Friday, 28 August 2015

Carrickfergus In Bloom Community Competitions

The winners and runners up in the hotly contested Carrickfergus in Bloom community competitions have been announced.

Best Kept Garden

Winner: Georgina Daphne Brown

Runner-Up: Ruth Hickey
Runner-Up: Philomena Corey
Runner-Up: Phil Allen

Best Kept Allotment (sponsored by Sunnybank Garden Centre)

Winner: Jenny Hawthorn

Runner-Up: Mark Hutchinson
Runner-Up: Graham Easthope
Runner-Up: Magi Delahay

Best Kept Community Planting Scheme

Winner: Charles Sheils Charity

Runner-Up: Impact Carrickfergus
Runner-Up: Carrickfergus Traders Association
Runner-Up: Windsor Residents Association

Best Kept Commercial Premises

Winner: The Royal Oak, Carrickfergus

Runner-Up: Lighthouse Yarns, Whitehead
Runner-Up: Anita’s Courtyard Gifts, Carrickfergus
Runner-Up: The Windrose, Carrickfergus

Best Kept Garden Winner - Georgina Daphne Brown

Best Kept Garden Runner-Up - Ruth Hickey

Best Kept Allotment Winner - Jenny Hawthorn

Best Kept Community Planting Scheme Winner - Charles Sheils Charity, Christine Harper (second from right) pictured with Sheils residents

Best Kept Commercial Premises - The Royal Oak, owner Michael Degnan pictured

Best Kept Commercial Premises Runner-Up - Lighthouse Yarns, owner Louise Williamson pictured (left) with knitting group

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Friends Of Bashfordsland Wood & Oakfield Glen Volunteer Programme

Are you interested in getting outdoors in the fresh air, learning new skills and meeting like-minded people? Then our volunteer programme could be for you! As a member of the ‘Friends Of’ volunteer group, you’ll be helping conserve and protect your local woodland and playing a vital role in bringing our woods to life and opening them up for everyone to enjoy.

Tasks will vary from litter picking and path maintenance to wildlife surveys and tree management. We will be meeting on the second Saturday of each month at Oakfield Community Centre at 10am  (to 1pm) 

Task days:
Saturday 12th September 2015
Saturday 10th October 2015
Saturday 14th November 2015
Saturday 12th December 2015

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

A Plot For All Ages

Photos from the National Allotment Week celebrations at Eden Allotment Gardens, Carrickfergus. 'A Plot for all Ages’ was this year’s theme and was designed to emphasise the benefits that allotments bring to everyone regardless of age and to highlight the fact that we need to value our plots and preserve them for future generations to enjoy. Events at Eden Allotment Gardens included Allotment Wildlife Walk, Allotment Arts & Crafts, Allotment Tidy Up and Organic Compost & Fertilizer Workshop

Looking for birds and bugs at Eden Allotment Gardens

Arts & Crafts at Eden Allotment Gardens

Tidy Up at Eden Allotment Gardens

Thursday, 13 August 2015

Mid and East Antrim Flower Show 2015

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council will be hosting its first annual Flower Show on 22nd August 2015 in The Market Yard, Larne. Our area is blooming with local horticultural talent, as demonstrated by the many awards won by our towns and villages, and the show offers the opportunity for green thumbed enthusiasts to exhibit the fruits of that talent, helping to create a colourful spectacle for everyone to enjoy. Entrants to the home industry section will be tempting members of the public with their mouth-watering cakes and jams while entrants to the Floral Arrangement section will be wowing everyone with their artistic displays. For further information Tel: 028 2826 7411 or Email:

Download guidelines and entry form here

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Biodiversity Summer School

Thanks to all who attended the Biodiversity Summer School!
We hope you had a great time learning about our wonderful wildlife. 

Seed bombing

Bird, bat and insect boxes

Saturday, 8 August 2015

National Allotment Week 2015

 National Allotment Week runs from Monday 10th - Sunday 16th August this year and the theme is 'A Plot for all Ages’. The theme is designed to emphasise the benefits that allotments bring to everyone regardless of age and to highlight the fact that we need to value our remaining plots and preserve them for future generations to enjoy. With this in mind we are providing a range of activities that we hope will appeal to a wide range of people and interests.

Activities at Eden Allotment Gardens, Carrickfergus:

Wednesday12th August, 2pm - 3pm – Allotment Wildlife

A walk around the allotments looking for birds and bugs!

Thursday 13th August, 2pm – 4pm - Allotment Art

Take inspiration from the allotment gardens – paint plant pots and create flowers from recycled materials.  Prizes for best!

Friday 14th August, 2pm – 4pm - Allotment Tidy Up

A chance to tidy your plot! Bags and gloves will be available today and skips will be on site all weekend

Saturday 15th August, 12noon – 1pm - Allotment Workshop

Learn about composting and organic fertilizers. Meet other allotment holders and share tips!

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Play Day 2015

Thanks to all who braved the rain today and joined in our Play Day celebrations at Marine Gardens!

Cllr Billy Ashe, Mayor of Mid & East Antrim Borough Council, with Callum Williams, Rory Williams and Owen Finlay 

Play Day 2015

Play Day is the National Day for play traditionally celebrated on the first Wednesday in August. On Playday thousands of children and their families get out to play at hundreds of community events across the UK. As well as a celebration of children's right to play, Playday is a campaign that highlights the importance of play in children's lives. 

Play Day in Carrickfergus is being held today (Wednesday 5th August) 11am to 3pm in Marine Gardens. This free event includes bouncy castles, face painting, DJ and much more.

Biodiversity Summer School 2015

Biodiversity Summer School is running Monday 3rd to Friday 7th August 2015, every day 11am to 1pm, at Diamond Jubilee Wood, Whitehead. Biodiversity Summer School gives families the opportunity to learn about the natural world through a variety of activities. 

Monday 3rd August - Come Dine with Me
Help feed our feathered friends by making lots of tasty cakes and treats from raw ingredients. Using natural and recycled materials these treats can be left in the nature reserve or taken home and will completely biodegrade. Learn how to reuse household waste to create simple feeders for taking home and learn the importance of feeding birds especially through the winter season.

Tuesday 4th August - Bug Life!
Bugs - they’re not creepy and they don’t crawl. Find out what lives in the grass, between the trees and in the ponds. Catch them in nets and scoop them from the ponds, watch them up close and learn their names. There is also a collection of wonderful insects from around the world to compare to our local species. Are you brave enough to hold one in your hand?

Wednesday 5th August - Seed Bombing
Get your hands dirty for a great cause. Roll up your sleeves and make mud pies and dip them in lots of lovely native wildflower seeds. Join us for a walk around the woodland, find a bare patch of ground and then… throw your seed bomb where it will grow into a beautiful patch of wildflowers over the next few years. Bees will love you for giving them food!

Thursday 6th August - Build-a-Box
Do you want to attract more wildlife into your garden? Make your own habitat for wildlife to take home. Choose from bird or bat box or a mini-beast hostel , and use a range of hand tools to follow a set template. Learn the importance of protecting our native birds and bats with instruction on where to place and how to monitor your bird and bat box.

Friday 7th August - Come Fly with Me

Make your own kite from natural and recycled resources. Take a walk in the woodland and hunt for natural materials to decorate and personalise your high flying kite. Once made, the kites will fly high in the woodland before a celebratory end of week get together with refreshments.

Love Parks Week 2015

A big thank you to everyone who came out and showed love for their local parks! Photos below of some of the fun had during this years Love Parks Week celebrations.