About


Sonairte [pronounced SON-ART-A] is an interactive visitor centre promoting ecological awareness and sustainable living. The name Sonairte is derived from a middle Irish word meaning “positive strength”.

Sonairte was established as a charity in 1988 by members of the local community and concerned environmentalists to promote environmental awareness and education. The founders drew inspiration from organisations such as the Centre for Alternative Technology in Wales, the HDRA (now Garden Organic) in the UK and the Permaculture Research Institute in Australia, and from activists such as Fernando Pereira after whom a courtyard is named. Sonairte has been certified as an organic food producer with the Irish Organic Farmers and Growers Association since 1986 and subsequently by Irish Organic Trust, and has been teaching organic horticulture and providing courses in various aspects of environmental education ever since.

Sonairte, which is situated in a farm complex of noteworthy historical interest on the banks of the River Nanny near Laytown (Co. Meath), has developed steadily since it was originally established, in terms of both its physical facilities and its standing as an environmental organisation, visitor attraction and educational facility. The site, which now covers some ten acres, is held under long term lease. A redevelopment project for the centre will soon be launched. In all aspects of renovation, care is taken to stay true to the green philosophy of the centre, particularly in the choice of building material and use of renewable energy and energy conservation. 

Sonairte is a registered charity and welcomes tax efficient gifts.

Our Vision: to be a community hub enabling people to live more sustainably to address the twin environmental crises the world currently faces – the climate crisis and the biodiversity crisis.
Our Mission: to be an educational centre which will protect and
increase understanding of the natural environment, and will educate the public
and schools in ways of conserving the environment.

Our Charitable Purpose:

– to provide education in all aspects of ecology

– to promote sustainable living through learning and cooperation

– to promote sustainable development

– to promote organic, ecological and sustainable farming practices

– to promote environmental awareness and nature conservation

– to promote appropriate and sustainable technologies

– to promote the use of genuinely renewable resources

– to promote intercultural exchange

– to promote reconciliation

– to promote fair trade