A team building day at Spike Island: 5 reasons why it’s a must for a day event
Spike Island sits right in the middle of Cork Harbour. Cork harbour is regarded as the second best natural harbour in the world. It has ninety square miles of water. Spike Island is one of five islands in the harbour area. The island itself is made up of 104 acres in total including a 24 acre fortress called Fort Mitchell, also known as Fortress Spike.
The first activity recorded on Spike Island was a sixth century monastery. It remained a monastic settlement for several hundred years until probably the Norse invasion from the Scandinavian Countries. There were centuries of island homes with inhabitants commuting by boat to the main Island, or great Island with the town of Cobh as its capital. Spike had its role changed several times during its history. For a time it was used as a quarantine for cattle and livestock. Most famously it made its name as a prison fortress. Designed and built about 200 years ago in the shape of a star, it went from being a military fortress at one stage to becoming the world’s largest prison.
Now that we have an overview of the Island let us go through the five reasons why it is a great for team building and a team day out;
Reason one, no one can just rock up and drift inside the fortress. It is after all an island and access is by way of a ferry from Kennedy Quay in the harbour town of Cobh. So the first adrenaline hit will come as the team make their way along the quay and embark on the vessel for the ten/twenty minute trip to the Island.
The tour starts as the team disembark from the ferry on to this unique Island. Teams can avail of the island guided tours; use an audio guide or just self exploration.
Immerse your team in the fascinating history that includes Monks and Monasteries, raiders and pirates; captors and convicts and saints and sinners. The 200 year old history of the fort will keep the team riveted for the duration of the day.
Reason two, the tableau of scenes depicting the inmates of the prison in particular the punishment block that was constructed in 1858 after a warden was killed. The real live scenes will make the hair stand up on the back of the combined team’s heads. Conditions were horrendous and punishment very severe. It was the world’s largest prison with as many as 2300 inmates.
Escape from the island was impossible even though several brave souls attempted it. The tidal current between Spike and Cobh roars through the estuary and makes swimming practically impossible.
Reason three on the adrenaline list is a state of the art Computer simulation room. It is here that a computer rendering of cork harbour allows team members to take control and pilot a ship or even protect Cork Harbour from attack. This aspect of the Island visit will certainly appeal to all the computer geeks.
Reason number four for your team building visit to Spike is the range of activities that are available when the team has soaked up all the interesting history.
There are adventure activities. Also there are obstacle courses for the energetic team members. The team can spend time on an archaeology dig. Plenty to excite the curious team members; For team leaders there is nothing better than donning military dress and barking out orders as your team drills.
What about Jail break orienteering for the adventure lovers of the team?
Reason number five is the refreshments side of the events. Restaurants and shops to relax in before heading back to Cobh.
Cork is a great location for team building! Check out what else this county has to offer here.