2020 ACTION PLAN and 5 YEAR PLAN FOR WILDLIFE, HABITATS AND NATURAL AMENITIES

2020 EIGHT POINT ACTION PLAN (December 6, 2019)
1. Culture & Heritage
• Erect a fence and access stile at Corbally Graveyard
• Remove trees at Inishkenny graveyard
• Prepare a maintenance plan for Inishkenny and Corbally graveyards
• Place vintage agricultural machinery in areas other than Ballinora and Waterfall villages
• Seek funding to place sculptures/art pieces in Ballinora and Waterfall villages
• Research impact of West Cork Railway on life in Ballinora
• Prepare management plan for Waterfall bridge
• Research archeological sites in Ballinora/Waterfall
• Research local activity in Ballinora/Waterfall during the 1921 War of Independence
• Research the building of the Viaduct and railway line passing through Waterfall.
• Paint mural of Waterfall Railway Station somewhere in Waterfall village
• Repair/restore the old church in Inishkenny graveyard
• Install old style replica phone box

2. Social Inclusion
• Investigate rural bus service for Ballinora/Waterfall
• Promote social opportunities for older people, particularly during the day – a Drama Group, Book Club, Scrabble Club, Historical Society, House Visitations.
3 – Environment
• Through the ‘Better Energy Communities Programme 2020’, facilitate a community-wide deep retrofit energy improvement in buildings.
• Promote reduction in plastic use
• Take active steps to reduce the use of pesticides and herbicides
• Prepare a water conservation and food waste reduction plan
• Research appropriate native shrubs and flowers and carry out pollinator friendly and companion planting.
• Investigate establishing a community composting facility.
• Identify and put in place a plan to eradicate invasive plant species.
• Identify areas suitable for ‘wilding’
• Repair gaps in hedgerows
• Identify areas suitable as ‘managed areas for biodiversity’
• Participate in BirdWatch Ireland’s Garden Bird Survey in Dec/Jan/Feb

a. Waterfall Village
• Improve visual impact of entrance to Waterfall Village from the west.
• Add extra Waterfall finger post signs
• Plant Ballinora Pippin apple trees
• Fit solar lighting to Waterfall Railway Bridge, plant 4 sides of the bridge
• Plant native and pollinator friendly shrubs in Waterfall Village
• Erect stone wall between railway bridge and Kent’s entrance
• Conduct a biodiversity, flora & fauna and pollination baseline study
• Paint field gates around Waterfall
• Replace Waterfall village post box
b. Ballinora Village
• Paint perimeter church and school walls
• Prepare a biodiversity, flora & fauna and pollination baseline study
• Erect a display board at Goblin Corner indicating A Natural Bird Sanctuary at this area.
• Install footpath in Ballinora Village from the bridge to the school
• Plant Ballinora Pippin apple trees
• Place 2 more flower boxes on bridge at bottom of hall hill
• Set up a working group to maintain the village on a weekly basis
• Repair the stonework on bridge at entrance to the village from Ballinora Cross
c. Jimmy’s Cross
• Install public lighting
• Cut grass on road verges, ditches and ditch walls on a regular basis.
d. Ballinora Cross
• Install public lighting
• Cut grass on road verges, ditches and ditch walls on a regular basis using strimmer.
e. Maglin Bridge
• Install public lighting
• Cut grass on road verges, ditches and ditch walls on a regular basis using strimmer.
f. Corbally Cross
• Clean area across from Corbally Graveyard
• Install public lighting
• Cut grass on road verges, ditches and ditch walls on a regular basis using strimmer.
g. Top of the World
• Erect 360 deg panorama photo of surrounding countryside
4. Safety & Security
• Offer property log-books to residents
• Install public lighting
5. Roads and Road Safety
• Identify and resolve repeat road flooding black spots around the parish
• Remove 2 trees at west side of Old Abbey Railway Bridge
• Build a pathway from Ballinora to Waterfall to Ballymah GAA pitch to Marymount bus stop via rural regeneration programme
• Put traffic management plan in place for the roads from Maglin to Jimmy’s Cross, Curraheen to Ballinora Cross and Ballymah to Waterfall
• Provide input to the current rural road speed limits review by Cork County Council
• Place convex mirrors at dangerous bends
• Erect kerbs near the wall at Inniskenny Graveyard and tarmac into the new kerbs
6. Communications
• Appoint an administrator for the community website/twitter/Facebook
• Publish a monthly information leaflet with information on events taking place in the parish
• Conduct a parish wide survey with assistance from SECAD
• Erect a ‘billboard’ in Ballinora ad Waterfall for use by organisations promoting ecents
7. Recreation
• Position seats at various locations along the heritage trail
• Develop Sli na Slainte walk in the parish – km marking, steps taken,Kcal burned
8.Infrastructure
• Investigate location and costs of 40+ seating meeting room with kitchen, toilets etc.


WILDLIFE, HABITATS AND NATURAL AMENITIES.
DRAFT FIVE YEAR PLAN
LOCATION
The area under consideration (see map Ref x) is located approximately 6Km. WSW of Cork City and is bounded to the North by the Curraheen Road (L2222) to the South and East by the Waterfall Road (L2203) and on the West by L2225 and L2220.It is located within the 2Km. National Grid Reference W66D and 50% of Grid Reference W66E covering an area of approximately 6 Sq. Km.

Little local knowledge exists as to the detailed Wildlife, Habitat and Natural Amenities and the biodiversive nature of our community and it is important that this awareness deficit be corrected, so that we can identify and contribute to arresting and reversing any biodiversity decline within our community.

Our aim is to correct this awareness deficit by examining its current state and investigating the means by which we can put a programme in place to highlight the current situation to generate local interest and a sense of community and involvement in the Wildlife, Habitat and Natural Amenities development over the five years of our plan.
It should be noted that various activities and planned objectives included within our five year plan will initially be beyond the competence of the local Tidy Towns team and other local interested parties.

To this end outside agencies will be consulted to provide training and education, for the school and local interested parties, to reach a degree of competence in the various requirements to execute the five year plan, in the longer term, with a reducing reliance on outside expertise.
Habitat Maps to Fossitt Level 2 will be prepared for the district to include a selected habitat to be mapped to Fossitt Level 3 in the first year of the plan. The local community and the school will be involved in the project on an ongoing basis and the farming community will be surveyed to gauge their potential involvement and interest in general nature conservation.

Our findings will inform our draft biodiversity plan which will be drawn up in year 1 of our plan and will be updated in the light of new information coming to hand over the following four years of the plan.

INTRODUCTION
Our five year plan is informed by:
 Cork County Council’s Strategy Report 2016-2020 Environmental Awareness Strategy 2016-2020 Item 6 Protect Our Biodiversity.
 All Ireland Pollinator Plan 2015-2020.
 A Guide to Habitats in Ireland J.A. Fossitt. The Heritage Council.
 The Bride Project Castlelyons Co Cork
 Local interests, school, residents, land owners.
 Tidy Towns submission.
 Tidy Towns Handbook.

Other considerations:
 Current requirements to reverse recorded general decline in biodiversity, the decline in the Food Web and the efficient functioning of the ecosystem.
 Minor adjustments to farmland management can cost the farmer little while benefiting wildlife considerably.
 Loss of farmland habitats dictates the need to monitor changes and to highlight ignorance of their consequences.
 Conserving mammals and the rest of nature boils down to habitat management

The five year plan is contingent on:
 Available funding where necessary.
 Availability of local interest, expertise (if available) and involvement.
 Availability of specialised expertise to provide technical input guidance and knowledge to implement the various planned projects.
 Local landowners involvement and permission to access their property.

Should circumstances dictate appropriate ongoing adjustments will be made to the five year plan.
YEAR 1 2019 AND CURRENT

 Continue construction and monitoring bug hotels, bat and bird boxes and locate them at appropriate sites and advise on cleaning procedures for bird and bat boxes.
 Continue to identify locations for planting appropriate pollen producing trees, shrubs and annuals to ensure continuous production of pollen in accordance with the issued plant list to align with The All Ireland Pollen Plan 2016-2020.
 Continue involvement of the local National School in Biodiversity, Green Flag initiatives etc. both in the school and the local area at large.
 Continue to increase our areas of expertise by involving outside agencies e.g. Cork County Council, Secad and The Bride Project and other institutions in training and education in the school and for local interested residents.
 Continue to create awareness within the school and the community of the richness of nature on our doorstep by arranging talks and walks by experts in their respective fields.
 Locate, identify and treat/eradicate invasive plant species under direction of an appropriate authority.
 Prepare digital habitat maps of identified habitats within our area of interest to Fossitt Level 2 with one selected habitat to Fossitt Level 3.
 Identify and preserve existing wildlife areas.
 Initiate training programme to increase local and school involvement in biodiversity activities to include species identification and reporting.
 Erect appropriate signage to identify the location and nature of the habitats.
 Provide training on habitat mapping and species identification to local interested parties and introduce the Schools Heritage Programme to the local National School.
 Establish base line data for flora and fauna etc. Within the habitat mapped to Fossitt Level 3.
 Identify indicator species within the habitats, recording their increase/decrease over time as an indicator of the health of the habitat over the period of the plan.
 Develop a preliminary wildlife conservation plan in consultation with the school and other interested parties.
 Publish initial findings, on our website, on the identified habitats and continue to issue invitations to locals to become involved in the bio project.

YEAR 2 2020

– Review the outcome of year 1 of the five year plan.
Continue to map habitats to Fossitt Level 3 and erect appropriate signage.
 Review wildlife conservation plan and adjust as appropriate.
 Survey local land owners to establish their views and interests on wildlife and non agricultural land on their farms e.g. Hedgerows, marsh areas, riverbanks etc and their concern for wildlife conservation.
 Provide landowners with advise (from an appropriate authority) on the likely consequences for flora and fauna and wildlife in general resulting from their farm management practices.
 Continue to plant appropriate pollen producing plants to align with the All Ireland Pollinator Plan 2017-2020.
 Establish species base line data for all habitats mapped to Fossitt Level 3 in 2019 and plan accordingly.
 Arrange for talks and walks, with the appropriate authorities, to study and inform on local habitats and biodiversity.
 Continue programme to increase local involvement in biodiversity activities.
 Consider the purchase of a camera for installation in one of the bird boxes.
 Incorporate a biodiversity trail with the existing walking trails within the parish.
 Update and publish details of progress, on our website, on habitat mapping and other items of note relating to the biodiversity project.

YEAR 3 2021

 Draw up a biodiversity plan with interested landowners on the basis of the 2020 survey.
 Continue to monitor and evaluate the quality of the mapped habitats and publish the results.
 Take action appropriate to the findings of the evaluation of the habitats.
Continue to monitor and record the occupation of bird and bat boxes.
 Plant up identified gaps within hedgerows with appropriate plants (with the permission of the landowner) aligned with the recommendations of the All Ireland Pollinator Plan 2017-2020.
 Purchase bat monitoring equipment train up volunteers in its use and conduct a local bat survey.
 Provide training for the school and interested parties, by an appropriate authority, on identification of various bat species.
 Continue education and training on appropriate biodiversity topics within the school and interested locals.
 Continue to publish results, on our website, of progress on the biodiversity project.

YEAR 4 2022

 Implement biodiversity plan with interested landowners.
 Arrange talks in the school and in the district at large on appropriate subjects highlighted by the progress of our biodiversity plan.
 Participate in the various surveys e.g. Birdwatch Ireland Survey, Bat Surveys Bat Conservation Ireland etc. which may be appropriate and complement the progress of the five year plan.

YEAR 5 2023

 Follow up on progress of the previous four years of the plan and correct any slippage if appropriate.
 Consider the reach of the biodiversity beyond the area covered by the five year plan.
 Publish the overall findings of the five year plan and rollover elements of the plan which have not been completed and if appropriate continue with a revised plan based on the knowledge accumulated over the period of the five year plan.

See photos of the Vintage event held during the summer: