Catchment News

Moy River Trust – locals working together to breathe new life into their water and their community

Over a hundred people and 24 groups attended the recent ‘Moy River Trust Expo’ on December 12th at Mount Falcon Estate, Ballina. The event was organised by the Moy Catchment Association, and had information on how the local community could get involved in setting up a rivers trust, what the benefits of a rivers trusts would be, and the key role that local community involvement, awareness and education could play.

This awareness event was opened by Councillor Michael Smyth who spoke positively about the council’s role so far and the commitment they were willing to give in support of it. The Moy Catchment Association chairperson Jim Wilson then gave some background on how the Expo event came about.

“A catchment isn’t just about rivers and lakes, it’s also about the communities.  Working together we can breathe new life into our waters and our communities.”

Jim Wilson, Moy Catchment Association.

He was followed by Ray Spain who is the regional director for the Waters and Communities office. Ray outlined their role in helping communities to take a greater role in water quality, resulting in healthier waters and more vibrant communities. He went on to mention funding streams now available through the Local Authority Waters and Communities Office for community projects focused on improving water quality.  Ray also acknowledged Mick Kane, Community Water Officer for Mayo, who has been working closely with the volunteers in the Moy Catchment Association.

“when we talk about catchments we talk about communities, we talk about waters, because we are all connected”

Ray Spain, Coordinator, Local Authority Waters and Communities Office

Hugh Bonner from Mara Media who publish Ireland West airport magazine as well as various fishing publications spoke about the potential that exists to develop the Moy valley as a tourist destination that caters for all outdoor enthusiasts. He praised the foresight Mayo county council had in promoting and developing resources for visitors to the area and spoke of the need for everyone to place a greater value on our natural resources, to work together, and to raise the profile of our tourism industry.

The keynote speech was then delivered by Mark Horton, All-Ireland director of the Rivers Trust. Mark gave examples of the positive impact that trusts are having on communities and the support that is there throughout the UK and Ireland.

Jim Wilson rounded off the presentations by thanking everyone in attendance and asked people to mingle, discuss and put forward ideas for suitable projects as well as nominating their willingness to join the future board being set up in 2018.  Angelina Nugent compered for the evening,  introducing speakers as well as taking time to interview different community and government agencies about the potential benefits gained from developing a trust.

Get involved in the Moy River Trust

If you would like to get involved, find out more or know of someone you may think might have an interest in becoming involved please use the contact numbers and emails below.

Ciaran Boland 086-3800034

Gary Smyth 086-8384684

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.