Catchment News

Celebrate your community’s water and its heritage – Water Heritage Day, August 25th

Celebrate water during National Heritage Week, August 17 – 25.

Each year National Heritage Week takes place over the last week of August. It provides opportunities to interact and explore our natural, built and cultural heritage, thereby encouraging its conservation and preservation. Many of the events that take place during Heritage Week are supported by national and local community organisations and are free to attend.

Water Heritage Day is Sunday 25th August. It is a collaboration between The Heritage Council and the Local Authority Waters Programme to celebrate water and our connections with it.

Pastimes | Past Times

This year’s theme Pastimes | Past Times is an opportunity to recall great stories, songs, crafts, sports and other activities associated with your local river, lake, canal or coast. Why not organise something in your community? Examples include:

  • a trip to discover a holy well;
  • the wildlife along a river, lake or coast;
  • a guided walk to explore the built and cultural heritage of your local waterway.

As an island nation, our history and our heritage have been shaped by the sea and the great Irish rivers, lakes and wetlands. Stories, songs and poems passed down through generations have preserved deep-rooted traditions and connections with water.

Cities, towns and villages developed along our coast because of access to the sea, deep water ports and river estuaries for trade and transport. Fishing has supported rural communities and ensured a steady supply of fish for table and market. In fact, as a nation we owe a great deal to our natural waters and the myriad of wildlife they support.

Get involved:

If you would like to organise a water heritage event you can register it at

If you need any assistance from your local Community Water Officer, you can find contact details at

The Local Authority Waters Programme works with local authorities, public bodies, stakeholders and local communities to protect, maintain and improve water quality in our natural waters.

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 4,829 water bodies, looking at trends and changes, determining which waterbodies are at risk and what could be causing this, and drafting environmental objectives and measures 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 that will be implemented after public consultation and sign off by the Minister.