Catchment News

Celebrate Water Heritage Day – Sunday August 27th 2017

Heritage Week runs from 19th – 27th August 2017 providing opportunities to get outside and discover the wonders of our natural, built and cultural heritage.

Heritage Week allows us take time out with family and friends to visit wild and wonderful places, enjoy traditions and events familiar or new, and make memories that will stand the test of time.

Water Heritage Day on Sunday August 27th will provide an opportunity to celebrate water and what it means to us. We all depend on a clean and plentiful supply of water in our daily lives – it underpins our personal health and well-being and contributes immeasurably to our local and national economies.

Whilst often available in abundance across Ireland, clean, healthy water is a precious and fragile resource that needs our care and attention to protect it for present and future generations.

Many of the beautiful places in Ireland are linked with our rivers, lakes, springs and coasts.  These wild and wonderful places and the wildlife they support provide inspiration and enjoyment for young and old.  There is so much to discover about water as it moves through catchments in rivers, lakes and underground on its journey from source to sea.

On Sunday 27th August take time to explore your local stream, river, lake or beach and join others as we celebrate water during Heritage Week 2017.

The Local Authority Waters and Communities Office is collaborating with the Heritage Council in promoting Water Heritage Day 2017.  If you wish to take part or organise an event, or to get more information simply visit or to contact your local Community Water Officer.

Here are 10 great water-based events happening on Water Heritage Day!

Onboard a Research Vessel – Kilmore Quay, Wexford

20, 27 August, 10am – 4pm

Come onboard our research vessel to learn about Ireland’s ancient and submerged landscapes with ‘Cherish and Infomar’. Meet marine geologists and archaeologists from the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Discovery Programme onboard a research vessel. Learn how the INFOMAR team map Ireland’s seabed and about the exciting new coastal heritage project CHERISH.

Dodder Otter Spotting – Dropping Well, Milltown, Dublin

27 August, 10am – 12pm

Go Dodder otter spotting and become aware of the river’s nature with Tim Clabon of the Irish Wildlife Trust. We will walk to Rathfarnham Bridge and while we can’t be sure to see otters we will see their slides and perhaps their holts as well as insects, birds, fish and the special flora of the river!

Salmon of Knowledge Festival   – Trim Castle, Meath

27 August, 11am – 5:30pm

Trim Salmon of Knowledge Festival, brought to you by Trim Tourism Network, takes
place August 27th, Water Day-Heritage Week 2017, in conjunction with Race Around Ireland. The festival is set against the magnificent backdrop of Trim Castle and will showcase cultural, historical and sporting activities both local and throughout the Boyne
valley. It’s set to be a great day with a packed programme of events and activities including our own Boyne Adventure Race using the River Boyne through Trim. With traditional music and dance, drama performances, stalls from Trim and Boyne Valley craftspeople, and entertainment throughout the day.

Kilbeggan Funday by the Brosna – Renew Kilbeggan, Westmeath

27 August, 12pm – 2:30pm

The River Brosna is Kilbeggan’s best-kept secret.. that is until now! A walk along the Brosna during Family Funday will enable children and adults alike to discover it’s secrets and amazing wildlife.

Something Fishy Going On – Glenveagh National Park, Donegal

27 August, 12pm – 4pm

An excellent opportunity to observe juvenile trout and salmon in an aquarium. Participants will have the opportunity to view a range of macroinvertebrates under microscopes. Fisheries Officers will be available to discuss the life cycle of various fish species and environmental factors that affect their survival. Participants will be able to view a range of macroinvertebrates including mayflies, stoneflies and freshwater shrimp to name a few.

Water Heritage Open Day –  Old Cork Waterworks Experience, Cork

27 August, 12pm – 4pm

As a special event for Heritage Week, Old Cork Waterworks Experience presents “Water Heritage Open Day”, a family fun day themed on the industrial heritage of Cork’s Victorian Waterworks. Throughout the day the team will provide guided tours of the impressive engine and boiler rooms offer an insight into the working day of a waterworks employee and map the role of water supply with the growth of Cork City. There are a range of engaging and educational activities available including make & do, marine science, giant bubbles as well as launching water rockets and a water science zone.

Broadmeadow River Family Day – Deerpark, Ashbourne, Meath

27 August, 12pm – 4:30pm

Join local enthusiasts as well as environmental experts for a family educational fun experience covering many fields on the biodiversity of the Broadmeadow. Identification of insects and an opportunity to see aquatic insects living in the river, learn how important they are for the other wildlife. Workshops on how to build an insect hotel, learn about invasive species and how to report, we will make some bird & bat boxes. A river cleanup will also take place early in the day and the rubbish found will be put on display. Waste will be sorted to demonstrate what can be recycled. New planting where flood alleviation was carried out.

Free Boat Rides – Oldbridge Sealock – Lock 1, Oldbridge, Drogheda, Meath

27 August, 1pm – 5pm

Boyne Canal voluntary restoration group offers trips along the Oldbridge section. It’s a unique opportunity to experience the canal from the water rather than the road. Restoration volunteers welcome. This is their 4th successive year offering free boat trips on the Boyne Canal. Why not bring the whole family to experience it in all its glory. You can observe the ongoing restoration work of IWAI volunteers and perhaps be tempted to join them, newcomers are always welcomed. Their aim is to restore this waterway to what it once was, a key attraction in the Boyne Valley, which is now also a part of Ireland’s Ancient East. Donations of knowledge, skills, materials or supplies are always welcome.

River Biodiversity Walk and Write – The Diving Boards of the River Barrow on the Quay, Kilkenny

27 August, 2pm – 4pm

River biodiversity walk and writing workshop featuring the River Barrow and drawing inspiration from what we see along the water’s edge. Led by biodiversity officer and children’s author Shane Casey. Celebrate National Water Heritage Day during Ireland’s Town of Books Festival August 25-27, where you will find 30+ booksellers, from specialist antiquities to children’s books filling every corner of this ancient riverside monastery town. Shane Casey works as a Biodiversity Officer and has published two delightful children’s books, he will lead us on a walk, talk and writing workshop on the banks of the River Barrow. Bring your notebook and pencil. See more at

Discover Your Catchment – Dunleer Market House, Louth

27 August, 2pm – 5pm

Enjoy an afternoon of arts and science at this interactive exhibit to learn about your catchment and the creatures that live in your catchment. Hosted by the Our Community, Our Water Project. As a special event for Water Heritage Day, discover why clean, healthy rivers and streams are so important for everyone in a catchment, including the bugs. Enjoy an afternoon of arts and science at this interactive exhibit to learn about your catchment and the creatures that live in your catchment. This family-friendly exhibit is hosted by the Our Community, Our Water Project with support from LAWCO.

For other water related events near you, check The Heritage Council’s website for more details.

Remember to always stay safe on or near water.

Other events from around the country for Water Heritage Day


  1. Kayak Tour of Limerick City
  2. Kayaking Tester Tour Limerick City
  3. Kayaking Tour Limerick City
  4. SUP tour Limerick City
  5. Sailing Tour Limerick City
  6. Barrow River Safari Kilkenny

Canal events

  1. River Dodder Otter Spotting Dublin
  2. Walk the Towpath of Richmond Harbor Longford
  3. Grand Canal Walk Dublin
  4. Grand Canal Dublin
  5. One Dodder Day, Photographic Exhibition

Boat tours

  1. Sea Marine and Heritage Boat Tour Donegal
  2. Coastal Heritage Cruise Donegal
  3. Free Boat Rides Boyne Canal in Drogheda
  4. Cruise through Leinster Aqueduct

Educational and historical

  1. Learn About Coastal Marine Life Walk Donegal
  2. Seaweed Identification day at Ellen Hutchins Festival in Cork
  3. James Caird Expedition Exhibition in Kildare
  4. Martello Tower Tours Dublin
  5. History of Dun Laoghaire Harbor Walk
  6. Wicklow Coastal Cliff Loop Walk
  7. Meet Marine Biologists on a Research Vessel in Wexford
  8. Fly Fishing Museum in Durrow Laois
  9. Open Day at Clare’s Loop Head Lighthouse
  10. Dolphin Spotting at the Shannon
  11. Reconnect with Water Learn About Your Local Catchments GLore Mill Mayo
  12. Discover Your Catchment Exhibition in Louth


  1. Family Event Pirate Day at Hook Lighthouse
  2. Walk and Write along the River Barrow

Who is involved?

Quite simply, everyone in Ireland has a role to play. This can be from something as simple as making sure you don’t pollute your local stream, or a local community working together to establish a Rivers Trust to enhance the rivers and lakes in their area, to a Government Department or Agency helping a Minister implement a new policy to help protect and enhance all our water bodies.

This website has been developed and is maintained by the Environmental Protection Agency, and is a collaboration between the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Local Authority Waters Programme.


Local Authority Waters Programme

The Local Authority Waters Programme coordinates the efforts of local authorities and other public bodies in the implementation of the River Basin Management Plan, and supports local community and stakeholder involvement in managing our natural waters, for everyone’s benefit.


Environmental Protection Agency

The EPA is responsible for coordinating the monitoring, assessment and reporting on the status of our 4,842 water bodies, looking at trends and changes, determining which waterbodies are at risk and what could be causing this, and drafting environmental objectives for each.


Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage

The Department is responsible for making sure that the right policies, regulations and resources are in place to implement the Water Framework Directive, and developing a River Basin Management Plan and Programme of Measures to protect and restore our waters.