Despite storm Barra keeping us all indoors for a time during the week, our workers still managed to get through a great deal of work. After segregating the litter and recycling at the allotment it was time to tackle the leaves and fill the compost bays. Following on from this, work continued stripping and cleaning the water tanker.


To get us all in the Christmas spirit, the Carrigrohane Union of Parishes is hosting the Christmas Festival Cork. 
There are lots of decorated Christmas trees with various themes for everyone to enjoy. Ballincollig Tidy Towns is delighted to be included in this lovely festival. The theme for our tree is “The Celebration Tree”.
We chose to celebrate Ballincollig Tidy Towns achievement of 9 gold medals in the SuperValu National Tidy Towns competition over the past 9 years (well 2020 was not included as there was no competition so I guess 10 years). Jacqueline, Kitty and Maureen did a lovely job decorating our tree showing replicas of all our 9 Gold Medals.
 Definitely a reason for celebration.
At the other end of the Carraig Centre a Craft Market is being held with carols by car light.
Full Details click here:



The litter pick last Sunday morning was well attended with 23 Volunteers and 6 Transition Year students. The TY students worked with 2 Volunteers gathering the leaves. The remainder of the Volunteers collected litter and items for recycling.
Because of the great turnout we were able to cover a very large area during the hour.
Welcome to Adam our newest Transition Year student. A welcome also to Dominik aged 6, our youngest Volunteer. He came and joined us with his mother Margorzata.
After the litter pick, the Volunteers gathered for a cuppa and were delighted to receive the lovely Christmas Hyacinths from Tudor Rose.
During the week we had several of our Volunteers collecting litter and items for recycling in areas of Ballincollig.
Along with the litter we collected one bag of cans and one bag of glass for recycling.


One of our Volunteers, Jarlath, was back out Sunday morning to finish clearing the leaves from the flower bed in front of Westcliffe. He also cleared the footpath.
Two Volunteers worked with the Transition Year students in Fr. Sexton Park for the hour. They did a great job and collected 10 one-ton bags and 4 half one-ton bags of leaves.
During the week 9 bags of leaves were collected from Carrigdene.
4 half ton bags of leaves were collected from the green at Willow Drive/Maple Lawn, Muskerry Estate.



Following on from last week’s newsletter, we take a look at more ways needing change in order to save our planet –
Reducing paper consumption is an integral part of preserving the planet. 35% of all global wood harvested are used to make paper. Deforestation is one of the main environmental problems faced in today’s world.
Paper is everywhere – from books and newspapers, to paper bags and wrapping paper. It accounts for 25% of landfill waste. Twice the amount of energy is needed to produce paper than is used in plastic production. Although more people are using electronics as a means of communication and business, more must be done to reduce our consumption of paper.
Paper Consumption facts –
Toilet paper accounts for 15% of deforestation worldwide.
Approximately 27,000 trees are cut down each day to make toilet paper.
It takes an average of 5 litres of water to produce one piece of A4 paper.
50% of business waste is composed of paper.
For every ton of paper produced, 380 gallons of oil is used.
Recycling 1 ton of paper saves 682.5 gallons of oil, 26,500 litres of water and 17 trees.
Despite electronic advancement, demand for paper is expected to double before 2030.
What To Do To Make An Impact –
When at home instead of paper napkins or paper towels use cloth napkins.
Reduce the amount of paper cups, bowls and bags that we use.
Use email instead of paper and change bills to e-billing.
Store files and notes electronically on computer or devices.
When buying paper purchase only recycled paper that is chlorine free.
Read books, newspapers and magazines electronically.
Buy products with the least amount of paper and plastic packaging.
Use both sides of printing paper before recycling it.
Sort and recycle all paper waste.
Support companies that use 100% recycled products.
Shop local instead of online to save paper, plastic and cardboard used for packaging.
If you work in an office encourage co-workers to reuse and recycle all paper products.
Lobby local schools and governments to reduce their consumption of paper products.
Noise pollution is unwanted or excessive sound that can have negative effects on human health and environmental quality. It is a nuisance and can be detrimental to our health. But did you know that it is also extremely detrimental to animal and fauna life. Excessive noise pollution can have harmful effects on humans, plants, animals, trees and marine life constantly exposed to it.
It is commonly generated from industrial facilities, highway, railway, and airplane traffic – as well as outdoor construction activities. It interferes with normal activities for humans, plants and wildlife – such as sleeping, conversation, and reproduction. Noise pollution affects biodiversity as animals retreat to quieter locations, abandoning the other plant and animal life that depend on their survival.
Facts about Noise Pollution –
According to the World Health Organization, excessive noise seriously harms human health and interferes with people’s daily lives.
Human noise can have ripple effects on long-lived plants and trees that can last for decades even after the sources of noise subside. 
Plants and trees rely on birds and other animals to deliver pollen from one flower or tree to the next, or to disperse their seeds – but many animals are adapting to the noise by changing their behaviour or moving to quieter locations.
The noise level of the Earth’s oceans has nearly doubled – resulting in an almost 16-fold increase in background noise.
What we can do – 
Turn off appliances and electronics when not in use. Keeping a tv on in the background adds to noise pollution.
Lower the volume. Turning down the volume reduces noise production as well as protecting yours ears.
Closing windows during noisy times and opening them during quieter times helps contain any noise we create.
Turning down our music in public and monitoring the levels in which we communicate can reduce noise pollution
Trees lower noise pollution so plant more trees.
Although one out of every three bites of food we eat is made possible from pollinating bees, bee colony collapse is on the rise. This is due to a number of environmental causes. Many species of bees are on the endangered species list. Our food system and our lives would look dramatically different without bees. Producing honey is just one small value bees bring to our food supply and our lives. A huge amount of agriculture depends on them for the pollination of vegetables, fruits and other fauna. Researchers reported that beekeepers lost just under 50% of their bee colonies in 2015 which was up from the two previous years.
Colony Collapse Disorder occurs when the majority of worker bees in a colony disappear and die. The queen bee and a few nurse bees are left behind to care for the remaining immature bees causing the colony to collapse. If this continues it is estimated that managed honey bees will disappear by 2035. It is believed that pesticides, fungicides and viruses are the leading factors behind this disorder.
Bee facts –
Of the 100 crops accounting for 90% of food eaten around the globe, 71 of those rely on bee pollination.
90% of the 369,000 flowering plant species are dependent on insect pollination.
Many factors influencing the decline of bees; include climate change, colony collapse disorder, habitat fragmentation and increased use of pesticides.
There are more than 20,000 distinct bee species around the world.
What we can do –
Do our part and make our home a chemical free zone for bees to roam.
Have a break from weeding. Let dandelions and other flowers grow in lawns so the bees have food.
Plant native and bee friendly plants in gardens.
Bees are not dangerous they forage flowers for the good of the earth.
Be informed – learn about bee colony collapse.
Start a bee colony they are surprisingly easy to maintain. Research what’s necessary to have a successful bee hive.
Plant a tree. Grab some seedlings and research areas that allow tree planting.
Although some flowers are still blooming in the planters at Eastgate, we feel that they have gone past their best. So we have decided to remove them over the coming weekend.
On Saturday morning a group of our Volunteers will take the planters to the allotment, empty and clean them in preparation for next year.
We hope that when they are removed Cork City Council will paint the railings in advance of Summer 2022.
To make them easier to move John, Adrian and Tony removed most of the blooms during the week. This was taken to the allotment for the composting.
Saturday morning 4 of our Volunteers spent three hours working on a new project. They strimmed the wildflower meadow on the bank of the Link Road and the result was amazing.
On Thursday John and Adrian raked the grass recently cut at the Wildflower Bank on the Link Road.
They filled 10 one-ton bags with grass which was then taken to the allotment for  composting.
Plans are already in place to put in some more wildflowers here in the coming year and we hope in time it will be a haven for bees.





For health advice and the most reliable up-to-date information, see the HSE coronavirus page:


A selection of pictures from the week