Nocht Studio has collaborated with community groups in Killeagh, Cork, at Greywood Arts to co-design a pop-up gathering space for the May Sunday Festival 2024 in Glenbower Wood. Through dialogue with experts and the community, we've collectively explored nature-first principles to celebrate and envision a future of Glenbower Wood.
Our sincere thanks go to Benny Ennis and Elina Peltokoski of the Gaelic Woodland Project, Colm O'Driscoll of Lismore Castle & Gardens, Organic Growers of Ireland, and Jeremy Turkington of Hometree Charity and Anthony Kenneally of Kenneally Rochford & Associates for their invaluable insight and guidance in our journey.
The Seed Pavilion was open to the public from Friday, May 3rd to Monday, May 6th 2024, to celebrate the rich historical, cultural and ecological heritage of Glenbower Wood
Supported by Arts Council Ireland, Cork County Council, Youghal Credit Union, EirGrid and Age & Opportunity.
The above feature on The Seed Pavilion includes an interview with both Jessica Bonenfant of Greywood Arts and Philip Ryan of Nocht Studio. The piece was undertaken and prepared by Rachel Andrews for the Culture File segment of Lorcan Murray's Classic Drive on RTÉ Lyric FM.
In this short clip, Artistic Director of Greywood Arts, Jessica Bonenfant, speaks about this project and the May Sunday Festival, inspired by Glenbower Wood.
Many thanks to Jessica for inviting us to co-design a pavilion for this year's May Sunday Festival with such a wide range of members of the community including members of the Monday Club Active Retired Group, The Cope Foundation Midleton Centre, St. Fergal's National School, Transition Year from Pobalscoil na Tríonóide, artists from The Mór Collective and committee members of Glenbower Wood and Lake.
As part of the early stages of The Seed Pavilion project, we invited different experts that are proactively working with and within woodland to come and speak to the local community and the project participants as a form of participatory research. 
Our first guests were Benny Ennis and Elina Peltokoski of the Gaelic Woodland Project. The Gaelic Woodland Project is a registered voluntary charity focused on knowledge and skill sharing through afforestation initiatives and proactive invasive species management, particularly relating to cherry laurel, in native woodland.
Invasive species management is an integral part of any native woodland conservation and preservation initiative. Cherry laurel and rhododendron are both an ongoing issue in Glenbower Wood and we invited the Gaelic Woodland Project to come and assess the infestation; Benny and Elina gave invaluable insight into their “Meitheal” model where community building and cultural celebration are an integral part of their invasive species management works.
We hope to continue to build a relationship with The Gaelic Woodland Project as we continue to explore nature first principles through opportunities of combining invasive species management with cultural events and research through making.
In the early development of The Seed Pavilion project, we reached out to industry experts to harness their knowledge and provide direct insights to both us and the community. Colm O’Driscoll, Head Gardener of Lismore Castle Gardens, was the first person we reached out to and he has generously contributed his vast expertise and time to help guide the direction of the project. 
With a profound dedication to organic horticulture and craft gardening, Colm's approach to nurturing plants from seed and revitalising landscapes like the Airfield Estate in Dundrum exemplifies his commitment to the field. As a graduate of the National Botanic Gardens of Ireland, Colm has a rich background across diverse horticultural sectors, from landscape design to organic food production. Colm's passion for sustainable practices and community engagement shines through his voluntary role with Organic Growers Ireland, his insightful contributions to The Irish Garden Magazine, and his frequent lectures and workshops across Ireland.​​​​​​​
The Seed Pavilion name has come from the entire process that has lead up to the May Sunday Festival 2024. From Benny Ennis of the Gaelic Woodland Project, discussing the various mechanisms that invasive species disperse their seed through infestation; to Colm O’Driscoll of Lismore Castle Gardens and Organic Growers of Ireland giving insight into the importance of seed supply chains and resilience through diversity.
The last of these expert workshops was by Jeremy Turkington of Hometree, where his passion for seed collection and his fascination with the life cycle of trees and plants, from flower to seed to germination, inspired the establishment of a woodland tree nursery in Greywood Arts walled garden.
Jeremy Turkington is the Seed Collector and Seed Bank Coordinator of Hometree, a charity whose work is to establish and conserve permanent native woodland in Ireland, encouraging land regeneration and biodiversity through afforestation, restoration and education. Jeremy has an Honours Degree in Arboriculture and Urban Forestry and a foundation degree in Rural Development and Countryside Management. He is an arborist with 17 years experience across the ecological and  environmental charity and land based sectors in Ireland, specialising in ensuring genetic integrity of Forest Reproductive Material in Irish tree nurseries and fostering a consciousness of our indigenous trees and wild woodlands at local level. He has conducted research into improving biodiversity at a catchment scale without the use of subsidies.
The Seed Pavilion and the May Sunday Festival is supported by Arts Council of Ireland, Cork County Council, Youghal Credit Union, EirGrid, and Age & Opportunity.

Cinematography, photography, editing, sound, by Nocht Studio.
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