Kilkenny Countryside Park is open for visitors

Kilkenny Countryside Park is open for visitors. The former Kilkenny dump has been rehabilitated as the new country Park and is open to visitors. From the city centre cycle access can be via Bleach road, there is also parking available off the bleach road, adjacent to the park entrance at Castlecomer road or alternatively parking at Dunmore church and access the park via the historic mass path.A recycle centre is located adjacent all recycle items can be returned and segregated.

New planting is ongoing and attractive seating and activity centres for both young and old and our doggy friends are provided.There is even a hurling wall protecting the great hurling tradition of Kilkenny.

Hurling wall with two sides

There area also sustainable toilet facilities. the park closes each evening the time varies depending on the time of year. there is extensive new planting.

Happy Christmas 2023 to all – and Keep Kilkenny Beautiful

What an exciting year we had  in  Kilkenny City and  for  our Keep Kilkenny Beautiful team and all our volunteers and supporters.

We hope you enjoyed keeping up with all our activities  in 2023 on our  website and also on  our facebook and whats app pages. Why not contact us  in the new year and join us  in our  work to create  a  sustainable Kilkenny  city in 2024 and beyond!

Best wishes to all for Christmas 2023 and the new year of 2024!

 

 

Santa welcomed to Yule fest in Kilkenny by KKB

Santa arrived  at Canal square by boat from  the river Nore on the 25th November  to  great excitement. KKB were on hand  to  provide a cycle escort for Santa on his short trip to  the Parade where the Kilkenny Yulefest  Christmas  fair has commenced.

Mayors walk full of activity

Maria, KKB chairperson awaits  Santa as part of the  cycle escort

 

KKB Submission to the 4th National Biodiversity Action Plan

we set out under KKB Submission to the 4th National Biodiversity Action Plan:-

 

4th National Biodiversity Action Plan

Response to Draft for Public Consultation. Thank you for the opportunity to consult on the above matter. We would be grateful if the following points could be considered for future drafts.

 

Whole of government and whole of society approach

·         Effective communication and buy-in are critical to delivering the national biodiversity strategy. Increasingly, sectors like agriculture, industry and conservation are becoming more siloed and oppositional as policy and financial pressures increase and mutual understanding decreases. In order to deliver a truly ‘whole of government and whole of society approach’ all sectors of government, business and society need to be included in the delivery of the biodiversity strategy. Effective solutions to biodiversity issues can often emerge from within a community, sector or industry when engagement is meaningful and non-confrontational.

 

·         There is potential to introduce pilot projects that bring different communities and sectors together to deliver tangible on-the-ground solutions to specific issues in areas such as agriculture, energy and community development in a collaborative way. These pilot projects could be used to promote, not just the solution, but the collaborative process that delivered change and models conflict resolution strategies.

 

Biodiversity Net Gain

 

·         The Plan should set out objectives that enable each sector to achieve Biodiversity Net Gain on new plans and projects. Mandatory BNG has recently been introduced in England and Wales and adopted voluntarily in other areas and sectors. Good quality baseline information is critical to delivering and monitoring BNG along with adequate resources within the consenting authority to review applications and long-term delivery.

 

·          Planning and Development requiring planning permission should be linked to the achievement of good ecological status in associated water courses prior to planning approval and after completion of projects

 

Communities

·         Community empowerment is one of the most effective means of delivering change and is necessary for societal buy-in. Bottom-up initiatives like the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan have proven successful in harnessing community energy by undertaking  clear evidence-based, targeted actions on a very specific topic. Similar initiatives could be developed through organisations on the ground once they are adequately resourced to develop targeted strategies. This can can help avoid stagnation in the delivery of top-down policy.

 

Education and research

·         It is estimated that there is as much biodiversity below ground as above ground, but soil ecology and biodiversity is often completely overlooked, outside agricultural fertility parameters. Healthy soils are critical to food production, carbon sequestration, medical treatments and a range of other services that are beginning to be recognised. This is a growing area of research in light of both the biodiversity and climate crises and would benefit from acknowledgement and support within the NBAP.

 

·         Further emphases should be given to delivering sustainable education programmes at Junior, TY and Senior cycles to introduce ecological literacy and ensure that children and young adults have a good understanding of biodiversity issues and actions needed to protect it. Increasingly, more of us are living in urban settings and have lost connections to nature and our basic understanding of food production and other ecosystem services. There is potential to develop projects that link schools with the farming community or other individuals and groups that work with nature. While many programmes, such as Green Schools, have achieved excellent results, there is still significant potential to bring nature and sustainability into schools and the curriculum as a whole.

Resourcing and waste management

·         Food production and food waste are critical issue for biodiversity both globally and nationally. Globally we waste one-third of all food produced annually. This equates to approximately 16% of habitable land on the planet. In Ireland, we waste approximately 1 million tonnes of food per annum. By changing this one issue, we could divert the wasted land resources to biodiversity use and reduce GHG emissions from production and decomposition. The Plan clearly acknowledges the devastation impacts climate change will have on biodiversity and the irreversible effects on ecosystems. Targeted programmes to engage communities on the ground to tackle specific issues around food production and waste could be considered for support within the Plan.

 

·         An engaged society, targeted actions and adequate resources are needed to deliver an effective strategy. Funding along with people’s time and energy are all limited resources and should be spent wisely. Ineffective and wasteful spending should be identified within Departments and programmes and re-routed to bodies and programmes that can deliver. Examples of this occur in agricultural schemes where participants are financially incentivised to take actions that have no demonstrated benefits, or in some instances, they have negative effects on biodiversity. These schemes are sometimes developed without the appropriate input from relevant experts and groups that could guide a meaningful programme. In other instances, it can occur where new actions or programmes are trialled but proved ineffective, but continue to be implemented by Departments.

 

Lessons learned

·         Globally and nationally, we have failed to deliver on successive plans and actions to protect biodiversity. Our food, energy and consumption models are broken and need transformative change. Learning is an iterative process and mistakes are part of that process. It’s important that we build in effective review processes, learning from previous successes and failures and change course as required.

 

 

Fantastic Result for Kilkenny City Tidy towns 2023

Congratulations to all our volunteers, community groups, businesses and Kilkenny county council on  the receipt of a fantastic result for Kilkenny city in the 2023 national tidy towns competition .

Kilkenny is the  2023 recipient of the County award, a gold medal and the South East regional award.

To see the detailed  adjudicators  report  2023 with  link on separate page to  tidy towns site press link Kilkenny City report 2023

Kilkenny received 274 point a rise of 12 points on our 2022 results. Congratulations to Ballincollig  who pipped Kilkenny by one point to win the national tidiest large urban centre 2023 and to Abbeyleix  the 2023 overall winner 2023,

A great cheer from  some of our 20k pollinator  planting challenge  &  environs saturday clean up   work groups!

IBAL success for Kilkenny – Cleaner than European Norms 2023

A great result for Kilkenny city achieved  in the Summer 2023 IBAL survey released 26th June 2023. Kilkenny was ranked  3rd in Ireland. congratulation to Maynooth   for a 1st in this round.

This result reflects all the hard work undertaken by all our volunteers, community groups &  organisations and  Kilkenny CoCo.

Our city report is set out under.

Kilkenny:  3rd out of 40 towns / cities surveyed.  Cleaner than European Norms

A very strong performance from Kilkenny, as we have come to expect from this tourist destination of historical note.  All of the approach roads got the top litter grade, setting the tone for the majority of the remaining sites surveyed.  Market Cross Shopping Centre was absolutely spotless, not even a cigarette butt to be seen.  The grounds of Kilkenny Castle Parklands were wonderful – a complete absence of litter throughout.  The approach to Kilkenny Castle, via The Parade was an exceptionally freshly presented and maintained environment with all aspects in excellent order. 

 

 

 Thurles Approach Road:  Grade A. (Area surveyed from ‘Welcome to Kilkenny’ signage just after Texaco filling station) A very good first impression of Kilkenny.  Minimal litter items observed.  Road surface closer to the town was new and fresh looking.

 

N10 Approach Road:  Grade A.  (up to old Dublin Road Roundabout form Harbour Road Roundabout) A freshly presented and maintained main route from the motorway.  Apart from some plastic bags, it was very good with regard to litter.

 

Kilkenny Ring Road:  Grade A.  (including Area by IMC Cinema) Freshly presented road surface / markings / signage.  All appeared in very good order; nice grass area on the right, opposite the cinema – there were no visible litter issues.

 

Mother of Fair Love School:  Grade A.  From the outside of the school, all aspects appeared in good order.  Nice area of tulips / daffodils within the school grounds and colourful planter box at the school gate.  To the side of the building there was more planting of other seeds.  It was very much deserving of the top litter grade.

 

Bring Centre at St. Canice’s:  Grade B.  Very clear and extensive signage relating to the use of this tiny facility.  Just a few bottle / can units and one clothing unit; Packaging had been very deliberately discarded in the corner location. There was also broken glass also at the base of the bins.  With a little extra care this could easily be a Grade A site.

 

Market Cross Shopping Centre:  Grade A.  The cleanest shopping centre this surveyor has ever seen!  There wasn’t even a cigarette butt to be seen.  Some of the bins provided the opportunity to separate waste into recycling.  Lovely, large planter boxes throughout, along with attractive planting underfoot at ground level.  Lovely wooden seating, some with built in planter boxes.  Complete absence of litter throughout.  Clearly a careful eye is kept on closed down premises, (of which there were plenty), as there was no litter associated with any of them.

 

High Street:  Grade A.  An exceptionally clean main shopping street with many lovely features throughout e.g., paving, seating, silver bollards, street maps, planting etc.  It was so very much deserving of the top litter grade.  There were many closed down premises, with no litter associated with them.

 

Kilkenny Castle Parkland:  Grade A.  If Grade A+ was awarded, this site would certainly be deserving of same.  A fantastic amenity which was being enjoyed by many on a sunny day towards the end of Easter holidays.  It is an extensive site, replete with outdoor café / picnic tables / playground / pond and several KM signed walking / running pathways.  It was spotless throughout, extraordinarily clean for such a vast site – a credit to the users and those responsible for the maintenance of same.  Some ‘Bees at Work’ signage in one corner site.

 

River Walk:  Grade B+.  There was no litter along the Horseleap side of the river. Some minor food and cigarette / vaping related items along the side of the river by the library. Lifebelts, paving, colourful planting etc were all in good order.   Picnic table area was clear of litter.

 

The Parade:  Grade A.  This wide expanse of road is exceptionally well served by litter bins.

Picnic tables with built in chess / drafts board; bicycle parking / Bolt Ebike scheme / Public Toilets etc. – all aspects were in excellent condition.  Excellent visitor information signage – interactive as well as various maps etc.  The whole area was very good with regard to litter.