Waterford News

The government announcement of a €500m Disruptive Technologies Innovation (DTI) Fund has been greeted with enthusiasm at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) which is one of the key partners in a Disruptive Innovation-themed conference under way today.

Amplitude, which runs in Waterford’s WIT Arena on 3 October 2018 is led by research centres in Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) and Institute of Technology Carlow (IT Carlow).

Speaking ahead of the Amplitude conference, a new conference aimed at businesses and innovators which will demonstrate how availing of Government funding to collaborate with researchers, Dr Richard Hayes, Vice President for Strategy at WIT, said: “We welcome the creation by government of the Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund. Given WIT’s expertise in this domain where we are industry and academic leaders, the opportunity exists to attract a significant body of this funding to Waterford and the region. Indeed, more than this, the opportunity exists now to redefine the city and region as technologically advanced and technologically ‘smart’. Technology should define what we do and how we do it and we have the chance now to position Waterford as Ireland’s leading smart city.”

The DTI fund announcement was made recently by Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD, Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development, John Halligan TD and Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen TD.

Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development and Waterford native, John Halligan, who launched the Amplitude conference stated: “The Disruptive Technologies Innovation Fund will allow us to take research that is being performed in both the public and private sectors in such areas as healthcare, energy efficiency and sustainable agriculture and develop new solutions from that research, helping to build an ecosystem around disruptive technology and innovation and creating new markets for our enterprise sector. We have top-class enterprises and researchers in this country and I want to see proposals under this Fund that involve collaboration between industry, colleges and public sector bodies. Combining their strengths, successful project partners will help us to build new markets and tackle important societal challenges for the benefit of the people of Ireland.”

Dr Hayes referred to the recently published WIT Strategic Plan 2018-2021. “WIT has put technology strongly into its strategy for the coming period, building on the existing strengths of the college. In particular we aim to increase our activity in digitally-enabled and enhanced teaching.”

“This is just one example of how technology should increasingly be central to what we do,” Dr Hayes continued. “This thinking needs to permeate everything in the city and region. Already in WIT we are at the cutting edge in smart agriculture, in augmented and virtual reality, and other areas.”

King of the Vikings

Established in 2002, Travellers' Choice awards are the highest honour TripAdvisor can bestow. The only travel industry awards based on millions of reviews and opinions from travellers around the world, these annual awards reflect "the best of the best" for service, quality, and customer satisfaction, from hotels and accommodations to destinations, attractions, and even brands and products.

Travellers' Choice award winners are selected annually based on feedback from millions of TripAdvisor members. Travellers' Choice awards single out not just popular choices, but truly exceptional ones that keep travellers coming back. This award is our highest recognition and is presented annually to the top 1% of businesses across select categories.

The King of the Vikings is also the #1 Attraction on TripAdvisor for Waterford city too!


Winterval17 03Winterval, Ireland's biggest Christmas festival that is taking place in Waterford city, welcomes an exciting new Santa experience this year.

Tickets for this never-before-seen Santa attraction at Ireland’s Christmas Capital are now on sale at www.winterval.ie. The full programme of events for the 7th annual Winterval — running from 17 November to 23 December — will be unveiled in mid-October.

Waterford event creation specialists, Momentum Events, will create an ‘Enchanted Christmas’ Santa Experience at the Old Sorting Office, Custom House Quay for Winterval 2018.

New Festival Director, Tommie Ryan said: “We are delighted to be working with Momentum Events, who bring years of experience with them to create an all new Santa experience at Winterval 2018. The Enchanted Christmas attraction will be in the old post office at Custom House Quay, in the heart of Waterford City, and only moments away from the festival market.

“Not only will children meet Santa himself, they can enjoy storytelling with Mrs Claus and get involved in an exciting narrative, by helping the elves find Santa’s missing sleigh. A truly immersive and enchanting attraction, we invite both young and old alike to experience the magic of Christmas at Winterval.”

Bookings for festival favourites, Winterval on Ice at the Gasworks, Waterside; Winterval Express Train; and the Horse Drawn Sleigh, are also now open at www.winterval.ie.

The ‘Enchanted Christmas’ Santa Experience is priced €17 per child accompanied by up to two adults. Both the Winterval Express Train (€6 adults and €5 children) and Horse Drawn Sleigh (€7 adults and €6 children) feature a festive tour through the heart of Waterford’s historic city centre.

The full Winterval 2018 programme, which will include some exciting new additions, will be unveiled in mid-October. The majority of events will be free-of-charge.

For full details, visit www.winterval.ie or visit:


CIPD South East Regional Committee cordially invite you to the launch of our 18/19 Events Calendar.

As is tradition we will kick off with our Employment Law Breakfast which will be held on Wednesday, 17th October 2018 at 7.30am in The Woodlands Hotel, Waterford with our loyal sponsors Hartley People.

This event will be beneficial for HR professionals, line managers, start-up companies and any professional wanting to keep up to date with employment legislation. You will also have an opportunity to network, gain CPD and raise your profile.

Let Adrian Twomey of Jacob and Twomey Solicitors provide you with an update on recent and pending developments in employment law while you enjoy a coffee and croissant. Among the issues that he will be opening our eyes on are:

  • The Employment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2017;
  • The new Code of Practice for Determining Employment or Self-Employment Status;
  • The impact of GDPR and the Data Protection Act 2018 on employers in Ireland;
  • Developments in relation to retirement ages and pensions;
  • Recent developments at the WRC; and
  • Noteworthy recent decisions in employment cases.

There will be time for a Q&A at the end. We will also be looking for your feedback in relation to our proposed next event.

Bookings: https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/employment-law-breakfast-cipd-south-east-tickets-50112782682


The Psychological Society of Ireland (PSI) is delighted to bring the Society’s 2018 Autumn Winter Public Lecture Series to Waterford. On Thursday 27 September at 6.30pm, Dr Cíara Losty will present a free public talk at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) to launch the PSI’s 2018 Lecture Series. The talk, entitled Applying Sport Psychology to Your Daily Life, is free to attend and will take place in the Auditorium on the main WIT campus.

Dr Cíara Losty is a lecturer in Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology in WIT and is accredited as a Professional Member by the Irish Institute of Sport Professional Quality Assurance Committee in the area of Sport Psychology delivery. She is also an Associate Member of the PSI’s Division of Sport, Exercise and Performance Psychology. Through her work with various Irish Olympians, and other athletes competing at a high level, Cíara has gained excellent insight into the mental skills and techniques used by athletes.

Cíara will draw on her expertise to explore how performance psychology teaches athletes, and the general public, techniques on how to harness their strengths and manage their emotions. In sport, athletes and players often call on their mental skills training to manage pressure, aid focus, enhance their performance consistency, and to handle loss and disappointment. Cíara will explore how such skills can be applied to non-athletes and everyday life. Cíara states: “We all have an area in which we want to excel. This free public talk will focus on how we can apply some of those skills used by athletes into our own daily lives and practices in order to enhance our overall well-being”.

This is the first time that a PSI Autumn Winter Public Lecture Series talk will be held in Waterford. Earlier in 2018, WIT hosted the PSI’s Psychology Matters Day which proved to be a hugely successful event. PSI CEO Terri Morrissey states: “With WIT offering two undergraduate Psychology courses accredited by the PSI, the Society is keen to run various public events in Waterford, and in other areas around the country where PSI accredited Psychology programmes are being run. WIT was a wonderful support when the PSI’s Psychology Matters Day initiative took place there in May of this year, so we are delighted to once again be working with WIT in offering the free public talk on Thursday 27 September. The aim of PSI’s free public talks is the make Psychology more accessible to the general public and to create an awareness of psychology in our everyday lives”.

For more information, and to book a free place at the talk, see www.psychologicalsociety.ie.

WIT Light it Up Gold 2015Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) is hosting its fifth annual event to raise awareness of childhood cancer and to raise funds for The Childhood Cancer Foundation.

The Golden Moments Afternoon Tea event runs from 3-4pm on Tuesday, 25 September 2018 in the Tourism & Leisure building on the WIT Cork Road Campus.

Every September the Childhood Cancer Foundation runs a campaign called Light It Up Gold. It is part of an international awareness campaign as research into childhood cancer is grossly underfunded.

Light It Up Gold is marked at WIT because back in 2013 three mothers working in WIT all met on St John’s Ward in Our Lady's Children's Hospital with their children.

One of these mothers is Janet O’Neill. O’Neill, who is organising the event this year says that her aim is to increase awareness of the supports available to families affected by childhood cancer. “We want to help other parents who may have this ahead of them as well as those whose children are in treatment so they know what services are out there, and that there are people they can turn to. Siobhan, whose son was diagnosed six weeks ahead of mine, was my peer to peer. It is amazing what a head start six weeks give.”

Her colleague Siobhan Drohan who has been involved with Light It Up Gold for a number of years notes that as well as raising awareness of services, fundraising is an important factor as research into childhood cancer is hugely underfunded. “Any money raised at the event will be donated to the Childhood Cancer Foundation. We will have a raffle and gold pins will be on sale - the gold ribbon is the international symbol for childhood cancer.”

Local families that have been affected by childhood cancer will be in attendance as well as staff and students. The idea behind ‘Golden Moments Afternoon Tea’ is for everybody to take a moment out of their busy schedules and consider how they can support each other.

On the day there will be speakers and entertainment including: a parent will talk about her daughter’s experience fighting leukaemia; Noel Connors, Waterford Hurler will talk about why he wears a bead of courage; students are volunteering to help out on the day and read a poem related to childhood cancer; a survivor of childhood cancer and her sibling will perform Irish dancing; there will be some tunes from a choir; there will be face painters and nail artists from Waterford College of Further Education; fun science activities from Calmast and colouring in for the kids. There will be a raffle and gold pins will be for sale.

As part of Light it Up Gold the Tourism & Leisure Building is lit up at night in gold, as well as the WIT homepage and other websites.

ArcLabs WITThe New Frontiers programme for early stage entrepreneurs is still taking for applications for its 8-week programme starting in September 2018. While most places have been filled, there are still a number of places left for suitable applicants.

New Frontiers is for potential entrepreneurs who have a well thought-out innovative business idea or an innovative technology that has the potential to be developed into a scalable high potential start-up company.

New Frontiers Programme Manager at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT), Eugene Crehan notes that there have been more company formations in the first few months of this year. “Despite the buoyant jobs market, the increase in company formations indicates people are still interested in pursuing their own business ideas and using their talent to create viable products and successful companies.

“The time commitment for Phase 1 is one evening per week for 8 weeks, starting in September. This is a good investment of time for people already putting in long hours and late nights to put their skills and expertise to use for their own benefit. As Phase 1 takes place in the evenings it is ideal for working people who want to investigate their start-up idea over a few months.”

Phase 1 of the New Frontiers Programme will commence in Waterford at ArcLabs, the innovation hub based on WIT’s West Campus in September 2018 on a part-time basis, with Phase 2 commencing in December 2018. There are a small amount of places left for Phase 1, says Crehan.

In 2016 Enterprise Ireland announced increased supports of early-stage entrepreneurs over five years across the south east region with funding of €2.7m to run New Frontiers programmes in Waterford and Carlow Institutes of Technology. 

Early-stage entrepreneurs from across the south east with three hours a week to spare are invited to apply for the 8-week New Frontiers programme immediately. Applicants apply online at www.wit.ie/newfrontiers.

The Commission for the Regulation of Utilities (CRU) has announced its decision to expand the scope of the Registered Gas Installers (RGI) scheme to now include all installers and qualified professionals working with gas in commercial and industrial settings.

The existing RGI scheme requires any person who wishes to carry out gas works that are to be used by a domestic customer, by law, to register as a Registered Gas Installer (RGI) with the RGII.

The expansion of the scheme to include non-domestic installers will require all professionals working on non-domestic gas works to register to have their qualifications validated prior to finalising scheme entry requirements. It is expected that the new regulation requiring mandatory registration of Non-Domestic Gas Installers will commence in January 2019.

The extension of RGI scheme to include Non-Domestic Gas Works follows extensive consultation with stakeholders and will promote higher safety standards for commercial consumers.

Consumers should only use Registered Gas Installers to carry out both domestic and non-domestic gas works from this date. By using an RGI, customers can have confidence that they are dealing with a trained installer who has the required expertise in gas safety to ensure their gas installation is safe.

Any installers that carry out either domestic or non-domestic gas works after this point who are not registered with the new RGI scheme, will be subject to prosecution. It is a criminal offence for any individual or company to undertake Domestic Gas Works if they are not a Registered Gas Installer. The CRU regularly carries out investigations of domestic gas works and has successfully prosecuted over 20 cases in the last three years.

The scope of the RGI scheme will be extended to include Non-Domestic Gas Works in 2019 and will include pipework, space heating, hot water, catering, laundry, power generation and Combined Heat and Power (CHP) installations.

It should be noted that submitting provisional registration details will not guarantee acceptance onto the mandatory register when it opens in 2019.

The CRU’s Commissioner for Energy Safety and Chairperson, Dr. Paul McGowan said: “The regulation of Non-Domestic Gas Installers will improve public safety. It will give confidence to consumers that the Installers are competent, insured and subject to inspection to ensure their work is undertaken to the required standards.

It will also standardise the training requirements to become a Non-Domestic Registered Gas Installer. The opening of a provisional register for Non-Domestic Gas Installers is an importance step in extending the RGI scheme.

This is a positive development that will provide domestic and now non domestic customers with an additional level of comfort and peace of mind that the gas works being undertaken is being done by a qualified and registered professional.”

For more information please contact the RGII at 01 499 7998 or visit www.rgii.ie.

Non-domestic gas registration and regulation: customer/owner FAQs


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