Catchment News

Water events for Heritage Week (13-21 August) and Water Heritage Day, Sunday 21 August

There are events on all around the country next week to celebrate Heritage Week. National Heritage Week 2022 will focus on two themes: sustainable heritage and biodiversity. Water meanders through both themes like a great river through the landscape, shaping the natural, built, and cultural heritage of communities along its path. Our natural waters reflect our past, present, and future and will be celebrated on Water Heritage Day on Sunday.

National Heritage Week 13-22 August 2022

For the past two years, our ability to gather in large groups has been restricted. Thankfully, it is different this year. Community Water Officers will work with Heritage Officers in each county to support community-led projects and events that explore nature and our natural waters. This year there is a particular focus on projects that highlight nature and biodiversity in towns and cities, in appreciation of cleaner, greener urban spaces.

Some memorable water projects from the last two years include:

  • Stories from the Waterside – a unique collection of almost 500 stories from across Ireland. Submitted in both Irish and English by young and old alike as reflections on local waterbodies and appreciations of nature during restrictions of 2km and 5km journeys from home. See
  • In Search of Otter Poo: Otter ID on Mulkear River – Participants were led on a voyage of discovery along the river at Annacotty, Co. Limerick and children were encouraged to become nature detectives and learn about the wonderful, mysterious, and elusive world of Ireland’s otters.
  • Paddling through the Past – a guided kayak trip explored the cultural landscape of the Swilly Catchment, understanding how man has changed the landscape of the Inishowen and Fanad.
The launch of Heritage Week 2022.

Water Heritage Day, Sunday 21 August

It is said that rivers are a mirror for society; they reflect our impressions on the land. At no time in living memory has our impact on the natural world been so abundantly clear as it is today. We need to change certain behaviours and practices if we are to achieve a more sustainable way of living, in balance with the natural world. Only then will our rivers, lakes and natural waters reflect a society with a full appreciation of nature and our living heritage.

Hope for achieving a sustainable future lies in local communities. By working together and supporting one another, we can learn to appreciate what is around us and to protect it for future generations to enjoy. Community Water Officers work with communities all year round and help celebrate, protect and restore our waters. This work is highlighted in local communities all around Ireland each year during Heritage Week and especially on Water Heritage Day.

Get involved

Here are some ways you can get involved in Water Heritage Day:

  • With growing interest in Citizen Science as a way of generating new knowledge and understanding of nature, a local event can help communities learn more about the health of their local river and wildlife. Take part in a fun and educational activity to record and monitor nature and biodiversity in your local area.
  • Enhance your local water body and biodiversity. Nature knows what works best and there is a range of practical hands-on activities that communities can do to enhance their neighbourhood for biodiversity, public enjoyment, and climate resilience. Community events could include building raingardens, native tree planting in public spaces, or helping to roll out the All Ireland Pollinator Plan.

If you or your community have an idea regarding your local river, lake, estuary, or coast and would like to talk to someone who can help you can contact your local Community Water Officer Here

Find an event near you

Water events are on the embedded calendar on the top right of this page and also on the LA Waters website.

All events are on

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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.