A Natural Link: tree planting to mark an important educational partnership

Pictured at the tree planting at Hill of The ONeill Heritage Park are:  Brian Poots, NIFSA; Councillor Kim Ashton, Chair of Mid Ulster District Council; and pupils from St Patricks Primary School, Dungannon, Dungannon Primary School and Gaelscoil Aodha Rua..
Pictured at the tree planting at Hill of The ONeill Heritage Park are: Brian Poots, NIFSA; Councillor Kim Ashton, Chair of Mid Ulster District Council; and pupils from St Patricks Primary School, Dungannon, Dungannon Primary School and Gaelscoil Aodha Rua..

The fifth anniversary of the opening of Hill of The O’Neill & Ranfurly House Arts & Visitor Centre, was marked by the Chair of Mid Ulster District Council, Councillor Kim Ashton, who planted a young oak tree at the Heritage Park to celebrate the partnership between the Council and Northern Ireland Forest School Awards (NIFSA).

Councillor Ashton was helped by pupils from Dungannon Primary School, Gaelscoil Aodha Rua and St Patrick’s Primary School as the three schools have each taken part in the first year of Northern Ireland Forest School Awards educational activities on the Hill of The O’Neill.

P2 pupils from Dungannon Primary School have completed their NIFSA environmental programme and will soon receive their Forest Ranger awards. The classes from Gaelscoil Aodha Rua and St Patrick’s Primary School will begin their NIFSA learning activities in early November.

Speaking at this event, Chair of Mid Ulster District Council, Councillor Kim Ashton said, “It is very fitting that I am planting an oak tree to demonstrate the partnership between Mid Ulster District Council and Northern Ireland Forest School Awards. An oak tree symbolises strength and long life, and already this partnership has produced really strong educational results for local children and should continue to do so in the future.

“And on this very special day, the fifth anniversary of the opening of Hill of The O’Neill & Ranfurly House Arts & Visitor Centre, I wish our important and valuable centre continued success.”

For more information on the NIFSA environmental programme, or to make enquiries about any aspect of the Education Programme at Hill of The O’Neill & Ranfurly House, contact the Education Officer, Peter Lant at 028 8772 8600 or email peter.lant@midulstercouncil.org