Today marks the start of National Heritage Week with in-person events taking place for the first time in three years since the Covid-19 pandemic.

A wide spectrum of over 1,300 physical experiences run alongside digital heritage projects until Sunday 21 August and all the details are available on the Heritage Week website.

Organised by the Heritage Council, this year's theme is sustainability and biodiversity.

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Across Co Donegal today, the first events of the week highlighted the broad spectrum covered by heritage including our built, cultural and natural heritage.

Heritage Guide Seamus O'Doherty was delighted to be back in action, giving in-person guided tours of the old Abbey in Donegal town.

He is passionate about the wealth of history and heritage there and encourages people to visit all year round, but he said Heritage Week is a great opportunity to make locals and visitors alike aware of just what's out there.

Heritage guide Seamus O'Doherty at Donegal Abbey

In the beautiful grounds of Glebe House in Churchhill, people were sitting under the shade of trees and around the lake painting the idyllic surroundings.

Glebe House is the home of the late artist Derek Hill and Johnny Boyle, an artist from Glenties, was leading the painting group.

He said it was only right that Glebe House and grounds were used during Heritage Week because it is part of our heritage and it is important to highlight Derek Hill's legacy and encourage others to paint.

Donegal County Council's Heritage Officer Joseph Gallagher was out and about attending as many events as possible today.

He said it was wonderful to have this very important week back up and running again for real.

In terms of the theme of sustainability this year, he said we have to remember that "heritage is a finite resource, be it cultural, built or natural and we have to work to preserve it".

Mr Gallagher said Donegal people were very enthusiastic about their history and heritage and there were many people locally with a lot of knowledge who were happy to share it.

One of those people is fisherman George Gallagher from Inver.

Fisherman George Gallagher displays his skills

He was demonstrating the traditional skills of the inshore fisherman like net-making at Donegal County Museum in Letterkenny today.

The venue will also host many more exhibitions and talks throughout the week.