Kollaborative Kinsale – how good could it be ?

If you’re reading this, chances are you care about the town of Kinsale and probably have some questions about what it will be like to live here in 2030 if we don’t fix the traffic, find a use (and a sugar daddy) for the decaying Town Hall,, and make it possible for staff in local businesses to afford to live in their own town !

In the last 20+ years I’ve come to believe that Kinsale is not just the gourmet capital, and home of a mad number of Young Scientist award winners, but that we have in our midst, both the people and the resources to create a thriving and sustainable Future Kinsale that the kids will be proud of.

Never has it been easier to start a business, or raise funding for all manner of projects, or get connected, and yet we have done little (OK nothing !) to tackle climate change, the wealth divide, or just the local traffic and waste pollution.

From the birth of the Transition Towns movement in our own back yard, to Strong Towns in the US, to Kinsale scale cooperatives in small welsh towns, and the growth of technology coops in UK, we are surrounded by opportunity

Earlier this year Forbes published one of several articles explaining how the ‘sharing economy’ has only just got going, and how, as communities, we could all gain so much from looking after ourselves and our resources in new and very different ways.

It doesn’t take a young scientist to know there are enough cars owned by Kinsale residents to take you anywhere at any time – but they’re just mostly lying idle in driveways and car parks. We have unused public buildings and spaces, and a bunch of great ideas for their use, but the entrepreneurs, the creators, and the financial experts, aren’t able to come together. We live surrounded by the most perfect land for growing healthy food, but we still buy cheap white bread baked 100 miles away and water in plastic bottles !

So, what if we set up a cooperative that could take ownership of, and manage public assets like the Town Hall, or even the “SuperValu’ car park, for the benefit of the community ? A cooperative where membership is open to all residents. A cooperative where the aim is to be a thriving healthy community, and to share the amazing resources we have – people, money, land, buildings etc – for the benefit of all.

There is a statue in our town of Peter Barry. Arguably the last person to dare to dream about a great future for his Kinsale. And we’ve been benefiting from his legacy for the last 30+ years. Now we probably need to renew the vision for a Future Kinsale, and one which goes beyond just being a ‘gourmet capital’.

So come and join us 6pm Jan 25th 2019 Trident Hotel, and be part of the conversation. We don’t have a town council any more, but we can have a “Town Hall” meeting

Environment and Sustainability – project planning

Contributors: Elizabeth Creed (acting coordinator), Tara Shine, Madeline Murray, Andy Ashford, Piluca Garcia

A vibrant and resilient economy is based on societal well-being and can only exist in a healthy environment. A key learning from the survey carried out by ‘Inspired by Kinsale’ was the priority given by respondents to both, looking after our environment, and how we plan for our sustainable future.  We may not talk in ‘zero or low carbon’ terms, but 76% of the respondents believe that Kinsale should be at the forefront of climate action.

Echoing the Citizens’ Assembly recommendations to the houses of the Oireachtas in 2018 there is a recognition that we need to do things differently; and that our vison of a sustainable future must determine the actions we now take across all sectors. What we do, and how we do it over the next 12 years, is going to impact, more than any other time in history, the ‘place’ we leave for future generations. 

As a town we understand that this pillar of environment / sustainability isn’t an isolated pillar but needs to underpin our vision for Kinsale and all the projects been undertaken under the ‘Future of Kinsale’ banner.  We have identified four sectors not covered by the other pillars – food, waste, energy and biodiversity. We will look at these.  But firstly, we’ll acknowledge what we have been doing already so we can build on it:

  • Tidy Towns has worked for over 40 years to promote Biodiversity in the area. 
  • Kinsale College was the birthplace of the global Transition Movement; the Permaculture course is internationally recognised.
  • Transition Town Kinsale has been working towards our low carbon future since 2005 across many forums.
  • Plastic Free Kinsale created momentum in 2018 looking at how to reduce our use of single use plastics
  • Kinsale Environment Watch has been lobbying for many years in the Cork area.
  • Table 1 outlines activity already ongoing under the headings, food, waste, energy and biodiversity.

The first project we will undertake is awareness raising and education which will empower us to recognise and take the actions to create our sustainable future.

  • Food:  Where do we get our food from? Could more be sourced locally?
  • Energy: How could we be more energy efficient? Could we power our own town?
  • Waste: Where does our waste go now? How could we reduce our waste?
  • Biodiversity: What steps can we take to protect the biodiversity of the area?

Workshops will give us the opportunity to explore where Kinsale is now, and where it could be if we take action, or where it would be if we make no changes to how we live our lives.  Finally, to achieve success across the projects undertaken by ‘Future of Kinsale’ we have to:

  • Engage with each other, reach consensus as to what we want to achieve, acknowledge the risks and benefits while understanding that some of the work we undertake may bring with it some disruption temporarily! This initiative needs to earn what is described as its social licence.
  • Work with the decision makers within Cork County Council, and other state agencies, towards participatory engagement, and decision-making.

Activities ongoing, and some proposals, under the sectors; food, energy, waste and biodiversity.  We hope to build on these and we would love to see more people getting involved with their ideas and their energy to get things done. Apologises for any omissions (this is a working draft!)

Community Groups Databank information

Hi, We’ve agreed within the new Inspired By Kinsale initiative to collect and store profile information on Kinsale’s community groups, and to make their profiles available to residents and visitors through Kinsale.ie.  Whether you represent a sports, arts and culture, history, spiritual, minority, hobby, political or other community (not for profit) group, you should participate in this publicity.

Please also email this to other people you know who are responsible for administering community groups.

Please complete this information in a Word document and email it to inspiredbykinsale@gmail.com together with up to 6 images for your community group (and a caption for each) – these need not be more than 0.5MB each as they will be resized for Kinsale.ie.

Contact information

Name of group:

Number of members (if there are membership fees, please list ‘paid-up members’):

Name of current Chair

Name of current Secretary/membership contact

Email address for contacting the group

Postal address for contacting the group





About the group

Outline in up to 100 words the role of this group.

How often does it meet?

Where does it meet normally?

How many years has it been in existence and why was it set up?

What, if any, are the criteria for membership of this group?

What are membership costs?

What external funding does the group receive – we don’t need financial details, but would like to recognise the agencies which provide grant funding etc (please attach any logos for support organisations)

Is the group affiliated to any regional, national or international groups?


If the group focuses on an event/events each year (eg a festival), what are the dates of the 2019 events?

Where/when are listings of individual programming available for the 2019 events?

Outline in up to 300 words the activities which the group has been involved in during the last 12 months. Festival events – please describe in general terms rather than listing individual programming.

Other relevant information


Kinsale community databank – Project outline

We would like to build an online resource for the local community under the domain kinsale.ie, some of which can be open to visitors and some which would need to be password protected. The proposed Kinsale Community Databank will combine feeds from existing sources of local information (eg Golden Pages, LinkedIn, Facebook, Google Maps, MeetUp, etc) and new content. In order to build this, we will need to commission some software development work and recruit a ‘Data Ambassador’ to encourage supply, collate and upload content – especially local directory content. It should include:

  • An historic archive – structured to allow browsing, and including images and text. Volunteer historians are sought to develop the content for this.
  • A ‘living archive’ based on contributions from residents and those with a special relationship to Kinsale. This will be based on the My Kinsale book content with updates and adding video and audio files. We would like to extend this project along the lines of An Duchas https://www.duchas.ie/en/cbes, and will apply for Creative Ireland funding to support this work. Volunteer researchers and recorders and sought to help capture content locally.
  • A skills database driven by referrals to allow users to look up and rate people’s skills/refer friends – this will build on the ‘Recommendations’ section of Kinsale Noticeboard and establish an ongoing reference source – specific skills (eg plumbing) and past experience (eg worked in traffic management). To avoid GDPR concerns, this will need careful planning and systems architecture. In order to populate this in the first instance, a survey will be carried out to collect skills information.
  • A portal to The Kinsale Co-operative Society online ‘banking’ services – more on this to come.
  • A Community Groups section which profiles each of the established Kinsale groups, of which there are about 20-30, and allows for news to be added. A volunteer is sought to contact all groups with a standard form for content provision and to collate this section.

In order to move this project forward, IBK would like to engage with potential sponsors/donors in the region to help fund the work and those who could access corporate support (eg in providing CRM and project management). We would also like to engage with school and college students to set up projects to collect local stories, podcasts/videos and to digitise/annotate photo collections.

What you say you want for 2019

A proper board walk along the quay from the tourist office to trident hotel

Clean sludge from harbour so there can be water at low tide and fill in 30 meters of harbour onto existing car park for more car parking1

Safe cycling paths, foot paths, no parking in town centre, youth cafe, amenities for teenagers,1

For dog owners to pick up their dogs poo,and bin it.🐾🐾🐾🐾🐾1

Motor home parking like Cobh1

Safe coach park near town for our valued tourists.1

Somewhere that accepts household waste ..for a fee ….for caravaners and short term holiday home visitors..I often hear them asking for one.1

Pedestrianised – improve road signs1

Sort parking out. Should have been done 20 years ago.1

How ? Any suggestions? that can’t be explained in less than 10 words 😂.1

Footpaths. Allowing young and old to walk safely into and out of town, school etc.6

Moto parking!2

(Safe) Walking routes. For people to get from their homes to the schools/to work; for tourists to walk to historical sites and out along the head lands. ‘Walking buses’ for school kids within walking distance of schools to decongest roads in the morning. Pedestrianization of some town areas. Refill water fountains. Segregated bins. A civic amenity site that works better. BROWN BINS for everyone entitled to one.3

A small shuttle bus taking in the rural areas not serviced by bus eireann.
Dunderrow, Jagoes mills, browns mills, Charles Fort, the dock, the new developments by the old marsh. None of these are serviced by any form of public/private transport.
Many tourists coming are left to the mercy of taxis to visit iconic areas like Charles Fort and many of the historic sites around the countryside.
Elderly people unable to drive would also be able to avail of this service as well as many more living in rural areas that don’t have cars.
Taxis are great but if you live in dunderrow it’s 20 Euro round trip.
Something to consider as a service or as a business for someone.

 Bicycle parking rack..?4

A community resource centre.

Better car parking facilities close to town and pedestrianise as much of the town centre and Main Street as possible. Agree that high rise parking doesn’t have to be ugly. With a little imagination it could look quite cool. There are a few ideal locations that this could happen4

A loop road around the town.

Loo friendly Kinsale…. ?3

Affordable housing…4

Pedestrian Zone (friendly) downtown.1

Bigger Playground/ skateboard park and facilities for families and children in Kinsale.6

Just for our family to be there to enjoy this wonderful place2

Car park,covered bus station,pedestrianised streets!!!!! Roofs above pubs,no more wet chairs and tables,less litter on streets-> more bins,cinema,indoor playground1

Definitely a better traffic system through town & around the town.5

Additional parking , within a cool landmark piece of architecture which both respects and adds to the look of Kinsale architecturally . Easier parking = more footfall = vibrant town center , and interesting architecture creates interest in a place . A car park can in theory have any type of exterior – who says they have to be ugly functionalist lumps of concrete . I think a Neo-Gothic style might be cool ? Any alternative suggestions out there ?

Free parking. Essential to keep business in town7

Incentives to stop the youth leaving the town

No cars on main st from Bank of Ireland to Fishy Fishy would be amazing!9

I don’t think that would work Barry as buisness would suffer, especially Butcher shop. No one wants to end up carrying heavy bags .2

 for the butchers you could have a brief stop loading bay. The rest of the businesses on that street are tourist related and would be happy I think?2

 I would like that too but as we are already short of parking and there is no spare space in that area it doesn’t look like a runner .