The mission statement of Creggan Country Park is to: ‘…provide an integrated and innovative facility for all sections of the community, which also enhances the economic, social and environmental aspects of life for the multiply deprived community of the Moor District Electoral Area.’
Creggan Country Park’s working objective sets to: ‘..improve the quality of life of those living in the North West by providing quality recreation facilities, green space rich in biodiversity and innovative training and employment opportunities at Creggan Country Park.’
What we do
As a shared neutral green infrastructure space and outdoor adventure centre, the park combines to provide a platform for a programme of training and employment which addresses disadvantage by promoting inclusion and social cohesion at neighbourhood level. The park has four key priorities:
Protecting, managing and promoting the local environment
- Environmental education programme ‘Nature’s Classroom’
- Biodiversity and Green Infrastructure strategies led by Derry City Council
- Continuous improvements of the site through planting, regeneration of disused areas and regular inspections/clean ups.
Creating a healthy society
- Providing access to attractive green spaces
- Creating opportunities for outdoor recreation, particularly for families on low income
- Encouraging participation in environmental conservation volunteering
Promoting inclusion and social cohesion
- Ensuring access to new jobs and services
- Addressing barriers to inclusion and targeting disadvantaged communities
Promoting sustainable development
- Creating self-sustaining jobs
- Utilising renewable energy including; biomass boiler, a hydroelectric scheme and turf roof
- Providing ‘best practice’ visits to businesses, universities, colleges and international visitors
- Promoting energy efficiency to visitors and staff
- Environmental education workshop ‘Power from the Planet’
Activities on offer
We offer both land and water based activities including:
- 'Splash Sessions' - the city's first and only inflatable assault course on water
- Pier jump
- Paddle boarding
- Wheelyboat for wheelchair users and people with limited mobility
- Raft building
- Team building games
- Treasure hunt
- Self-led nature trail
- Nature Hub with hedgerow maze, games and outdoor classroom
- Free Environmental education programme 'Nature's Classroom'
- 'Go for a Dander' Walking Group for people aged 60+
- Free wildlife events all year round including our annual 'Wild Day Out Event.'
Now in its third year, the Park has continued to attract more visitors. Each year, over 1500 visitors took part in nature themed activities, canoeing, environmental art, orienteering, team games, wheelyboat tour and angling lessons in 2018. Wild Day Out 2019 will take place on Friday 12th July 2019 and will be a distraction event particularly for young people during times of heightened tension in summer.
Halloween, Christmas and Easter events provide additional opportunities for families and people of all ages to get outdoors to improve mental and physical health.
Free best practice visits are arranged regularly for community and corporate groups from across Northern Ireland. Creggan Country Park is a working best practice example of green infrastructure in action. During the best practice visits, our Environmental Officer presents a slide show on the history of Creggan Country Park, outlines activities, future plans and funders. Other topics include Renewable Energy, Environmental Education and Biodiversity followed by a tour of the facilities.
By providing an outdoor pursuits, education facility and green space we contribute to improving the physical and mental health and wellbeing of the community. We boost the local economy through tourism and job creation and support our young people and their personal development through recreation, volunteering and work experience.
As a neutral space venue, we are used by all sections of the community and continue to promote better cross community relations.
Meet Our Team
Gerry Quinn, Manager
Gerry has been instrumental in the conception and development of Creggan Country Park since 1980's.
Karen Healy, Environmental Officer
Karen has worked at Creggan Country Park since January 2007 and in that time has helped secure funding and manage a wide range of projects and initiatives including biodiversity management, environmental education, outreach programmes to elderly care home residents, personal development projects for young people, managing our volunteer programme and delivering good relations projects and event management throughout the year.
One of her first projects was to introduce the first formal environmental education programme in the city. ‘Nature’s Classroom’ continues to benefit over 2000 pupils in the city every year.
As our environmental officer, Karen has overall responsibility for creation and delivery of the habitat survey and management plan for the 100-acre site to ensure our activities do not interfere with biodiversity and to continually improve green spaces through various projects.
Karen is chair of the Moor Environmental Forum and is a strategic partner in the Local Community Plan for the Moor, Foyle Biodiversity Forum, NW Water Catchment Stakeholder Group and Green Infrastructure Stakeholder Group. Karen's background and qualifications:
- Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (Full member) MCIEEM
- MSc Environmental Management at University of Ulster · BSc Hons Environmental Science and Diploma in Industrial Studies with commendation
- Experienced project manager (15 years)
- Experienced education officer (13 years)
- Health and Safety
- First Aid
- Licensed bat worker and carer
- Walk leader ·ILM Volunteer Management
- TQUK Education and Training
Emmalene Edgar, Administrator
- Winner of 'Best Day Out' category at Northern Ireland Hospitality Awards 2018Winner of 'Best Day Out' category at Northern Ireland Hospitality Awards 2017Winner of Grow Wild Awards 2015, Creative Transformation Category
- Winner Junior Chamber of Commerce Awards 2015Best Social Economy at Social Enterprise NI Awards 2013
- Winner of 'Environment Category' at Derry City Business Awards 2010-2013Winner of 'Most Energy Efficient Community Initiative' at the Northern Ireland Housing Executive Home Energy Awards 2009
- Winner 'Environment Category' Derry City Business Awards 2009
- Runner Up in 'Natural & Built Heritage' Category at Pride of Place Awards 2009 – Creggan Country Park represented Derry at this year’s Pride of Place awards 2009 and was awarded runner up in the Environment category. Pride of Place is an all-Ireland competition which is directed towards recognising improvements by local communities to create civic pride in their area. The competition focus is on people coming together to shape, change and enjoy all that is good about their area.
- Big Green Challenge 2008 – Creggan Country Park’s project was chosen in final 100 projects (only 1 of 3 projects chosen from Northern Ireland)
- Winner 'Sainsbury's Environmental Organisation' category at Derry City Business Awards 2007
- Winner of BURA Community Inspired Regeneration Awards Jan 2007 – Creggan Country Park recognised for its work in identifying and tackling a wide range of social and environmental issues in the local community. One of only 3 winners in NI.
- Runner Up at the RSPB Environment Awards 2006
- Creggan Country Park’s environmental programme was chosen as a model of Best Practice Environmental Option (BPEO) for the Cityside South Regeneration Taskforce Neighbourhood renewal area (known as TRIAX) which takes into account the Bogside, Brandywell, the Fountain and Creggan neighbourhoods of Derry City.
Funders over the years - include logos
- Department for Communities
- The National Lottery Community Fund
- The National Lottery Heritage Fund
- The Fore RAFT Fund
- Live Here Love Here
- Halifax Foundation Northern Ireland
- Department for Foreign Affairs
- Peter Harrison Foundation
- Community Foundation Northern Ireland
- European Union Interreg IV