Category Archives: Improve Your Life

Cllr McCarthy: Forward Planning Essential for Former ESB Marina Site, 1 July 2021

Independent Cllr Kieran McCarthy has welcomed discussion and forward planning on the decommissioned Marina power station in Cork city. “It was great to hear about formal confirmation this week that planning between the ESB, Cork City Council and the newly formed Land Development Agency in relation to possible future uses of the site is ongoing. For me the ESB site is one of four sites in South Docks, which have a lot of built and cultural heritage – the others being the old Ford Factory site, former Odlums Building and the R & H Hall grain silos. All four sites have been highly influential in the development of south docks historically plus also are iconic symbolic structures in the area. It would be a real pity to lose their presence in the future of south docks.

“I would like to see the future of South Docks with a mixture of old and new building stock, so that the area has a nuanced sense of place. For me as well, I would encourage any future development to work with the Council to create a riverside walk on the south docks, so that The Marina greenway would potentially lead and connect all the way into the city, and hence linking to walks just west of the city centre – all in all creating an iconic routeway all along the city’s River Lee sections with public health advantages, scenery and other uses in abundance”. concluded Cllr McCarthy.

Read more here on future of ESB Marina Site:Former Marina power station eyed up for housing (irishexaminer.com)

Cllr McCarthy: New Native Saplings Planted on Blackrock Castle Walkway, Late June 2021

Cllr Kieran McCarthy has welcomed the sponsorship by Coillte of new native saplings at the Blackrock Castle Walkway. Cllr McCarthy remarked: “In total this year, up to 1,200 trees were planted by Cork City Council Operations (Parks) this year. Cork Chamber are sponsoring another 200 of the 1,200 native trees being planted this year and have committed to at least two more years of sponsorship at €3,000k per year. This is a very generous contribution as it assists with increasing tree cover throughout the City”.

 Outgoing Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Joe Kavanagh said: “The Coillte trees planted are a representation of all primary and secondary schools in Cork City and speak to our past, present and future. The Lord Mayor’s Oak Tree Initiative 2021 symbolises the resilience, sustainability and growth synonymous with our schools”.

Coillte Supply Chain Manager, Dominic Joyce said: “Coillte is delighted to support such initiatives as they inspire future generations and increase awareness of the important role that trees play in mitigating climate change, improving habitats, increasing biodiversity and providing sustainable and renewable building materials. We are delighted to be associated with the Lord Mayor’s initiative to commemorate the independence struggle 100 years ago in this novel and environmentally friendly way”.

Saplings were also planted Glen River Park, Bridevalley Park, and the Curraheen Walkway. Plaques have been installed near the new trees and a QR code will direct  people to the Cork City Council commemorations site, www.corkcitycommemorations.ie where further details of the initiative will appear.

Cllr McCarthy: Marina Park Phase 1 Opening Delayed Until Late September 2021

In a recent reply to a question posed by Cllr Kieran McCarthy at the mid May City Council meeting, Cork City Council have noted revised the completion date of phase 1 of Marina Park. Due to Covid 19, delaying construction works, the completion date is now late August/early September this year. The revised opening date is late September/early October.

Cllr McCarthy noted: The phase one works comprise the construction of a new public car park at the Shandon Boat Club end of the Marina, as well as a new cycle lane and pedestrian walkway – these are all now completed. One can also see that the installation of perhaps the most eye-catching part of the project – a noticeable red steel pavilion on the site of, and replicating, the central hall of the former Munster Agricultural Showgrounds. The sides of the pavilion will not be enclosed, and there will be possibilities for coffee pods and outdoor seating and arts and crafts”.

“Another feature will include water jets for children to play in as well as the provision of public toilets. The public can now see the sunken lawn areas and the diversion of a watercourse, as well as new pathways – all of which are taking shape at present. The project is a e.10m investment into the area, of which nearly came from EU Urban Sustainable Funds, which are part of the EU’s structural funds and are a crucial source of funding for cities”, concluded Cllr McCarthy.

Kieran’s Cork Harbour Festival Events, Early June 2021

– Bridges of Cork – Online Talk:

  • 8 June 2021, 19:30 – 20:30, In association with Cllr Kieran McCarthy.

Cork City’s growth on a swamp is an amazing story. The city possesses a unique character derived from a combination of its plan, topography, built fabric and its location on the lowest crossing point of the river Lee as it meets the tidal estuary and the second largest natural harbour in the world. Indeed, it is also a city that is unique among other cities, it is the only one which has experienced all phases of Irish urban development, from circa 600 AD to the present day. Hence its bridges all date to different times of urban growth and possess different architectural traits. This zoom presentation explores the general development of the city’s bridges and why they were historically so important and are still so important in connecting the different parts of Cork City together.

Bridges of Cork – Online Talk ~ Cork Harbour Festival

FREE, Register here: https://forms.gle/pazrXi1nVPQFSqKJ7

Daly's Bridge, AKA Shaky Bridge, present day (picture: Kieran McCarthy)
Daly’s Bridge, AKA Shaky Bridge, present day (picture: Kieran McCarthy)

– Bridges of Cork Treasure Hunt:

  • 12 June 2021, 13:00 – 13:15, In association with Cllr Kieran McCarthy.

They say the best way to get to know a city is to walk it – in Cork you can get lost in narrow streets, marvel at old cobbled lane ways, photograph old street corners, look up beyond the modern shopfronts, gaze at clues from the past, be enthused and at the same time disgusted by a view, smile at interested locals, engage in the forgotten and the remembered, search and connect for something of oneself, thirst in the sense of story-telling – in essence feel the DNA of the place. This treasure hunt is all about looking up and around and exploring the heart of Cork City whilst exploring the stories and place of the city centre’s bridges.

Suitable for all ages, approx. 2hr self-guided walk, mixed footpaths on city’s quays.

FREE, Join: Meet Cllr Kieran McCarthy at National Monument, Grand Parade, Cork, between 13:00-13:15, no booking required. Bring a pen. Self guided heritage treasure hunt.

Bridges of Cork Treasure Hunt ~ Cork Harbour Festival

St Patrick's Bridge, Cork, present day (picture: Kieran McCarthy)

St Patrick’s Bridge, Cork, present day (picture: Kieran McCarthy)

– The Marina – Self Guided Audio Trail:

  • 4 June 2021 – June 14, 2021, 06:00 – 23:55,In association with Cllr Kieran McCarthy, FREE

A stroll down The Marina is popular by many people. The area is particularly characterized by its location on the River Lee and the start of Cork Harbour. Here scenery, historical monuments and living heritage merge to create a historical tapestry of questions of who developed such a place of ideas. Where not all the answers have survived, The Marina is lucky, unlike other suburbs, that many of its former residents have left archives, autobiographies, census records, diaries, old maps and insights into how the area developed. These give an insight into ways of life and ambitions in the past, some of which can help the researcher in the present day in understanding The Marina’s evolution and sense of place going forward. Take a walk with us and discover more.

The audio tour will be available here to stream live on your smartphone from 4-14 June 2021, The Marina – Self Guided Audio Trail ~ Cork Harbour Festival

Autumn at The Marina, Cork (picture: Kieran McCarthy)
Autumn at The Marina, Cork (picture: Kieran McCarthy)

Cllr McCarthy: Enhanced Recreational Jewels in the Heart of Douglas Village Most Welcome

Independent Cllr Kieran McCarthy has welcomed the conclusion of the Douglas Flood Relief Scheme. “In the past two months, the contractor on the Douglas Flood Relief Scheme has substantially completed all construction works on the project. The remaining works consist of some minor snags, fence installations and completion of final landscaping works”. 

“What has emerged are enhanced recreational jewels in the heart of Douglas Village with a larger focus on connecting The Mangala and Ballybrack Woods across to Douglas Community Park. The flood prevention measures, which have incorporated new seating and biodiversity areas and corridors, as well as creating a stronger visual element upon the adjacent stream are most welcome”.

“It has been great in the past few weeks to see people sitting out enjoying the new vistas and ultimately embracing an enhanced community space. Great credit is due to Cork City Council, Arup Engineering and to the OPW. It has been a long process over eight years from draft plans drawn up in connection with Cork County Council to implementation under Cork City Council’s watchful eye. In the past year, the advent of COVID also slowed down construction work, which required much patience by the people and businesses of Douglas”.

“There have also been status orange rainfall events in Cork, since the start of the year and the new flood defences in Douglas worked as expected and carried a huge volume of water through the village safely. From observations and experience on site it is believed that had the defences not been constructed, there would have been considerable flooding in the Ravensdale and Church Road area”, concluded Cllr McCarthy. 

Call out 1: Cllr McCarthy’s Make a Model Boat Project 2021

Douglas Road and Independent Cllr Kieran McCarthy invites all Cork young people to participate in the eleventh year of McCarthy’s Make a Model Boat Project. This year because of COVID all interested participants once again make a model boat at home from recycled materials and submit a picture or a video of it to the competition organisers. All models should be photographed or videoed and emailed to admin@corkharbourfestival.com by 23 May 2021.

The event is being run in association with Meitheal Mara and the Cork Harbour Festival Team. There are three categories, two for primary and one for secondary students. The theme is ‘At Home by the Lee’, which is open to interpretation. The model must be creative though and must be able to float. There are prizes for best models and the event is free to enter. For further information, please see the community events section at www.kieranmccarthy.ie

Cllr McCarthy, who is heading up the event, noted “I am encouraging creation, innovation and imagination amongst our young people, which are important traits for all of us to develop. I am going to miss this year seeing the models float at The Lough. The Make a Model Boat Project is part of a suite of community projects I have organised and personally invested in over the years– the others include the Discover Cork: Schools’ Heritage Project with Cork City Council, the Community local history walks, local history publications, McCarthy’s Community Talent Competition and Cork City Musical Society.

VIEW winning model boats from 2020:

Discover Cork: Schools’ Heritage Project 2021 concludes with online Awards Ceremony


The conclusion of this school season’s Discover Cork Schools’ Heritage Project was recently marked by an online awards ceremony and presentation of winning projects. A total of 25 schools in Cork City took part in the 2020-21 edition, which ranged from schools in Ballinlough, Ballintemple, Blackrock to Blarney and Glanmire, and from Ballyphehane to the Shandon area. Circa 1,000 students participated in the process this year with approx 200 project books submitted on all aspects of Cork’s local history & heritage. 

The Discover Cork Schools’ Heritage Project is in its 18th year and is a youth platform for students to do research and write it up in a project book whilst offering their opinions on important decisions being made on their heritage in their locality and how they affect the lives of people locally.  The aim of the project is to allow students to explore, investigate and debate their local heritage in a constructive, active and fun way.

    Co-ordinator and founder of the Project, Cllr Kieran McCarthy noted that: “The Project this year was even more apt this year as we all find ourselves within our localities much more. In particular, this year’s entries focussed on famous buildings of Cork City, historic walkways, public parks and many oral history projects. Again, this year students made fab models and short films on their topics. One could also see the family and friend involvement in projects. Technically with this project for every one student, there are another four people who have been consulted and who are consulted to help with projects. One could argue that over 4,000 people have some input into project books every year”.

“The Schools’ Heritage Project remains focussed about developing new skill sets within young people in thinking about, understanding, appreciating, and making relevant in today’s society the role of our heritage  our landmarks, our stories, our landscapes in our modern world. Ultimately the project focuses on motivating and inspiring young people through them working on a heritage project for several weeks and seeks to build a sense of place and identity amongst younger people”, concluded Cllr McCarthy.

The Project is funded by Cork City Council with further sponsorship offered by the Old Cork Waterworks Experience and Cllr Kieran McCarthy.

 Full results are online on Cllr McCarthy’s local history website, www.corkheritage.ie. There is also a link there to the YouTube award ceremony. On the YouTube video Kieran, the Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Joe Kavanagh, and Niamh Twomey, City Council Heritage Officer speak about the winning projects for this school season.