An Taisce, Donegal Association - Annual Report 2016.

2nd October 2017

Finally, an unfortunate mix up meant that the report from the Donegal Local association was not included in the Annual Report that you were sent earlier. Please see that below.

May McClintock. RIP
The death of May McClintock, a stalwart of our Association and our Chairman of many years, dominated the year 2016 for us. We mourn her loss to us and remember her many talents and the contributions she made. She was our energetic and enthusiastic guiding light and our friend. We plan to erect a fitting memorial to May in Letterkenny Town Park in 2017.

We held our AGM on June 7th 2016 (attendance 32). We had 7 Committee meetings during the year (average attendance 11). Discussion at these meetings included a wide variety of topics such as planning, invasive alien species (with particular focus on Japanese knotweed), guided nature walks, Green Schools, County Donegal Heritage Committee, An Taisce properties at Crocknaferragh and in Mulroy Bay (including livestock trespass on Rough Island), and increasing our membership.

Protocol re Submissions on Planning
This protocol is an arrangement whereby comments submitted by the Advocacy Unit in Tailor’s Hall to Donegal Co Council are notified to us as a courtesy so that we are aware of such comments. This is working very satisfactorily.

Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL) Reports

We received queries and criticism from the public concerning the IBAL report of 2016 on Letterkenny. (This is a repetition of the reaction to reports of previous years.) It is apparent that the report refers to a seeming nebulous geographic area much greater than that of the town. We have tried to get a precise definition of the geographic area covered by the report but we have failed to do so to date (end of February 2017).

Facebook Page:
Please find us on Facebook - “An Taisce Donegal” – we would appreciate if you liked it and shared it. It is a very useful source of information on our activities. The same applies to our section of the national An Taisce web page.

Representation on official bodies.
Committee members are represented on the following bodies: The Donegal Co Council Heritage Forum, Donegal Local Development Company, Errigal Stakeholders Group/ASCENT project, Letterkenny to Burtonport Greenway Proposal. Following an invitation from Donegal Co. Council we made a presentation about our activities in An Taisce to the Environment and Emergency Strategic Policy Committee on 18th Feb. 2016. We engaged in the discussion that followed.

Donegal Heritage Plan 2016 – 2020
We have undertaken to conduct a survey of Heritage Trees in Donegal as part of the Donegal Heritage Plan 2016-2020. We submitted observations in relation to the “Roadside Verges Survey of Inishowen” which is being undertaken as part of that plan.

An Taisce Calendar: “Treasures of Donegal”
We launched our calendar “Treasures of Donegal 2017” with a print run of 1,000 calendars. This edition contains an increased amount of text “as Gaeilge”. Sales continue to be as buoyant as ever.

Annual Craft Sale
We held our sixteenth Annual Craft Sale on November 27th 2016. We had 73 exhibitors and an estimated attendance of 400 people.

Wildlife Walks and Talks
Our woodland walk for National Biodiversity Week (for which we received grant aid) was led by Ralph and Liz Sheppard and was attended by 70 people. We funded 6 other free guided walks and talks from our own funds. These were attended by a total of 387 people. These covered the following topics (the names of the guides are in brackets) “Pollinator Plan - Donegal” (Colm Grant & George McDermott), “Donegal’s Golden Eagles and Uplands” (Lorcan O’Toole), “St John’s Point, Dunkineely – Donegal’s Burren” in association with Birdwatch Ireland (Ralph Sheppard), “The Life in the River” (Owen Kelly and his colleagues in Inland Fisheries Ireland), “Rathmullan Beach - From Sea Shore to Woodland” (Aengus Kennedy), “Sheskinmore Nature Reserve” in association with Birdwatch Ireland (Ralph Sheppard).

We sponsor the “May McClintock Wildlife Garden Competition” run by Letterkenny Tidy Towns Committee.

An Taisce Butterfly Garden
We continue to maintain our Butterfly Garden in Letterkenny and the flowerbed we have established in the garden on the site of the former workhouse in Letterkenny.

Noel Foley
087 2515525
Feb 27th 2017