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She Gathered Seaweeds on the Seashore

13 August, 11:30am - 1:30pm

Ellen Hutchins Festival

  • Whiddy Island
  • Co. Cork County

The session led by Frances Gallagher, aquatic biologist, and Carrie O’Flynn, historical re-enactor and period costume maker, starts on the strand by Whiddy Island’s pier at low tide. Explore the seaweeds and learn more about them. Hear about who would have been gathering seaweeds in the early 1800s and why they did so. You will see the clothing they would have worn and the baskets they would have used.

Frances will share her knowledge of Bantry Bay’s seaweeds and their uses as food and soil improvers. She will then guide you in gathering small seaweed pieces for specimens. As the tide comes in, you will move to the marquee by Bank House for a practical session spreading the seaweed specimens on paper with careful guidance from Frances.

Carrie will show the equipment that Ellen would have used over 200 years ago and there will be images of Ellen’s seaweed specimens and drawings to examine.

Hand lenses and microscopes will be available enabling you to see beautiful tiny details of the live seaweeds that are invisible to the human eye.

This event has funding from a Cork County Council Heritage Grant and from the Environmental Research Institute at UCC.

Free event, no booking required.

No dogs allowed. Ferries leave Bantry’s Main Pier at 11am, returning at 1:45pm, 3:45pm and 5:45pm. €6.50 return.



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