic occasion and a credit to all of those involved. Many of the organising groups and organisations are active throughout the year, undertaking a range of different cultural and heritage projects and events.

Friday 29th September will see a coming together of many of these groups when they all exhibit under the one roof as part of the 9th Annual Celebrating Cork Past Heritage Exhibition. The exhibition runs from 10am to 6pmand takes place in the Millennium Hall (City Hall), Cork City. The event is open to the public and free of charge - come along to show your support for your local heritage and the community groups that make this heritage their passion.

The following day, Saturday 30th September, will see the launch of a fascinating historical exhibition in Cobh, looking at how life was lived there 100 years ago in 1917, also documenting what was happening on a national and even international scale at the time. The exhibition is being undertaken by the Cork Harbour Island Project group and will run for six weeks in the Cobh Railway Station.

Spike Island in Cork Harbour will also see much heritage interest over the weekend with the hosting of a War of Independence and Aud themed weekend. Over the course of the Saturday and Sunday, the weekend will feature reenactors, autograph books, original artefacts, prisoner lists and much more. Boats will operate at 10:15am, 11am and on the hour until 3pm. Further information can be obtained by visiting

A few days later, on Thursday 5th October, there will be a talk in Kinsale focusing on the Great Famine, organized by the Kinsale History Society. The talk, which takes place in the local Temperance Hall, will be given by Catherine Flanagan and Gerry McCarthy and commences at 8pm.

Also on the same night, this time in Blarney, will be a further fascinating talk entitled 'Cork Women in the Revolutionary Times of 1916 to 1923'. Ms. Anne Twomey of the Shandon Area History Group will discuss the extraordinary women of Cork City and suburbs who took an active part during this very troubled period of our history.

Some of those who will be mentioned include the Wallace sisters of St. Augustine Street, who were members of the Irish Citizen Army; Birdie Conway who was a founder of Cumann na mBan and a President of Shandon Branch and the McSwiney sisters among the many others who undertook important and dangerous assignments. More information is available to view on

Speaking of the 1916 to 1923 period, and indeed the Irish Revolution as a whole, a most wonderful publication has been recently launched by Cork University Press. Titled 'Atlas of the Irish Revolution and containing more than 900 pages, it is the definitive book documenting the defining years of the Irish Nation. The book was launched on September 19th, and is available in all good book shops.

In next week's column we will take a look at some of the key upcoming events for the month of October including a highly anticipated exhibition in Kilmurry opening on October 7th and a fascinating heritage and tourism conference planned for Buttevant on October 14th.


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