Spanish Point Community Group
Mission & Values
Spanish Point Community Group was formed in 2015 with the aim of enhancing our area for the local residents and visitors to the area. There are forty- five volunteers who work in a variety of different ways to promote the social, environmental, economic and general development of the area through a series of sub-committees. We work with Clare County Council, Clare Local Development Company, An Taisce, Clean Coasts, Tidy Towns, Rural Social Scheme, National Parks & Wildlife Service, and local businesses to further our aims. We are an established group in the area with several successfully completed projects.
These include provision of an outdoor gym, design/production of historical and environmental information panels, and development of walking routes with explanatory leaflets. We also developed an audio guide titled ‘Spanish Point – Its History and Heritage’, created this website, built flower beds and organised annual summer events e.g. barbeques and nature walks at the beach. We communicate regularly with all residents of the area by newsletter and/or social media.
Tidy Towns is a national organisation that encourages communities to improve their local environment and make their area a better place to live, work in and visit. It creates a sense of place for those living in the area
It is a voluntary organisation that builds a sense of community for those who have pride in their area and hope to maintain it to a high standard. It focuses on seven key areas:
- Community: Planning & Involvement.
- Streetscaping & Public Places.
- Green Spaces & Landscaping.
- Nature & Biodiversity in your locality.
- Sustainability: Doing More with less.
- Tidiness & Litter Control.
- Residential Streets & Housing.
Spanish Point Tidy Towns is a subcommittee of Spanish Point Community Group so whether you are interested in biodiversity, sustainability or litter control, there is an opportunity for you to give a hand.
We meet every Tuesday evening at 7.30pm for one hour from March to September and do some gardening, litter picking or whatever needs to be done. Look out for people in hi-vis jackets near the beach/school gates area. Or please let us know if you’d like to join us!
It is also a way of meeting up with the people from the area. Tidy Towns provide the resources such as litter bags, pickers, high-visibility vests and gloves. Clare County Council also support us by removing the litter.
The Clean Coasts Programme works with communities to help protect and care for Ireland’s coastline, seas and marine life. Our Clean Coasts Group is also a subcommittee of Spanish Point Community Group. We undertake different activities in our quest to protect our Special Area of Conservation and Special Protection Area. We hold regular beach clean ups and stabilise our sand dunes by planting marram grass and erecting wattle fencing. We also design and erect environmental and biodiversity signs and make videos to raise awareness of the importance of sand dunes to a beach area.
We have also worked with Axa Insurance, and Coca Cola, as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility programmes, while they seek to embrace environmental responsibility to offset their carbon footprint.
In August 2022 we hosted an ‘Explore Your Shore’ educational workshop provided by National Biodiversity Data Centre and Dave Wall. This proved very popular with both young and old and gave a detailed insight into the flora and fauna to be seen on the rocks and in the rockpools in Spanish Point.
Our Clean Coasts Officer, Dara Devers, assists us with our Clean Coasts projects e.g. Clean Coasts Week, the Big Beach Clean weekend, Clean Coasts Ocean Hero Awards, Clean Coasts Road Show, #2MinuteBeachClean, Think Before You Flush, and the Clean Coasts Corporate Volunteering Programme.
Pride of Place
The Pride of Place competition celebrates the extraordinary voluntary work of communities all over the island of Ireland. Spanish Point Community Group was formed in 2015 with the aim of enhancing and promoting our area for locals and visitors alike. It has represented Clare County Council in the Islands and Coastal Communities category of the Pride of Place competition in 2018 and 2021. Spanish Point Community Group was honoured to represent County Clare and to receive runner-up awards on both occasions.
The judges observations noted…
” There is a sense of history all around which translates into Pride of Place. This is shown in the vibrant community embodied in Spanish Point Community Group. Spanish Point has been a popular holiday destination since the first decade of the nineteenth century.”
Our Community Group: Completed Projects
In addition to this website the following completed projects were carried out by Spanish Point Community Group since 2015, our mission being to enhance Spanish Point for all the community and visitors to our area.
- Installation of three Entrance Stones at the entrances to Spanish Point
- Liaised with Clare County Council regarding the design for the refurbishment of the Lifeguards Station and Toilets at the seafront.
- Installed seating on the decked and green areas at the seafront.
- Designed Waymarked Walking Routes and Walking Leaflet for the community and visitors.
- Revamped and maintained the Kelp Burning Pits which were part of our heritage.
- Renovated the Spanish Armada stone at the seafront including engraving the story of the Spanish Armada on the granite cap stones.
- Spanish Point represented Clare in the national final of Pride of Place competition in 2018 and 2021 in the Island and Coastal Communities category where we came second each time.
- Every year three Litter Clean Ups are carried out at the beach and all the surrounding areas by the local community and visitors to the area.
- Entered discussions with local councillors and T. D’s regarding Coastal Erosion in Spanish Point, funding was secured, and Coastal Erosion Protection work was carried at two areas in Spanish Point as a result.
- Installed seating and stone flower tubs on walks in our area.
- Enter Tidy Towns competition and gain extra points each year.
- Carry out maintenance on all outdoor wooden seating and picnic tables each year.
- Created a Famine Memorial Garden adjacent to the seafront which is maintained with additional shrubs and plants added every year.
- Installed a stone picnic table at Tuama na Spáinneach for the centenary of the saving of the crew of the Kelp ship by local men.
- Installed a story board at Tuama na Spáinneach giving the history and geology of this area.
- Installed new Information Boards at the Lifeguard station.
- Members attend workshops on recycling and composting.
- Refurbished the carousel at the seafront.
- Installed an outdoor exercise area with exercise equipment at the seafront.
- During the Spring/Summer season one evening a week is set aside for weeding, beach, and approach road clean-ups.
- Created a wildflower garden with a Bee/Bug hotel in situ.
- Liaised with Clare County Council on improving the existing footpaths and lighting, also installation of new footpaths, pedestrian crossing and public lighting. All this work has been completed as part of Active Travel initiative (National Transport Authority).
- Produced an Audio Guide to Spanish Point relating the history and heritage of Spanish Point accessed through QR codes. There are fourteen different points at various locations, a map is available for one to follow the route. This project was funded by the Heritage Council.
- Installed a lectern giving the history of the Atlantic Hotel (the largest marine hotel in Britain and Ireland from 1809 to 1954) whose partial ruin is still visible at the seafront.
- Repaired natural stone walls in our area.
- Installed walkway over Dough stream at beach providing safe access for all to the toilets at the seafront.
- Installed a decked walkway to give safe access to the beach for local community and visitors when Dough stream is in full flow.
Spanish Point Community Group,
Co Clare, Ireland.