Moyle Council supports “Heart of the Glens” landscape partnership programme

30 10 2011

Moyle District Council voted to support the Causeway Coast and Glens Heritage Trust’s project to conserve and celebrate the unique landscape of the Antrim Glens.

Ballycastle SDLP Councillor Dónal Cunningham said “The Glens of Antrim contain some of Ireland’s most stunning and
beautiful landscapes , I am delighted to support the plans to conserve and celebrate the unique natural and cultural heritage of the area”. CCGHT’s Helen Noble presented to Council an outline of the outreach and educational activities at the heart of the proposals, the project will reconnect the local community and visitors to the area with the landscape to secure its habitats and traditional features for generations to come.

Landscape Partnerships act as a catalyst to bring organisations and communities together to form partnerships that create a shared vision for the conservation and management of our landscape heritage, enabling people to tackle the heritage needs of their local landscapes in a co-ordinated and effective way. The Heart of the Glens scheme involves a portfolio of individual projects that deliver long-term social, economic and environmental benefits for the area.

The Glens of Antrim consist of nine spectacular glens on the Antrim Coast which run down to the dramatic cliffs, headlands and bays of the rocky North Channel coastline. The area is one of high scenic value, important habitats and vigorous community life. It is a popular tourist destination thanks to its distinctive farmsteads known as Clachans and traditional field patterns. The four coastal villages of Glenarm, Cushendall, Cushendun and Carnlough alongside the town of Ballycastle, all designated Conservation Areas, are home to the majority of the population of the Glens and each has its own distinct relationship with the glens.

The five year Heart of the Glens Landscape Partnership will conserve and maintain the special landscape character of the area and re-enforce the relationship between people and place through a series of individual projects. The rich natural heritage of the area will be conserved through a series of schemes to manage the woodland, conserve the red squirrel and improve the condition of the upland blanket bog habitat. Built heritage projects will include the survey and restoration of selected archaeological sites and heritage features such as the dry stone walls of the ladder farms.

The Landscape Partnership will reconnect the Glens community to the glens landscape through a series of events and activities such as a public art competition, food festival and exhibitions and talks. Working in partnership with local businesses and other organisations with an interest in the area, a number of learning and training opportunities will be offered on subjects as diverse as sustainable fishing and farming practices, hedge laying and whitewashing traditional buildings or traditional music and sport.

The Nine Glens of Antrim are
Glenarm – The glen of the army, the village of Glenarm is on the famous Antrim Coast.
Glencloy – The glen of the hedges, two miles north of Glenarm, with the village of Carnlough at its foot.
Glenariff – The arable or fertile glen, the best-known of the nine as the ‘Queen of the Glens’, sweeps majestically towards the village of Waterfoot.
Glenballyemon – Edwardstown glen, at the foot of which is Cushendall – more of less at the centre of the nine glens.
Glenaan – The glen of the colt’s foot or rush lights, a rugged glen – having the site of the legendary Ossian’s grave, on the Cushendall-Ballymoney mountain road.
Glencorp – The glen of the slaughtered, close by Glenaan and roughly parallel to the main road from Cushendall to Cushendun.
Glendun – The glen of the brown river, adjacent to Cushendun village; spanned by a viaduct on the main Cushendall-Ballycastle road.
Glenshesk – The sedgy glen, east of the town of Ballycastle, and sweeping towards the ruins of historical Bonamargy friary.
Glentaisie – Named after ‘Taisie’, princess of Rathlin Island, roughly west of Ballycastle and, like Glenshesk, close to the town.