Category Archives: News

Community Information Event 31st May @ Ballyronan Marina Centre

Community Information Event 31st May @ Ballyronan Marina Centre

Lough Neagh Development Trust (LNDT) has scheduled three more community events, they are:

  • 31st May @ Ballyronan Marina Centre;
  • 6th June @ Washingbay Centre; and
  • 14th June @ Antrim venue to be confirmed.

For further information and to register your interest in attending simply click here.

 

We would encourage everyone in our local community to take an interest in this amazing opportunity for  Northern Ireland community ownership of the lough.  Have your chance to play a part and have a say in the future of Lough Neagh!

 

Why?  Because the future sustainability of the lough, it’s local community and numerous industries and businesses are at stake!  This is an unrivaled N.I. community ownership chance which offers significant benefits and returns, socially, environmentally and economically.

 

We would ask you to share and promote these community information meetings and join our campaign for individuals to become ‘a friend of Lough Neagh’. Click here to Become a Friend of Lough Neagh

Community EVENT 24th May @ Lough Neagh Discovery Centre

Community EVENT 24th May @ Lough Neagh Discovery Centre

INVITATION to Lough Neagh Development Trust Community Open Information Evening.  An amazing opportunity for Northern Ireland community ownership.  Have your chance to play a part and have a say in the future of Lough Neagh!

 

Lough Neagh Development Trust (LNDT) encourages the WHOLE Northern Ireland community to take an interest in the future sustainability and development of this natural resource and asset.  This is an unrivaled N.I. community ownership chance which offers significant benefits and returns, socially, environmentally and economically.  There are a number of ways you can become involved (read on)….

 

LNDT has organised a number of public information evenings to engage with all interested parties, key stakeholders and it is vital members of the community attend to express their own view on the future of the lough.

 

The first is on  24th May 2017 @ 19:30, Lough Neagh Discovery CentreEvent Registration Click Here

 

We would ask you to share and promote these community information meetings and join our campaign for individuals to become ‘a friend of Lough Neagh’. Click here to Become a Friend of Lough Neagh

Lough Neagh Partnership Supporting Development Trust

Lough Neagh Partnership Supporting Development Trust

Become a ‘Friend of Lough Neagh’

The Lough Neagh Partnership (LNP) has been one of the organisations leading on the process which aims to bring the entire expanse of Lough Neagh into community ownership. This ambitious project began with an extensive consultation process in 2015 and culminated in the facilitation of a wide group of stakeholder interests in the White River House Hotel in early 2016.


LNP is supporting the newly formed Lough Neagh Development Trust (LNDT) an organisation made up of the various interests around the Lough, to drive the aim of community ownership forward. Stakeholders articulated a vision addressing environmental, commercial, recreational, tourism and community interests ‘to bring about an internationally recognised, stable, sustainable, natural environment that supports communities through economic, social and recreational development.


The Lough Neagh Development Trust is working with the Earl of Shaftesbury, who is the current majority owner of the bed of the Lough and Lough Neagh stakeholders to develop this once in a generation opportunity and we need your support. We are all beneficiaries of this vital natural resource as we drink its water, eat its fish and build with its aggregates. Visitors from near and far enjoy and learn from its wildlife and natural habitats whilst others use it for recreation, education and science.


We are asking all members, colleagues, partner organisations and friends to visit the Lough Neagh Development Trust website www.loughneaghdevelopmenttrust.org , read the Trust story and register as a ‘Friend of Lough Neagh’. There is a facility to register as an organisation as well as an individual. LNP views the community acquisition of Lough Neagh as an opportunity to move current boundaries around asset ownership on whilst making a major statement affirming the community asset transfer concept.


Please lend your support – visit www.loughneaghdevelopmenttrust.org and click on ‘Become a Friend of Lough Neagh’. DTNI will continue to play a pivotal role in the process as we firmly believe that giving local people a stronger voice as owners of the Lough will result in better stewardship and will also help to realise the huge potential that the Lough has to offer local communities.

Lough Neagh Future Search Visual Minutes – October 2016

Lough Neagh Future Search Visual Minutes – October 2016

Lord Mayor presents ‘Visual Minutes’ to Lough Neagh communities following Future Search Consultation.

The Lord Mayor of Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Council, Councillor Garath Keating welcomed Development Trusts NI (DTNI) today, 25 October 2016, to a reception to handover a series of large ‘Visual Minutes’ at Lough Neagh Discovery Centre.  The Visual Minutes were created by a series of artists during a ‘Future Search’ conference on Lough Neagh, held earlier this year in Toome.  The reception completes a detailed consultation exercise with over 300 participants undertaken on behalf of the Department for Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD), to test the feasibility of a community ownership model for Lough Neagh (privately owned by the Shaftsbury Estate). Representatives from voluntary sector, community groups, business, local Councils, and statutory agencies participated in the consultation, which represented the entirety of the Loughs stakeholders.

The Lord Mayor, presented the three large Visual Minutes to representatives of Tidal Toome, Ballyronan Community, and accepted one of the pieces on behalf of Lough Neagh Discovery Centre.  A series of smaller pieces were also presented to a number of participants in the Future Search programme.

Commenting on the handover reception by the Lord Mayor, Chair of Development Trusts NI, Nigel Kinnaird, said;
“We are delighted that the Lord Mayor, Garath Keating, has kindly hosted this reception.  Lough Neagh is important to us all, it has a huge community of users, and many see it as an under developed asset. This detailed exercise, commissioned by DARD, now DAERA, looks critically for the first time at community acquisition on a scale not previously envisaged and its findings and recommendations reflect an intensive piece of work by all involved.  A new Board is now looking at the viability and commitment to establish a development trust to acquire, own and manage the bed of Lough Neagh.”

Development Trust Recommended for Lough Neagh – April 2016

Development Trust Recommended for Lough Neagh – April 2016

DTNI consultation recommends the establishment of a Development Trust for Lough Neagh.

Development Trusts NI (DTNI) will today, 29 April 2016, complete a seven month consultation exercise undertaken on behalf of the Department for Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD), to test the feasibility of a community ownership model for Lough Neagh (privately owned by the Shaftsbury Estate).

The intensive seven month programme of work involved engagement with over 300 participants including users, stakeholders, communities and businesses who engaged in a series of meetings, public events, and a ‘Future Search’ conference held earlier this year.  Common areas and commitments were made by stakeholders across habitat, economy, tourism, community vision, recreation, navigation and waterways safety, and the need for good governance for Lough Neagh. All involved in the process agreed that consideration should be given to the management and acquisition of Lough Neagh by way of the establishment of a Lough Neagh Development Trust.

Commenting on the report and its recommendations, Chair of Development Trusts NI, Nigel Kinnaird, said;
“Lough Neagh is important to us all, it has a huge community of users, and many see it as an under developed asset. This report looks critically for the first time at community acquisition on a scale not previously envisaged and its findings and recommendations come at the end of an intensive seven month period of work.    We are heartened by the level of support we have received along the way, and the willingness by which individuals, communities, public and private interests have engaged openly and debated vigorously the proposal brought forward for investigation.  This involved considering the viability and commitment to establish a development trust to acquire, own and manage the bed of Lough Neagh.

This document is just the beginning. We must now encourage stakeholders, communities, local authorities and statutory agencies to incorporate these management recommendations into their forward work programmes, thus securing a sustainable and bright future for the Lough Neagh Wetlands”, Nigel concluded.

Future Search Conference – Lough Neagh Feb/March 2016

Future Search Conference – Lough Neagh Feb/March 2016

Minister applauds ‘Future Search’ Conference initiative exploring community ownership model for Lough Neagh.

Development Trusts NI (DTNI) today, 2 March 2016, welcomed the Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD), Michelle O’Neill MLA, to close a three day ‘Future Search’ Conference which was designed to explore the potential of a community ownership model for Lough Neagh.  This important event, which was held in Toome, close to the shore of the Lough, was attended by local community interests, both central and local government agency representatives, private sector stakeholders and environmental organisations who are interested in conservation and the preservation of the wildlife which the Lough supports.

In September 2015, DTNI, who work to empower communities through assisting them to explore community ownership models and asset based development, was tasked by the Minister to investigate both the local interest and the feasibility of a community led ownership model for the Lough.  Since then, the regional support organisation has been working with all of the key stakeholders to establish if a local ownership model could provide a platform for the sustainable development of the Lough in a manner which would benefit those who use, live or are based around the Lough.

As part of the work DTNI facilitated four Community Consultation events attended by over 200 stakeholders from the areas around Lough Neagh before Christmas.  The Conference has been led by renowned American practitioner and co-developer of the Future Search methodology – Sandra Janoff, and former Northern Ireland Permanent Secretary, Aideen McGinley.  Working with 64 local stakeholders since Monday, the meeting of diverse interests associated with Lough Neagh has scoped the needs and aspirations of all the sectors and stakeholders around the Lough.

Commenting on the success of the ‘Future Search’ Conference, Chair of Development Trusts NI, Nigel Kinnaird, said;
“Lough Neagh is important to us all, it has a huge community of users, and many see it as an underdeveloped asset. To date our engagement has been very positive, with a series of meetings, and consultation events being held locally in and around the Lough.  This week’s Future Search Conference attended by 64 key local influencers all of whom have a stake in Lough Neagh, has provided the community with an opportunity to examine the potential a future vision for the Lough.  We continue to encourage those who reside, work, engage with or are passionate about the Lough to be part of our work on this.”

Closing the Conference, the Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development, Michelle O’Neill, MLA added:

“Despite the potentially competing interests involved in and around Lough Neagh I am delighted that a shared vision for a community led future operation and management of the Lough has been agreed.

“One of my priorities as Minister has been support for development of the Lough which will present real opportunities for rural tourism and economic progress not only for those communities which are directly adjacent to the Lough but throughout the North.”

The Community Ownership approach being considered for Lough Neagh has been applied successfully elsewhere. In Scotland, for example, a number of large privately owned estates have been successfully transferred into community ownership and are now being managed sustainably by local people for the benefit of local people. Economic, social and environmental benefits for local communities have followed.

Lough Neagh Community Consultation – Nov 2016

Lough Neagh Community Consultation – Nov 2016

13 November 2015

Community invited to consultation on developing Lough Neagh community ownership.

Development Trusts NI is hosting four Community Consultation evenings to engage local communities on the future ownership of Lough Neagh, starting later this month.  Development Trusts NI, who work to empower communities through asset transfer, has been tasked by the Department for Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) to investigate the feasibility of a community ownership model for the Lough.  The group wishes to establish if it might provide a platform for community development to benefit local communities who engage with, use, live or are based around the Lough.  As part of this work Development Trusts NI is undertaking a series of Community Consultation events during November and December.

Commenting on the Community Consultations planned for Lough Neagh, Director for Development Trusts NI, Charlie Fisher, said;
“Lough Neagh is important to us all, it has a huge community of users, and many see it as an underdeveloped asset. We have been asked by the Department to investigate the feasibility of a community ownership model for Lough Neagh.  As part of this investigation, we are holding a series of local Community Consultation events.  We want to encourage those who reside, work, engage with or are passionate about the Lough to come along and be part of it. We want your views, they are important to our work, and indeed, Lough Neagh’s future.  It is crucial that communities are part of this important development – local people and the communities around the Lough should use this opportunity to contribute to the debate to bring Lough Neagh forward for the community.”

The four Community Consultation events, which are open to everyone, will be held at;

  • Washing Bay Community Centre, Tuesday 24th November 7pm – 9pm
  • Clotworthy House Antrim, Thursday 26th November 7pm – 9pm
  • Lough Neagh Discovery Centre, Tuesday 1st December 7pm – 9pm
  • Ballyronan Marina Centre, Wednesday 2nd December 7pm – 9pm

“The Community Ownership model approach being considered for Lough Neagh has been used successfully elsewhere. In Scotland for example a number of large privately owned estates have been successfully transferred into community ownership to be managed by local people for the benefit of local people. Economic, social and environmental benefits for local communities have followed.  All of this adds to the importance of the communities around Lough Neagh joining in the consultations planned for November and December.  We want everyone to contribute.” Charlie added.