KEEN gardeners and enthusiasts from as far away as county Antrim and Limerick flocked to Bantry to attend the second annual Charity Day at Ravens’ Oak Garden at Derryishal, in aid of international humanitarian medical agency, Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders.


Overcast skies and scattered showers were no hindrance to the dozens of couples and families who enjoyed guided strolls around Susan and Michael Cobley’s stunning garden.

“We were delighted with the turn out,” said Susan, “It’s fantastic that so many people travelled here to see the garden and to support Médecins Sans Frontières.  We raised over €600 which was way above our expectations.”



Raven’s Oak is located on the Sheep’s Head way and is part of the West Cork Garden Trail.  The garden is a relatively small site, just three-quarters of an acre, but is composed of many colourful rooms and secret corners, including a small wildflower meadow, a bold exotic area and a contrasting woodland area.

The layout of the garden, featuring reclaimed bog pine, was planned by Michael, who is also a keen bird-watcher.

“We designed the garden to attract and encourage wildlife.  Over 60 species of birds have seen here, including resident Choughs and Ravens,” he explained.



“It has been a really interesting and enjoyable afternoon chatting to people who are supporting our international medical aid work in crisis areas such as Syria, Haiti and South Sudan,” said Deirdre Mangaoang, Communications Manager of Médecins Sans Frontières who travelled from Dublin for the Charity Day.

Pictured with Deirdre, wearing the white jacket is County Councillor Mary Hegarty, Bantry Town Mayoress Kathleen Tessaman, Susan Cobley and friends.



“We’re a relatively new organisation in Ireland, so we’re delighted to have fundraisers like this and in such a beautiful setting as Ravens’ Oak. I want to say a huge thanks to Michael and Susan, and to everyone from the community and further afield who came along to support us.”



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To find out more about Médecins Sans Frontières,  see or call  01 660 3337.