Kildalton 50 - Attractions on the Day
College Enterprises - Changes over the Years
Kildalton 50 aims to celebrate 50 years of Agricultural, Horticultural and Equine Education by bringing together past students and staff to reflect on the changes and celebrate the achievements.
We are currently busy planning an exciting day for our visitors which will include:
- Travel through time in the Decade rooms. Five rooms displaying photos and articles from each of the past five decades that help to demonstrate how the campus and enterprises have developed. This will be accompanied by a display in recognition of past staff in the main mall along with historical talks in the Conlon Theatre
- The historic Bessborough House will be open with displays in the main Boardroom, the Oak Room and the Bessborough room
- A walk through the historic estate grounds will give visitors an opportunity to see the Bessborough Estate Lake, gardens and historical woodland along with a Nature Walk and Scavenger Hunt for the younger visitors
- Historic talks at scheduled times
- Afternoon tea will be served on the lawn along with an Artisan Fine Food Village where visitors will have an opportunity to sample a selection of local Irish food products.
To mark the occasion a time capsule will be buried on site which visitors may wish to add mementoes to.
College Enterprises - Changes over the years
Kildalton is very proud of its modern educational facilities and substantial agricultural, horticultural and equine enterprises. Visitors will have an opportunity to see the enterprises on the day and reflect on some of the changes that have taken place in agriculture over the past 50 years.
- Dairy - The dairy unit will display the current dairy herd in the college and its enterprise objectives. It will also exhibit the progression of the herd since its establishment in 1978 through genetic gain, improvements in technology, facilities and a renewed focus on sustainability.
- Machinery – Machinery and the evolution of agricultural mechanisation has been at the heart of the dramatic change Irish farmers have witnessed over the past 50 years. As part of the event the current Kildalton fleet of modern agricultural equipment will be demonstrated alongside models from the past five decades. This will give a clear demonstration of how mechanisation has revolutionised agricultural output in Ireland. From canvas cabs to air-conditioned modular units, the tractor is the perfect illustration of how technology has changed.
- Beef – The Suckler Beef unit will showcase the various production systems, breeds and technologies currently used in this high performing herd while also tracking the developing of the college’s beef herd and associated facilities since 1971.
- Crops- During the last 50 years in Ireland we have witnessed a see change in arable crop production. From a time when mixed farming was common practice, to the current climate of specialist tillage operations, Kildalton has evolved to meet the educational needs of students by adapting the tillage enterprise, changing its cropping policy and focusing on best practice in sustainable crop production. On the day, the crops team will showcase a comparison of Spring Barley in the 1970’s vs todays crop.
- Sheep-The Sheep unit will demonstrate the various production systems, breeds and technologies currently used in this high performing early and mid-season flock. It will also reflect on the development of the colleges sheep flock as a reflection of how sheep farming has changed in Ireland since 1971.
- Horticulture – Visitors will have the opportunity to visit landscaped grounds and the extensive horticulture unit. Over the last 50 years the unit has evolved with the industry. All enterprises will be open on the day including the commercial nursery, fruit and vegetable production units, sport turf facility, cut foliage unit and protected crops unit. Some of the horticultural produce will be available for sale in the artisan village.
- Equine - See the native breeds of horses Connemara, Draughts, Kerry Bog ponies - demonstrations all day showing: Dressage, Young Horse Training, Olympian and Army ex-Kildalton student’s show jumping. Race horse to Riding Horse, Side Saddle and arena eventing. Visitors will also have an opportunity to try out their skills on the colleges’ state of the art horse riding Simulator.