OpenStreetMap Calendar Calendar

Recording milk churn stands for Ireland's National Heritage Week 2023 (workshop)

Castlecomer Library

16th August 2023 14:00 – 15:30

The workshop below belongs to this event.

Despite being disused since the 1970s with the introduction of milk lorries, milk churn stands can still be found along Irish roadsides, especially in counties like Kilkenny, Tipperary and Cork. They were used since the introduction of co-op creameries by farmers who left their full milk churns on them to be picked up on the way to the local creamery. Later, the churns were returned with skimmed milk, other co-op products and the latest gossip from the creamery.

Surviving milk churn stands in Ireland are in all sorts of states ranging from lovingly restored with milk churns on top and explanation panels on the side to completely overgrown.

Since March 2023, international crowdsourced efforts have been made by volunteers on the open data platforms OpenStreetMap and Wikimedia to record them in countries like Ireland, Finland, Germany, Sweden, New Zealand and others. This is a great way to be part of a world wide project and to record everyday history of rural Ireland. Maybe we can even push the records in Ireland beyond the over 400 already recorded in Finland!

In this workshop, you will learn how to record photographs and local history on Wikimedia and how to map milk churn stands on OpenStreetMap. You can use the skills you acquire in the workshop to record any type of built heritage, including holy wells, mass paths, forges and many more.

Please come along with photographs and stories about milk churn stands in your area! If you have photographs on your phone, it would save some time on the day, if you got a Wikimedia account beforehand: .
Ahead of the workshop, you can collect a hi-vis vest, pencil and survey sheet at Castlecomer Library. Alternatively, you can always download the survey sheet from this article. To record more information you can bring extra paper, or record notes on your mobile phone.

Organised by Anne-Karoline Distel (OSM: b-unicycling), Director and blog writer at OpenStreetMap Ireland, OpenStreetMap contributor, self-employed professional musician and publisher of books on Irish nature and history under Distel Publishing. Former Webmaster, Content Manager, blog writer and podcaster at Kilkenny Archaeological Society.
She promotes the possibilities of OpenStreetMap as open source mapping tool for everyone, but especially people with an interest in history and heritage, through her YouTube channel OSM for History Buffs.
She is a supporting member of the recently founded local group Kilkenny History Mappers.

Part of National Heritage Week, a nine-day celebration of Ireland’s natural, built and cultural heritage coordinated by The Heritage Council. The main aim of the week is to promote awareness of our heritage, thereby encouraging its conservation and preservation. It is part of European Heritage Days, a joint initiative of the Council of Europe and the European Union.

Created by danieldegroot2