The Heritage Council of Ireland recognised the dedication of individuals and community groups across Ireland to the preservation and promotion of Ireland's heritage at the National Heritage Awards 2018 and closing ceremony for the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018.
The Heritage Council announced Ireland's newest Heritage Hero, Eugene Dunbar from Co. Westmeath and celebrated some of the best Heritage Week and European Year of Cultural Heritage events from 2018 at the ceremony held iat the Royal Irish Academy, Dublin, on 6 February 2019. The special event at the Royal Irish Academy was attended by Minister of State at the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Seán Kyne TD and presented by RTÉ broadcaster, Mary Kennedy.
The Hidden Heritage Award was awarded to‘By hammer, lens and pencil' - Kerry Geo Adventures/Kerry County Museumshines a light on Ireland's hidden heritage. This award recognises event organisers who successfully explored lesser known aspects of Ireland's heritage during National Heritage Week.
The Heritage Communities Award recognises events that bring communities together to celebrate National Heritage Week and was awarded to ‘Creative Connections' - Crawford Art Galler.
The Cool for Kids Award was awarded to ‘The Master and the Mystery' - The Irish Workhouse Centre. This award recognises events that helped children learn about and enjoy heritage and encouraged children and families to participate in National Heritage Week.
As part of European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018 the new Le Cheile san Eoraip Award recognises event organisers who explore Ireland's heritage connections with other places in Europe. Three prizes of €1,000 are awarded to the organisers of events during EYCH 2018: ‘Peat Crossing Borderlines' - Irish Peatland Conservation Council; ‘An Exhibition of Kilrush Ceramics' - Kilrush and District Historical Society; and ‘A Taste Of The Past: Exploring Our European Connections' - Loughrea Medieval Festival.
The National Heritage Awards 2019 will be open for entries in August 2019.
Click here for a full list of award winners here.