Spring into summer on Carnmoney Hill

Explore the natural beauty of Carnmoney Hill. INLT 21-601-CON
Explore the natural beauty of Carnmoney Hill. INLT 21-601-CON

The Woodland Trust, in partnership with Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council, is inviting local residents to explore Carnmoney Hill.

A fun-filled afternoon - brimming with free activities - has been arranged for Saturday, June 6.

Participants can follow in the footsteps of Viking raiders and Victorians as they explore, settle and feast at this scenic part of Newtownabbey.

Included in the list of activities taking place between 12 noon and 3pm are arts and crafts, pond dipping, seed planting, traditional children’s games and a food foraging demonstration – with a chance to sample homemade pancakes – are on offer.

Those going along are invited to bring their own picnic so they settle down on a rug and dine al fresco.

Younger visitors to Carnmoney Hill will enjoy the chance to learn about the wildlife of the area and take a closer look at some special friends, who are under the care of TACT Wildlife Centre.

Those who come along can also take part in a guided woodland walk, or follow the clues to complete a self-guided trail through this fabulous woodland.

They will have the opportunity to journey through ancient woodland, discover the hill’s precious wildlife and history, and finish with spectacular views from the summit.

Michelle McCaughtry, people engagement officer with the Woodland Trust, said: “We hope that local people and visitors will join us for this special afternoon.

“They can relax with a picnic and then choose from the many activities on offer.

“Carnmoney Hill really is a natural treasure trove, with its fragments of ancient woodland and wildlife, from buzzards to long-eared owls.

“It’s rich in history too. Look out for the restored Victorian well, remnants of limekilns and the remains of a Victorian farmstead, which was recently unearthed thanks to the Belfast Hills Partnership.

“Less easy to find are the remains of souterrains: these underground tunnels were no doubt used as escape routes from Viking hordes.”

Parents should note that children intending to go to this event must be accompanied by an adult.

Visitors are asked to please wear suitable outdoor clothing and footwear to the Carnmoney Hill event.

The Woodland Trust is the UK’s leading charity championing native woods and trees. It has over 400,000 supporters.

The Trust has three key aims: to plant native trees and woods with the aim of creating resilient landscapes for people and wildlife; to protect ancient woodland which is rare, unique and irreplaceable and to restore damaged ancient woodland, allowing native flora and fauna to return.

Established in 1972, the Woodland Trust now has over 1,000 woods in its care covering approximately 20,000 hectares (50,000 acres).

In Northern Ireland the Woodland Trust cares for 50 woods. These woods contain a mix of recently planted woodland, mature woodland and ancient woodland.

The Trust has produced the first-ever comprehensive record of Northern Ireland’s ancient woodland - go to www.backonthemap.org.uk

To find out more about the Woodland Trust go to www.woodlandtrust.org.uk

To find out more about the Carnmoney Hill event, please contact Michelle McCaughtry on 028 9127 5787 or email michellemccaughtry@woodlandtrust.org.uk