We were delighted to host a weekend workshop recently on The Inner Development Goals which was attended by a great group of people who wished to explore how to live more sustainable lives. Here are some photos from the event!
The Fuchsia Lane Farm Story
Stories can be personal, public, private or shared. Stories can be about beginnings, middles or endings. They can be linear, circular, predictable or unpredictable. Our story is about family and place. The land and space that we call home has been in the family since the late 1800s. Our Granary and Stables cottages are from that era and can be seen on the First Edition OS maps of 1840, just before the Great Famine. We are conscious that we became the custodians at that time and the land welcomed us. The land itself holds evidence of life from times long before that. Perhaps the land doesn’t think too much about who the custodians are. However, what happens to the land does matter. Fuchsia Lane Farm is part of the landscape, and provides the vista that we all wake to here each morning. Our farm has been the constant over the years, and if previous generations of Heenans could walk this land again, they would recognise fields, trees, hedgerows, streams and soil, that are all part of our story, and show evidence of many generations of life and love in this place. The same land, where in the early 1900s, our ancestor Mary Heenan, found a Bronze Age artefact, which was donated to the National Museum of Ireland.
Our place in time
Our landscape here on Fuchsia Lane farm can be traced back to over 25 million years ago when the land was covered by a shallow, warm ocean that teemed with life. Over millennia this changed to the resultant limestone ground which is now a fertile source of life containing fossilised evidence of this temperate ocean.
Ten thousand years ago the retreating glaciers at the end of the last ice age deposited boulders, shaped fields and soil types that we can still see today. Then Man started to make an impact and in time, Celtic tribes made their mark as they farmed the land in common with protective ring forts for their valuable cattle and harvests. New arrivals and new traditions from other countries arrived and field enclosures were created as an Anglo Saxon model became the norm. The landscape changed but the fundamentals were the same. Those who cared for the land were sustained. We have maintained this connection in continuing to use the old field names and also in the names of our cottages. Some of the field names include: the Ring Fort field, Starrs’ Garden, Sugar Garden, Hacketts’ field, Cows field, Callow, Lawn field, Hurling Field, Blackstick Field, Hollow field, Long Road, McLoughney’s, Round field. Our self catering cottages, which are available as holiday rentals, are the Granary, Lime Kiln, Stables and Lodge.
When we stand in our place, we are conscious of the previous generations who have cared for this piece of the earth, and when we stop for longer, we are conscious of those who will care when we are gone.
Today the landscape and earth are changing at a more rapid pace, and we need to consider the next chapter of the story. How will future generations document what we did in order to sustain and be sustained by this same land? This is now the story to be considered and explored. Our planet is now at a juncture. We look to the needs of the next generation and how best to begin this chapter.
Birr Vintage and Arts Festival 2019
Once again we are all looking forward to this fantastic week-long festival in the nearby town of Birr, Co Offaly. This long running festival celebrates the wonderful heritage of the Victorian town of Birr and has a full programme of events, shows, parades, competitions and fun activities for people of all ages.
The town of Birr is famous for the Castle, and its wonderful classical street architecture. It is just a 30 minute drive for our Terryglass cottages and is a great day out. Click on the link below for a short video of last years highlights
Snowtime in Terryglass
We are not used to getting much snow here and when we do get some we all become kids again. The last couple of days have caused us all to stop and remain at home as much as we can. Its a great opportunity to get some photos of the area and to enjoy the simple things such as a stove fire and home baking!
Canoes and Kayaks on Lough Derg!
We are so fortunate to be living close to Lough Derg, the largest lake on the River Shannon. This majestic lake has played a central part in the regions history and development. In ancient times it provided access to settlers and invaders alike, became a source of valuable fish for those living around the lake, then in early Christian times it enabled the early monks to settle and create places of learning on Holy Island and also Terryglass. Lovers of Ireland’s famous drink, Guinness, might be interested to hear that the lake also was a method of transportation for Malting Barley, grown by local farmers, which is an essential element in the production of the famous drink. Local farmers brought their harvest to the local piers along the lake and it was then transported in the famous Guinness barges up the lake and along the Grand Canal to Dublin. One of the local harbours in the area is Kilgarvan Quay and one can still see the old warehouse and winches used to load the sacks of grain onto the barges.
However the lake now has become a wonderful leisure playground for locals and visitors alike and a new enterprise has emerged at Kilgarvan Quay! A young energetic and sporting couple, Becky and Rueben, have established Lough Derg Watersports and provide canoeing and kayaking for individuals, groups and parties of all sizes and abilities along the Lough Derg Blueway. Guests can learn the basics, enjoy guided trails on the water and have lots of fun with their wonderful tutors! Full details can be found at loughdergwatersports.com and on Facebook and Twitter.
Career and Personal Change Life Coaching
Thinking about a career or life change but not sure where to begin? Invest in yourself by taking a Life Coaching Retreat with an award winning credentialed professional coach at an award winning rural retreat in the heart of rural Ireland. Niall Heenan, Career and Personal Change Coach, offers bespoke one to one and small group coaching based retreats at his rural idyll Fuchsia Lane Farm in Co Tipperary, Ireland. Avail of one to one confidential coaching sessions with Irelands Career Coach of the Year, enjoy the peaceful countryside with the quiet lanes, meditation space, artisan food from local producers and a warm welcome from the local community.
If you are interested email us at to arrange a Skype call niall.heenan, where we can discuss your needs under no obligation. Coaching retreats are bespoke and we endeavour to create the best experience for you at a fair price. Accommodation in is self catering cottages and coaching will take place on site. Food, flights, transport etc are extra costs
Previous clients have described their experience of a coaching retreat at Fuchsia Lane Farm as:
In choosing to work with Niall was one of the wisest, most empowering decisions I have ever made. From our initial phone call Niall offered a supportive reflective strength that established a manner of working which ensured I was able to move forward in a way that I was secure with. Niall’s ability to “hold” my sense of “not knowing” what direction my personal and professional life was going offered me the freedom to safely explore as many possibilities as I wanted, safe in the knowledge that what I came in with would not be damaged or broken further but that the hope of change would be created in the meeting. Niall’s skill of allowing the client set the pace, set the agenda and explore their own world, truly nurtures a person to reach their full potential. … a little over a year has passed and I have rediscovered what it means to be me. I have a strong sense of direction. I am proud of the work that I do and I am confident in who I am as a person Emer Meighan – Programme Manager Disabilities NGO
I decided to work with Niall for a full day and it was one of the best decisions I have made for myself and the business in seven years. Niall is … a master at nurturing, encouraging and expecting you to direct and lead the agenda. The result of this “Pure” Coaching approach was that I experienced profound learning’s and insights, crystalised intentionality around my business purpose and goals, unblocked inner obstacles, built up my own internal resources and had fun doing all of that too.
Another unique facet of Niall’s work is the dimension of landscape and environment that he brings in to his work through the opportunity to be coached at the rural location he has created in Tipperary. We worked together in nature at various intervals throughout the day, and the tranquil and beautiful setting added a cathartic and transformative quality to the work. Nadine McCarthy – Leadership Development & Executive Coach
After the sale of my business I realized I needed career coaching to re-establish my entrepreneurial spirit and get me headed back on a clear path again. I knew I wanted a calm setting far away from the stress and daily pressures of Germany including an English speaking coach who would listen emphatically and make me find my own answers. And in my search I discovered Niall Heenan in Terryglass, Ireland who filled all of these criteria. I stayed in one of his cottages and he coached me on my business ideas while I continued my writing and walked through the rural countryside.
Niall’s approach is “ non- invasive” – meaning, he allowed me to choose my own topic, set my own pace and discover my own answers. He guides; he doesn’t direct and that is what made our sessions so productive. Kim Moke Stage Consult Limited, Germany
Guests staying at our cottages can avail of a coaching experience over a weekend or longer stay. Niall Heenan is a qualified, award winning coach who works with people in the areas of career and personal change, increased effectiveness and business planning.
Niall’s philosophy of coaching is to create trust which allows the client to work on deep and sensitive issues. Observers and clients have described this as being an ’emotionally intelligent’ coach.
Coaching can help people create deeper understandings for themselves, their businesses or families. This occurs through allowing clients, when they wish, to explore deep and sensitive issues in a very safe and secure manner. This results in clarity for the client and they use this clarity to progress and take action.
The coaching experience takes place at prearranged times over the weekend or week and provides for time for the client to have the time to reflect, consider and journal their experiences. A typical weekend would consist of two sessions of about 1.5 hours each while a week long stay would allow for increased engagement.
To discuss the options in more detail email or call me on Skype at niall.heenan
Here at Fuchsia Lane Farm Holiday Cottages we believe that family time is vital. Our Lodge Cottage is perfect for larger family groupings and the Studio Room, with its own tv, bunk beds and futon, make it an ideal space for younger family members to chill and have their ‘own space’. However, many of us have very fond childhood memories where we lazed in a tent and watch the ever changing colours and patterns reflect off the canvas as we lazed and enjoyed the cosy heat that is typical of a tent on a warm day. With this in mind we welcome guests who want to pitch their own tent at the Lodge Cottage to afford themselves some extra space. We can also supply one of ours for you, if you wish.
In this way guests can have the freedom of a camping experience with the comfort of the cottage just a few paces away!
However, we don’t always supply Holly!
Portumna Forest Marathons
Portumna is a small town in the heart of rural Galway, just 10 mins drive from Fuchsia Lane Farm. The name Portumna comes from the Irish word Port Omna, meaning the landing place of the oak tree. So not surprisingly, perched on the edge of the quaint little town is a magnificent 450 hectacres of coniferous woodland of Scots Pine and Norway spruce. Portumna Forest Park is also home to a whole host of animals including Fallow deer and the red Squirrel. Every June, the agility of the wild animals in their natural habitat is mimicked by the ‘best of the best’ of distance runners from all over Ireland. In recent years participants have come from all over the world in their quest to find the ultimate Ultra marathon.
For more information and online entries visit http://www.forestmarathon.com/index.html
Midweek Breaks – Self Catering Cottage
September is our favourite time of year to enjoy a Midweek Break. Being the optimists that we are, we expect a glorious ‘Indian Summer’ and what better place to take a midweek break is there than the Lough Derg village of Terryglass and the area of Tipperary, East Clare and East Galway.
Here at Fuchsia Lane Farm Holiday Cottages we can offer a midweek break for a couple in one of our cosy cottages for two at the special rate of €180 for three nights. This rate is available for dates between Mon and Thurs during the months of Sept and Oct and subject to availabilty . We supply all linens, towels etc. You have use of the bikes, walks, woodland meditation space and of course the local pubs, restaurants and lovely lakeside villages.
If you wish to explore outside of the village, Nenagh is the largest town in the locality. Nenagh Castle and Heritage Centre are well worth a visit. You can sample local artisan food produce at the Country Market on Friday mornings and the Farmers Market on Saturdays. Local award-winning eateries and delicatessens during your day’ s sightseeing or shopping include, Cinnamon Alley, Country Choice, and The Pantry Café. The town also has a new public leisure centre with swimming pool, gym and town park with playground. You can enjoy other amenities such as an 18 hole golf club, tennis club, river walks and public library.
The Silvermines mountains and Upperchurch provide some wonderful walking trails and the Lough Derg Way and Hymany Way long distance routes are close to Fuchsia Lane Farm.
Hanly Tweeds is a long established family woollen mills producing quality fabrics and woollen cloths. It is a great place to pick up a unique article of clothing as the perfect gift!
Birr Castle and Gardens will entrance and entertain you for hours! See what was once the largest telescope in the world, view majestic gardens with plant species from all around the globe and let the child in you delight in the tree house. Birr town is a heritage town with magnificent architecture and great cafés and restaurants.
We recommend that you visit Portumna Castle and Gardens, The Irish Famine Workhouse and the wonderful tracks and trails in the Forest Park. Children will also love the playground in the centre of town. The tennis club also welcomes visitors.
Portumna 18 hole Golf Course is located on the edge of the town and there are also opportunities for horse riding and pitch and putt in the area. Pallas Karting is home to Europe’s largest Karting course and also offers the latest craze of Zorbing and other activities.
If you are tempted by the prospect of some retail therapy, Ladies Day boutique, owned by former Rose of Tralee, Muirne Goode, is the place to visit.
Horse riding and pony trekking are available in a number of centres. Agrimhill Horse Farm will bring you along quiet country lanes and along the banks of the picturesque Kylecrow River. Birr Equestrian Centre hold children’s summer camps and regular Sunday treks in the Slieve Bloom mountains.
The recent reintroduction of the White Tailed Eagles and their successful breeding on the islands off Mountshannon makes this lovely lakeside town a must see. While there, why not take the opportunity to visit Holy Island with local historian and guide, Ger Madden? We can give him a call for you!
If you are a lover of chocolate (who isn’t!), a visit to Wilde Irish Chocolates factory in Tuamgraney just outside Scarrif is a treat. Sample the delicious handmade chocolates and experience for yourself this award-winning confectionery.
Tuamgraney also offers the East Clare Heritage centre. This community-run centre is based in the 10th Century St Cronan’s Church, and provides a great insight into Ireland’s monastic past.
The sister towns of Killaloe and Ballina are an ideal place to spend some time. Lovers of good food, scones, coffee and all things nice will have to find some time to linger in The Wooden Spoon. Here Laura Kilkenny’s produce will demonstrate what happens when you put all your love for fine ingredients into your work.
Also in Killaloe James Whelan provides cruises on Lough Derg on his boat, the Spirit of Killaloe, and is a great way to experience the river and lake.
Heading north from Killaloe – Ballina, the Graves of The Leinster Men (signposted from Ballina) affords a panoramic view of the Lough Derg area. Alternatively, follow the Lough Derg Drive along the lake and stop at the viewing point, The Lookout, where you can take in the splendour of the majestic Shannon River.
The lakeside village of Garrykennedy is well known for Larkin’s Pub, another award-winning eatery! Local traditional musicians also favour this spot so you might be in time for a ‘Seisiún’, in addition to the weekly Sunday evening session from 7 to 9pm.
And of course, you can bring your doggie with you!