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Nov 2017 right left


Storytelling by the Fire

Friday 3rd November
Florence Court
Adult £15

Autumn Garden Walk

Saturday 4th November
Mount Stewart
Adult £10, Child £5

Jo’s Walks — The building of Murlough: Part 1

Saturday 4th November
Murlough NNR, Keel Point, Dundrum entrance
No Charge, Donations Welcome


Changing Landscapes: Protecting the environment in a new Europe

Monday 6th November
Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh

Heritage Angel Awards 2017 – Featuring ‘Heritage in Song’!

Tuesday 7th November
Grand Opera House, Belfast BT12 4GN

ESRC Festival of Social Science – SMEs meeting the climate change challenge

Tuesday 7th November
110 Victoria Street, Belfast BT1 3GN
See website for details


Key issues for energy policy in Northern Ireland: security of supply, the single energy market and the future for renewables

Thursday 9th November
TBC, Belfast
See website for details

The Future of the UK Environment: delivering health and wellbeing over the next 25 years

Thursday 9th November
Aston University, Birmingham
See website for details


BTO NI Conference

Saturday 11th November
Lough Neagh Discovery Centre
see above

Path Maintenance & Scrub Control

Sunday 12th November
Bog Meadows Nature Reserve Belfast


How GDPR will impact your organisation

Friday 17th November
Rural Community Network, 38a Oldtown Street, Cookstown, Co. Tyrone BT80 8EF

Innovative Learning using GIS, ICT and Fieldwork

Saturday 18th November
Tollymore Field Studies Centre
£45 including lunch

Have a go: Dry Stone Walling

Saturday 18th November
Strangford Lough
No Charge, Donations Welcome

Creative Writing Workshop

Saturday 18th November
Mount Stewart

Family Festive Film Fun

Saturday 18th November
Rowallane Garden
Normal Admission, Members Free


UK Farming and the Environment Post–Brexit

Tuesday 21st November
TBC, Central London
See website for details

BRICK Workshop 33, Hillsborough Castle

Tuesday 21st November
Hillsborough Castle
£19, bursaries available


ASCENT Workshop

Thursday 23rd November
Tollymore National Outdoor Centre, 32 Hilltown Road, Bryansford, Newcastle


NIEA Conference on Water Framework Directive – Future Partnerships

Saturday 25th November
College of Agriculture Food & Rural Enterprise (CAFRE), Greenmount Campus, 45 Tirgracy Road, Antrim BT41 4PS


Saturday 25th November
Castle Ward
Normal Admission, Members Free

Hedge Maintenance

Sunday 26th November
Gilford Castle, Gilford Co Armagh

World Forum on Natural Capital 2017

Monday 27th November
Edinburgh International Conference Centre, Edinburgh
See website for details


Local Nature Reserve – Facelift 19 September 2017

A breath of fresh air for Local Nature Reserve


Monkstown Wood, in the historic County Antrim village of the same name, is set for a facelift.

This urban woodland has received a funding injection of £65,000, made up of £20,000 from Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council and almost £45,000 from Biffa Award; a multi–million–pound fund that helps to build communities and transform lives through awarding grants to community and environmental projects across the UK, as part of the Landfill Communities Fund.

Cared for by the Woodland Trust, the wood is described by The Independent as “a small gem wedged between industrial buildings and a river”.  

The river is the glorious Three Mile Water and the gem has the added advantage of linking with the Newtownabbey Way, a popular walking/cycling path that runs from Newtownabbey to the shores of Belfast Lough. 

Some 17 years ago, the conservation charity planted thousands of native trees here – a flourishing and towering mix of oak, rowan, alder and wild cherry. And more recently Monkstown Wood was declared a Local Nature Reserve in recognition of its importance to people and wildlife.

Rosie Irwin is the Woodland Trust’s contracts manager and said: “This wood is already well used by local people and groups, from dog walkers to anglers. But, with the forthcoming improvements, we want to put Monkstown firmly on the map. We want it to become a favourite with everyone – nature lovers and visitors from further afield.”
The transformation will get underway this September, with works including improved access, new and improved pathways, quaint stone walls, way–markers, benches and interpretation boards. 

The new pathways will take walkers a step closer to nature: one route will provide access to an adjacent council–owned wildflower meadow, while another will offer a closer look at the Three Mile Water.

Rosie continued: “The Three Mile Water Conservation & Angling Association have carried out extensive wildlife surveys of the important river corridor. They’ve worked tirelessly for years to improve the river quality – partly for the population of trout and salmon, but with other wildlife benefiting too. Kingfishers, dippers, otters and Daubenton’s bats are just some of the creatures spotted.”

Gillian French, Biffa Award Head of Grants, added: “This urban woodland is a stunning green space loved by the local community. Biffa Award are proud that with Landfill Communities Funding we are able to support this ambitious project and create an even better space that will attract visitors to travel to Monkstown.”

Monkstown Wood can be accessed via Monkstown Road, just off the Doagh Road, Newtownabbey. It will officially show off its new look next spring.

To find out more search for Monkstown Wood online at