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12. 4. 2024
12. 4. 2024

Special Heritage Event on July 1st, 2023

Connemara National Park will be celebrating our twinning agreement with Terra Nova National Park, Newfoundland, Canada by undertaking a Heritage Event on Canada Day, the 1st of July 2023. We are delighted to invite you to this very special event.

In June 2019, the National Parks and Wildlife Service and Parks Canada signed a twinning agreement connecting Connemara National Park and the Derrygimlagh Marconi Wireless Station in Ireland with Terra Nova National Park and the Signal Hill National Historical Site in Canada. Similar landscape, flora and fauna and, as a result, similar conservation and heritage interests form the basis for the twinning of these two iconic National Parks.

See the full schedule of events listed below:

  • Between 10:00 and 11:45 Minister of State Pippa Hackett will be given a tour of the individual events taking place in the Park on the day. All are welcome to join. 
  • There are very strong Marconi connections between Ireland and Canada with the twinning agreement extending to the Marconi Wireless Station at our Derrygimlagh site outside Clifden with the Marconi Wireless Station at Signal Hill in St. John’s, Newfoundland. In the early 20th century Marconi had an office in what is now the Connemara National Park Administrative Building and spent his time in Connemara developing the duplex wireless communication system upon which all of our modern mobile phone communication is founded. Reaffirming these strong transatlantic links Minister of State Pippa Hackett will be unveiling a commemorative plaque to Guglielmo Marconi on the Administrative Building at approximately 12:00 am. The plaque is one of a series of plaques by the Commemorative Plaque Committee of Irishscientists.ie.
  • A Canadian flag raising ceremony accompanied by the Canadian National anthem will then take place.
  • Following the flag raising ceremony Minister of State Pippa Hackett will then open the ‘Before the Beginning’ Art Exhibition which celebrates the Connemara Pony Breeders Society 100 year anniversary. All 17 Connemara Pony daughter societies from all over the world as well as local and international artists have been invited to submit a piece of art celebrating the Connemara Pony. The exhibition will run until the end of the Clifden Arts Festival and the art pieces will then be sold with all the proceeds going to the Connemara Therapeutic Riding Centre. The Connemara Pony is a very important feature of Connemara National Park, which has played an important role in the breeding of these animals since Erskine Childers, the late President of Ireland, presented a herd to the State in the 1980s.
  • Throughout the day (10:00-17:00) a number of Heritage Demonstrations will be taking place which include:  Dry Stone Wall Building Demonstration | Basket Making |Traditional Hay Saving | Connemara Beekeepers Event | Pole Lathe Wood Turning Demonstration.
  • The staff in Connemara National Park have been instrumental in efforts to regenerate the Cladoir breed of sheep which was once found throughout Connemara but was pushed to the brink of extinction in recent years. The Cladoir sheep was known to have had fine wool which could be knitted or woven and was an important reason as to why the breed survived. To celebrate the importance of the wool for the regeneration of the breed, hand shearing of our Cladoir sheep flock will take place throughout the day with the wool processed on site in order to have a finished hand knitted garment by the end of the day.
  • Connemara National Park holds a number of Heritage Breeds which include: Connemara Pony; Cladoir sheep; Galway Sheep; Irish Maol Cattle; and Old Irish Goat. A representative of each of these rare breeds Societies will be on hand to talk about the importance of each breed.
  • At 14:00 a bus has been organised to visit the Connemara Therapeutic Riding Centre in Cleggan, a wonderful charity which uses the Connemara Pony as a therapy tool for people with disabilities. The bus will return to Connemara National Park at 16:00.
  • At 17:00 a talk will be given on the Connemara Pony by Mr Tom McLaughlin of the Connemara Pony Breeders Society.
  • At 18:00 a talk will be given on Marconi and his association with Connemara National Park by local historian Mr John Hannon.

For more information, please contact the Visitor Centre on 095 41054 or 087 2919721