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Sustainably Slow – Final Update

The stage is set!

Sustainably Slow begins today at 11.00am and I would advise any one planning to come, do so this morning as the forecast isn’t all that bright for later in the day.

It is an open air event and tentage is limited so come prepared!

Parking will be interesting, but the soil is on gravel and well drained! However, David Deasy is on standby with a tractor or two!

There will be a well placed Snail going the right direction as you approach Timoleague; just follow him!

Our Internet TV broadcast may not be very good! I have has problems trying to get a Director/Producer/Presenter/IT person for the day, but something may be visible at http:/ 

In the afternoon when the rain comes, it may cease altogether!

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The Famous West Cork Electric Car!

Last night, I had to make a journey to the Mealagh Valley, east of Bantry, to collect Quentin Gargan’s Electric Citroen Berlinga to bring back to Ummera for Saturday’s Sustainably Slow day. The orignal plan was for someone from 103FM, our local radio station to do a live broadcast from it as it was driven to Bandon. However, last minute changes meant that I had to go and collect it!

And what a great drive back I had; my left leg totally redundant, and a fuel gauge that started at 100% and was at 40% when I got back to Timoleague; top speed wouldn’t break too many records, but then no one passed me!

Did you know that 100 years ago there were more electric cars than petrol driven ones! To see some of the extraordinary story about “Who Killed the Electric Car”, click here.

The forecast for tomorrow isn’t quite what we hoped for, but the morning should be fine; but forecasts are only forecasts!

So tune into 103FM West Cork (103.3FM) today to learn more about Saturday’s Sustainably Slow Day!

[tags]electric car, quentin gargan, mealagh, timoleague, slow food, bantry[/tags]

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Sustainably Slow

On July 28th, Ummera will be hosting a Slow Food event, Sustainably Slow, at the smokehouse at Inchybridge, Timoleague.

There will be a number of small artisan producers displaying, tasting and selling their products. There will also be several organisations and companies who are involved in matters of a sustainable nature, solar panels, wetland construction, vermicomposting, permaculture, wind and hydro power.

It should be fun! The weather should be good!

All are welcome and if you would like to exhibit or demonstrate something sustainable, please let me know as soon as possible.

I have recently discovered our GPS address: N51.6626319 W8.7738981 so now you have no excuses!

The Courtmacsherry Festival begins that day, with their Regatta in the late afternoon so come prepared for the Greasy Pole!

[tags]Slow Food, Solar, vermicomposting, wetlands, hydro[/tags]

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Trains, Dublin and dining à la Butler’s Pantry

Up at crack o’dawn on Wednesday morning to catch the 7.30am train to Dublin. Had breakfast on board, sausage, hash, mushrooms, a rasher and a pot of coffee and toast at a cost of €14.50. The rasher was good, but otherwise not very exiting.

Returning on the 8.00pm train the following night, I was uncertain about IrishRail’s capacity for dining. Having spent the much of the last 36 hours in three of The Butler’s Pantry shops, Clontarf, Sandymount and Mount Merrion Avenue, and seeing so many people buy their lunches and dinners ready prepared and cooked in The Butler’s Pantry Kitchen in Bray, I decided that I would dine à la Butler’s Pantry on the way back to Cork and here was my menu:

Starter: Asparagus, Cherry Tomato and St. Tola Goats Cheese Tart

Main Course: Ham Quiche with a Mediterranean Salad

Desert: Lemon Soufflé.

Drinks: Crinnaghtaun Pure Apple Juice

Ok, so the total cost was €21.50, but compared to the €15.00 for the breakfast the previous day, it was worth every penny, and I can see why Eileen Bergin’s creation of The Butler’s Pantry 20 years ago has survived and indeed has gone from strength to strength. Perhaps The Butler’s Pantry might plan their next shop at Heuston Station, or better still take over the catering concession on Iarnrod Eireann!

[tags]The Butler’s Pantry, St Tola,  Iarnrod Eireann, Crinnaghtaun Pure Apple Juice[/tags]

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The price of fish……

The UK Daily Telegraph’s Magazine section today carried an article by Rose Prince about Ummera and our position on the wild salmon situation this year. If you missed it, then it can be read here , although the online version is missing some of the photos (including one of me, headless!!).

As with any article, there is the odd howler! Rose writes about Jonathan “butchering” the salmon when clearly he is filleting them!

[tags]Daily Telegraph, wild salmon, Rose Prince, Argideen[/tags]

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Bandon Farmer’s Market

One year old this Saturday apparently! Someone bring a birthday cake!!

Ummera is reluctantly having to  move out of its pitches at both Bandon and Kinsale; it is too time consuming for me, and Ralph and Alastair have got full time “proper” jobs now – so no more easy casual staff!

I do say reluctantly because one of the joys of the markets is the meeting of people who enjoy their food, and who are quite happy to tell you what they think of ones own products, sometimes good, sometimes bad, but always constructive and helpful. It gives us, the producer, to try out new products, variations and get instant feedback.

But Ummera’s products can now be found in shops in Bandon (Urru and Martin Carey’s) and Kinsale (The Quay Food Shop, Fishy Fishy and Ship to Shore), and hopefully our vacated pitches will be snapped up by newcomers who have fresh exciting products to tempt the public with.

David Peare of the Quay Food Shop  also has a stall at the Kinsale Market and he will be carrying our smoked products; in Bandon we have not finalised anything yet, but I’m sure that we will be tempted up for the special occassion!

We will be there this Saturday……

[tags]bandon market, kinsale market, farmers’ markets, Quay Food Shop, Urru, Martin Carey, Fishy Fishy, Ship to Shore[/tags]

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There’s no such thing as a free…….bath?

Well there is, sort of! Two weeks ago we installed a 30 tube solar panel on the roof of our house and the sun has shone every day!

We now have seemingly unlimited amounts of piping hot water, and the oil burner is turned off; admittedly the immersion heater comes on first thing in the morning just to give it a quick boost so that my shower (and three others) is hot, but that’s all!

Having just watched Prime Time on RTE just now on the state of global warming, surely one of the sanest things government should do would be to insist that solar panels be fitted on all new builds; they should also insist that  every house has a way of storing and using rainwater.

Have a look a  for some really good sound information and you too might have a free bath!

[tags]solar, rainwater,ecologics, solar panel[/tags]

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Slowfood Road Show

There was a very successful Slowfood roadshow last Tuesday at the Kinsale Farmers’ Market. RTE brought the sunshine along with their cameras and will be screening some footage on the Six-One News tomorrow, Saturday March 31st. The Farmers Journal was there also covering the morning.

The purpose of the roadshow was to let people know a little about who and what Slowfood does, and to recruit new members. Check out the websites at and to discover more and to sign up!

[tags]slowfood,slow food,kinsale,farmers’ market,six-one,rte,Farmers Journal[/tags]