The 2016 Ellen Hutchins Festival in and around Bantry was as successful as the 2015 award winning Festival, and the decision has been made to make the Festival an annual event. This decision was made with the support of the Bantry Development and Tourism Association.
Eileen O’Shea of the Association says that “Bantry Development & Tourism welcome this now annual festival. We are pleased to be associated with the Hutchins family in recognising the first Irish female botanist Ellen Hutchins (1785-1815) remember her achievements, and walk in her footsteps. The festival takes place during Heritage Week in late August. This event is growing and is now part of the Calendar of Events for West Cork.” Eileen added “We look forward to working with the Bantry Historical Society, the National Parks & Wildlife Service and the Hutchins family in promoting and taking part in this wonderful event to commemorate Ellen’s work in natural science.” Plans for the Festival in 2017 (19 to 27 August) will be posted here.
Some members of the Hutchins family still live near Bantry, and others visit regularly from the UK and Australia. Four great great grand nieces and nephews of Ellen gathered in the Bantry Credit Union to view the Ellen Hutchins exhibition, and met with Finbarr O’Shea, manager of the Bantry Credit Union, and Eileen O’Shea, Chairman of the Bantry Development and Tourism Association, to thank them for their support of the Festival.
Julian Haskard, Bill Hutchins, Madeline Hutchins, and Arethusa Greacen, all relatives of Ellen Hutchins, with Eileen O’Shea and Finbarr O’Shea in the Bantry Credit Union.