Jacqueline from whatsonni.com shares her pick of family events across the North for this Bank Holiday Weekend.


Recreate the summer steam train excursion of yester-year with our steam train along the edge of Belfast Lough. This summer excursion on Saturday 25th May will offer passengers steam train travel from Bangor station to Belfast Central station and return. For the historically minded, the steam train will offer a unique chance to travel south from Bangor on the former Belfast and County Down Railway line to Belfast. Departure times: Bangor Station 13:35;  Belfast Central 15:15.  For all our County Down events click HERE.


The Factory Girls comes to the Burnavon Cookstown on Thursday 23rd May. It tells the story of five women facing the threat of redundancy, who stage a lock-in in a shirt factory in Co. Donegal when faced with losing their jobs.  The characters are five strong and independent women: Ellen, Una, Vera, Rosemary and Rebecca who take on the boss and the union. These “girls” may never get back their jobs, but their brief adventure has brought each of them the insight that will give them the courage to soldier on. Described as a truly realistic play filled with humour, charm, fine acting and staging, this is a heart-warming play that will tug at every emotion.    For all our County Tyrone listings click  HERE.


The Puppet Lab presents EACH PEACH PEAR PLUM at the Ardowen Theatre on Wednesday 22nd May.  Adapted from the book by Janet and Allen Ahlberg, Each Peach Pear Plum is set in a delightful green meadow with a river running through it, songs and music bring a variety of nursery rhyme characters to life on their way to Mother Hubbard’s for some Plum Pie.  This performance is suitable for children aged 3+ and their families.  For all our County Fermanagh listings click  HERE.


Tamlaght O’Crilly Vintage Rally Group are holding their annual Vintage Fair and Rally on Saturday 25th May 2013 from 12pm-4pm.  There will be music by Fiddler Adam, Simon Peters and others, as well as animals and retriever dogs on show. With a variety of stalls, games, bouncy castle,  huge display of vintage vehicles and tractors there is something for all the family. There will also be free craft and cookery workshops, health checks and advisory services. Admission £5.  For all our County Derry/Londonderry listings click HERE.


The May bank holidays at Armagh Planetarium are out of this world. Join in on Monday 27th May for the Planet Aliens workshop where you will design and make your very own model alien with the help of the fantastic Emerald Garrison sculptors.  The Emerald Garrison will also be demonstrating how they have created some of their amazing props and sets using clay.  This is a hands-on workshop where you will get the opportunity to create your own unique sculpture to take home. Each workshop will last approximately 40 minutes where fun is guaranteed for all the family. All we ask is that you use your imagination!  For all our County Armagh listings click HERE.


Rathlin Sound Maritime Festival, an exciting new annual celebration of our rich local maritime history, culture, music, and food will take place between 24th May and 2nd June 2013, located on the stunningly beautiful landscapes and waters between Ballycastle and Rathlin Island on the spectacular north coast of Ireland, right in the heart of the Causeway Coast and Glens.  With on the water and seaside based ‘get involved’ activities including kayaking, diving, paddleboarding, surfing and more, historic and modern sea craft, dinghy and yacht racing, competitions, local and historic talks, tours, guided walks, open days and exhibitions there will be something to interest everyone including plenty of family friendly activities. The Festival will also include a special seafood themed food and craft market with cookery demonstrations, and a Can’t Cook Won’t Cook challenge by local Councillors. Local cafes, bars and restaurants will also be offering special menus and events throughout the event to celebrate our unique food offering. In the evenings there will be a wealth of entertainment to choose from including music, drama and films including great local, national and international singers and bands. For all County Antrim listings click HERE.


As the city gets set for summer, Belfast is playing host to some magnificent ships that have sailed the high seas at the Belfast Titanic Maritime Festival, 25-27 May. The festival will celebrate the city’s unique maritime heritage alongside Titanic activities that will include tours, talks, exhibitions and drama as well as family friendly entertainment and music throughout the three days.  For all our Belfast events listings click HERE.

Get ready to shake, rattle and roll to the Larne Alive Summer Festival, 31st May – 15th June 2013.

This year’s festival has been themed around the retro delights of the 1940’s and 50’s and offers something for everyone!

To kick off the festival organisers have arranged a special cinema showing of ‘Grease’ at the McNeill Theatre, Larne, on Friday 31st May.  This promises not to be any old screening but a musical showing where the audience can sing-along with word to the songs appearing on screen!  There will be prizes for the best dressed and the ticket price includes refreshments during the evening.  Tickets cost £5 and are available from Larne Tourist Information Centre on 028 28 260088.

The following day Larne Town Centre will be awash with colour as the festival parade heads down Main Street.  The parade will feature local young people who have recently learned to stilt walk, as well as local schools, groups and sports clubs.  There will be live music at Broadway Bandstand along with circus entertainers and face painting from 2pm.  The parade will set off from Larne YMCA at 3pm moving onto Victoria Road, Agnew Street, Main Street, High Street, Pound Street and back to St John’s Place.  There is still time to get involved in the parade by contacting Rachael McMaster on 028 28 263047 or email mcmasterr@larne.gov.uk.

The festival will be in full swing on Sunday 2nd June at Larne Town Park with a 1950’s Jamboree.  You are encouraged to bring your own picnic and refreshments as this event is part of the Big Lunch Project.  We have games to suit the era as well as colourful walkabouts and amazing circus performers.  Rock around the clock in our arts and crafts tent or get your face painted.  There will be plenty of vintage cars and motorcycles to peruse and a special fancy dress competition.  We are looking for the best 1950’s costumes with categories for all ages!  FirePoise will be closing the day with a two-person swing inspired fire performance.  The event starts at 2pm and finishes at 5pm.

Larne Alive is encouraging the public to park in the Larne Town centre car parks and walk to Larne Town Park for this event.  Parking is available at Agnew Street, Fairhill, Narrow Gauge Road, and Riverdale.  There will be no parking allowed along Bankheads Lane to ensure access to the park for emergency services.

There will be parking available at the Town Park Car Park, Larne Leisure Centre and Town Centre Car Parks.  The event will take place from 2pm – 5pm.

On Saturday 8th June the AES Ballylumford Larne Half Marathon will take place and Larne Alive have put on some special town centre entertainment to encourage all walkers and runners on their way.  The ALS Band will be performing live at Broadway Bandstand from 10am – 12pm.  Full details of the Half Marathon can be found on www.larnehalfmarathon.webs.com.

The final event of the festival will be a special vintage-style tea dance held at Larne Town Hall on Saturday 15th June, 2pm-4pm.  Special Guests Swingabella will be providing the music.  There will be a short dance lesson prior to the dance at 1.30pm, with tea and cupcakes served for afternoon tea.  This is open to all ages.  Tickets are £5 and available from Larne Tourist Information Centre on 028 28 260088 or email Larnetourism@btconnect.com.

For more information please contact Larne Tourist Information Centre on 028 28 260088.

Ilex on board as EBN Congress Principal Sponsor:

Ilex has joined Invest NI and DCAL as a principal sponsor of EBN Congress, the biggest international innovation conference in Northern Ireland this year, which is being organised by NORIBIC (Northern Ireland Business and Innovation Centre).

Matt McNulty, Interim Chair of Ilex and Dr Bernard Toal, Chief Executive of NORIBIC, were pictured making the announcement.

Dr Bernard Toal, chief executive of NORIBIC says that given Ilex’s strategic role in the economic growth of North West, Ilex’s support is particularly welcome.

“The congress focuses on the three key areas of the ‘One Plan’ for the regeneration of the city that Ilex has driven – social innovation, cultural innovation and digital innovation. So Ilex’s support for the congress is both extremely welcome and very significant,” he adds.

Matt McNulty, Interim Chair of Ilex added: “Ilex is delighted to support the EBN Congress in Derry~Londonderry.  Not only will this conference draw people from around the world to the city, it will positively promote its regeneration in line with our ambition of the One Plan. It will also project the city as a location of choice for investment and will have a substantial economic impact, generating over £700,000 for the local economy.”

Topping the programme for the three day conference (29th-31st May) will be Steve Wozniak, who has been a Silicon Valley icon and philanthropist for more than thirty years.  In 1976, Wozniak co-founded Apple Computer Inc with Steve Jobs, helping to shape the computing industry with his design of Apple’s first line of products.

EBN Congress 2013 will include a series of events and exhibitions including the Digital, Cultural and Social Innovation networking Villages.  It will begin on 29th May with a civic reception hosted by the Mayor of Derry, followed by a cultural welcome event in the Craft Village.  The Millennium Forum will then stage the main conference on 30th and 31st May with a Gala Dinner and Concert showcasing many local acts at The Venue at Ebrington on the Thursday evening (30th May).

Further information about EBN Congress is available at: www.noribic.com/ebncongress

Ilex urc was established to promote the physical, economic and social regeneration of Derry~Londonderry and has specific responsibility to manage and re-develop former military base Ebrington (26 acres) www.ilex-urc.com


“Prepare to be stimulated, inspired and amazed,” says Dr Bernard Toal, Chief Executive of the Northern Ireland Business and Innovation Centre (NORIBIC) as the final countdown begins to one of Europe’s largest and most prestigious business events.  The EBN Congress is now only 10 days away from its debut appearance in Northern Ireland to be held in Derry~Londonderry from 29th-31st May 2013.

Headlined by Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak, the Derry-based organisers NORIBIC, have secured an unparalleled line-up of 50 top class speakers from throughout Europe and as far away as China and Australia. Over 450 delegates have already signed up to attend with new registrations coming in on a daily basis.   Exhibition space at the Millennium Forum conference venue is sold out with over 40 exhibitors confirmed and a growing waiting list.  Sponsorship has also exceeded targets with top line support from Invest Northern Ireland, DCAL and ILEX as well as another 19 well-known private and public sector organisations from throughout Northern Ireland.

Dr Bernard Toal, Chief Executive of NORIBIC says that the EBN Congress provides a unique opportunity to hear and engage with some of the world’s leading innovators and entrepreneurs.  “In my experience there has never been a line-up to match this in Northern Ireland.  Focusing on the themes of Digital, Social and Cultural Innovation, the breadth of expertise and experience on offer is nothing less than awesome and we cannot wait to get started.  Our European delegates and those from closer to home will not only be informed and inspired but also entertained by an eclectic mix of cultural experiences so it really is a conference with a difference.  There are still a few delegate places left and with a specially reduced fee specifically for Northern Ireland businesses we would encourage registration without delay.”

Steve Wozniak, Apple co-founder, will be joined by Sir Tim Smit KBE, famous for his work creating the Eden Project which is often referred to as the ‘Eighth Wonder of the World’; USA based Richard Florida, the best-selling author on the economic importance of the creative industries and described as an ‘intellectual rock star’; and Benjamin Southworth, Deputy CEO and Head of Community of the Tech City Investment Organisation in London.

EBN Congress 2013 will include a series of events and exhibitions including the Digital, Cultural and Social Innovation networking Villages.  It will begin on 29th May with a civic reception hosted by the Mayor of Derry, followed by a cultural welcome event in the Craft Village.  The Millennium Forum will then stage the main conference on 30th and 31st May with a Gala Dinner and Concert showcasing many local acts at The Venue at Ebrington on the Thursday evening (30th May).

In addition to the Principal Sponsors, the EBN Congress is also supported by SEUPB’s INTERREG IVA Programme, the Irish BICS, Derry Visitor and Convention Bureau (DVCB), Derry City Council, Pi Communications, the Nerve Centre, Learning Pool, Bombardier, Concentrix, Matrix, Carson and McDowell, Northern Ireland Science Park (NISP), Seagate, North West Regional College (NWRC) the Department for Employment and Learning (DEL), Tayto and Bushmills.

Richard O’Brien’s Rocky Horror Show comes to the Millennium Forum!

“Still the sexiest and funniest show in town”

Evening Standard




2 – 7 SEPTEMBER 2013


The Rocky Horror Show 40th Anniversary production is coming to the Millennium Forum between 2 – 7 September as part of its year-long run. Ben Forster, who won the ITV1 series Superstar and then went on to play the lead in Jesus Christ Superstar, will star as Brad. West End actor Oliver Thornton, who has appeared in Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Phantom Of the Opera, Les Miserables, Chicago and Starlight Express, stars as the lead character Frank ‘n’ Furter. Philip Franks, from The Darling Buds of May and Heartbeat, plays the Narrator.

Since its first appearance at the Royal Court Theatre in June 1973, Richard O’Brien’s The Rocky Horror Show has become the world’s favourite Rock N’ Roll musical. It has been performed worldwide for nearly 40 years in over 30 countries in every continent and has been translated into more than 20 languages. To celebrate the 40th anniversary, Christopher Luscombe has created a new production for a year-long UK tour.

This musical extravaganza will feature all of its famous musical classics including “Science Fiction/Double Feature”, “Dammit Janet” and of course, the timeless floor-filler, “The Time-Warp”.

The Rocky Horror Show tells the story of Brad and his fiancée Janet, two squeaky clean college kids who meet Dr Frank ’n’ Furter by chance when their car breaks down outside his house, whilst on their way to visit their former college professor. It is an adventure they’ll never forget, with fun, frolics, frocks, and frivolity, bursting with timeless songs and outrageous outfits. Directed by Christopher Luscombe, The Rocky Horror Show is a guaranteed party, which famously combines science-fiction, horror, comedy and music and encourages audience participation meaning, of course, getting dressed in your most outrageous fancy dress.

Ready to thrill you with fun and naughty moments, O’Brien’s Rocky Horror Show is the boldest bash of them all. Be warned, this show has rude parts!

The Rocky Horror Show performs at the Millennium Forum from Mon 2nd to Sat 7th September.  Tickets are now available from the Box Office.  Telephone 71 264455 or visit www.millenniumforum.co.uk for bookings.


The Northern Ireland Tourist Board (NITB) has put together a list of 10 exciting things to do in Northern Ireland over the next week (May 20 – 26).

  • Continental Market comes to Newcastle, Co. Down May 21 – 22.  The Continental Market is once again coming to Newcastle, with a variety of continental foods and crafts, with something for everyone to enjoy.
  • Ballyclare May Fair, Ballyclare Town Centre, Co. Antrim, May 21 – 26.  The picturesque market town will be a hive of activity with the traditional horse fair, continental market, fun fair, craft stalls and live music.
  • Blues on the Bay Festival, Warrenpoint, Co. Down, 22 – 27 May.  Now in its 15th year, The ‘International Guinness Blues on the Bay Festival’ started out with only 20 gigs and has now progressed into one of the World’s most popular blues festivals.  Enjoy five days of blues music featuring world class international Jazz and Blues performers.  As well as this there will be music workshops, a picnic and a busking competition.
  • Crazy Sheep Racing, Ballycastle, Co. Antrim, May 24 -16. This event has been taking place for a number of years and will see sheep race around a track in Ballycastle with all proceeds being donated to charity.  The event will also include pony rides, pony trekking, boating, go-karting and farm tours on the Paddy Wagon.
  • Armagh City Craft Fair, Market Place Theatre and Arts Centre, Co. Armagh, May 24 – 25.  This year the craft fair promises to be bigger and better with more craft stalls selling high quality and affordable craft including textiles, jewellery, glass, ceramics and wood.  There will also be craft demonstrations and workshops available for children and adults.
  • European Parks Day, Roe Valley Country Park, Co. Londonderry, May 25.  This event aims to promote protected areas and the sustainable management of landscapes, fauna and flora.  There will be a brief talk about the history of the park as well as a walk through the wooded area and along the river.
  • Belfast Titanic Maritime Festival, various venues, Belfast, May 25 – 27.  This festival will celebrate the city’s unique maritime heritage alongside Titanic activities that will include tours, talks, exhibitions and drama as well as family friendly entertainment and music throughout the three days.
  • Big Foot Walk 2013, through the parks and country lanes of Tyrone and Armagh, May 26.   An endurance walking event linking the historic towns of Dungannon and Armagh and two of the most historic sites in Ireland, O’Neill’s Castle and Navan Fort.  The route twists through the parks and country lanes of Tyrone and Armagh for 18 miles.  Make sure to bring walking shoes, sensible clothing, light rain gear, a mobile phone and walking stick/poles.
  • Country Fair, Florence Court, Enniskillen, Co. Fermanagh, May 26.  Enjoy this annual country fair which will have a variety of local craft stalls, you can also see beautiful vintage vehicles and meet some interesting rare breeds.

  • Jazz in the Gardens, Mount Stewart, Newtownards, Co. Down, May 26.  Bring your picnic and settle down with your family and friends to enjoy an afternoon of jazz in the beautiful setting of the lawns at the front of the house.

ALAN DAVIES LIFE IS PAIN UK TOUR 2013 – Millennium Forum, Sat 30th Nov


Alan Davies - photograph courtesy of Tony Briggs

Following the phenomenal success of the Australian and UK Tours of Life Is Pain in 2012 (his first live Stand-up show for more than a decade), a critically acclaimed tour of New Zealand and two nights at London’s Hammersmith Apollo earlier this year, Alan Davies – the much-loved star of iconic television series such as Jonathan Creek and QI – will tour the UK again this Autumn due to popular demand.

Alan began his career in stand-up comedy in 1988 and was runner-up in the City Limits New Act of the Year contest 1989. He was named Time Out Best Young Comic in 1991 and made his network television debut on Tonight with Jonathan Ross in 1992. In 1993 two appearances on C4’s Viva Cabaret led to a nomination for a British Comedy Award as Best Newcomer.

In 1994 he won an Edinburgh Festival Critics Award for Comedy and a Perrier Award Nomination and the show was released on VHS as Live At The Lyric. The following year he appeared at the Montreal, Melbourne and Auckland Comedy Festivals and was nominated for a British Comedy Award as Best Stand-Up Comedian..

In 1996 he took the eponymous role of Jonathan Creek, written by David Renwick. The show ran for 14 years and has been seen by audiences worldwide. A special episode was filmed earlier this year and is due to be transmitted this Easter.

His 1998 show, Urban Trauma ran at the Duchess Theatre before touring the UK and was recorded for a DVD and shown on BBC1 with a documentary series about the tour, Stand-Up with Alan Davies.

In 2001 Alan took the role of Bob in Russel T.Davies’ Bob & Rose for which he was awarded Best Actor in a Drama at the Monte Carlo Television Awards.

In 2002, he starred in Auntie and Me by Morris Panych for another sell-out season at Edinburgh before transferring to the Wyndham’s Theatre for a four month West End run. That same year Alan took part in a comedy pilot hosted by Stephen Fry. QI has subsequently run every year since 2003.

The lead role in two series of the ITV1 legal drama, The Brief, followed, and in 2009 Penguin published his first book, My Favourite People 1978-1988 which was adapted into a three part documentary series for Channel 4 called Teenage Revolution (also the title for the paperback).

In 2010 he took the lead role of chef Roland White in the BBC2 sitcom Whites and in 2011 Alan co-wrote and starred in a short film for Sky One as part of their Little Crackers Christmas season before returning to Australia for a successful tour of QI Live followed by a sell-out tour of his new stand-up show, Life Is Pain.

Alan’s performance of Life Is Pain was recorded at HMV Hammersmith Apollo earlier this year and will be released on DVD in November 2013.

Alan Davies performs at the Millennium Forum on Sat 30th November. Tickets are now available from the Box Office.  Telephone 71 264455 or visit www.millenniumforum.co.uk for bookings.

Jacqueline from whatsonni.com shares her pick of family events across the North this weekend.


The Action for Biodiversity Project is hosting a free interactive Family Fun Day at Kilbroney Park on Saturday 18th May to give you the opportunity to discover more about the importance of animals, plants and people in our everyday lives across Ireland. For all our County Down events click HERE.


The fabulous Frock Around The Clock Vintage Fair will be returning to the historic home of Lissan House, Cookstown on Sunday 19th May from 12-5pm with another extravaganza of vintage and handmade treasures for sale, nostalgia and fun.  30 quality exhibitors will be selling authentic vintage and handmade fashion, jewellery, furniture, homewares, art, crafts, gifts and sweet treats – most of which can’t be found on the high street. Visitors will also have the opportunity to explore 400 years of history around Lissan House and gardens, before relaxing and refreshing in the Lissan Tea Room.  Lissan House will also be running a Family Treasure Hunt in the grounds of the Lissan Estate on the day.  Admission will cost £5 for adults, and accompanied children (under 15s) go free.  For all our County Tyrone listings click  HERE.


The 10th Borderline Arts Festival takes place on Friday 17th and Saturday 18th May 2013. Entries are now invited for a range of Speech and Drama, Music, Singing, Art, Creative Writing and Photography competitions. Entries accepted from those between the ages of 4 and 18 and a great selection of prizes is on offer.  For all our County Fermanagh listings click  HERE.


Adapted from the book by Janet and Allan Ahlberg, ‘Each Peach Pear Plum’ is a game of ‘I spy’ for little ones and their families from Puppet Lab Theatre. ‘Tom Thumb’s in the cupboard, Mother Hubbard’s on the stairs, Where are the Three Bears?’ The setting is a delightful green meadow with a river running through it. With songs and music the production brings to life a variety of nursery rhyme characters played by a wide range of puppets, all on their way to Mother Hubbard’s for some Plum Pie. Friday 17th May at the Bridewell Magherafelt at 11.30am and 2.30pm. Suitable for age 3+.  For all our County Derry/Londonderry listings click HERE.


The Apple Blossom Tractor Road Run starts at Peatlands Country Park, just off junction 13 on the M1 motorway at 11am on Saturday 18th. After some 20 – 25 miles of route the run stops in Loughgall Football club for a bit of lunch then back to the Peatlands Park. In it’s 11th year the Tractor Run now attracts over 100 plus tractors each year and is a great day out for the tractor drivers and followers.  All proceeds will go to Orthopaedic Research in Musgrave Park Hospital.   For all our County Armagh listings click HERE.


The best of amateur theatre comes to Theatre at The Mill all week until Saturday, staging 6 days of top quality drama, competing for the Grand Opera House Premier Award.  Under the adjudication of Mr Walker Ewart, a range of dramas are expected to engage, unsettle, shock, provoke and delight audiences performed by 6 amateur theatre groups who recently qualified in the regional full length play festivals.  For all County Antrim listings click HERE.


Get those braincells moving with an entertaining Sunday afternoon quiz on board the Belfast Barge.  Great prizes will be awarded to the winning team.  For all our Belfast events listings click HERE.

Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap 60TH ANNIVERSARY UK TOUR

Millennium Forum – Mon 17th to Sat 22nd June

For over 50 years, Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap has been the world’s longest running stage production. The first ever tour of the record-breaking production opened on 11 September 2012 in Canterbury and will tour through 2013 due to unprecedented demand. It arrives at the Millennium Forum for one week only on Monday 17th May.

The cast for the second leg of the tour includes: Steven France (Eastenders, The Bill) as Christopher Wren, Karl Howman (Brush Strokes) as Mr Paravicini, Bruno Langley (Coronation Street, Doctor Who) as Giles Ralston, Graham Seed (Yes, Prime Minister UK Tour, BBC Radio 4’s The Archers) as Major Metcalf and Jemma Walker (Family Affairs, Eastenders) as Mollie Ralston. Elizabeth Power (EastEnders) as Mrs Boyle and Clare Wilkie (Eastenders) will play Miss Casewell.  Bob Saul will reprise his West End role as Sgt Trotter.

This classic murder mystery play is now in its 60th year in London’s West End. Agatha Christie’s grandson, Mathew Prichard welcomed the audience for this diamond jubilee celebratory evening, which was also the 25,000th performance.

Mousetrap Productions has licensed 60 productions of The Mousetrap world-wide to mark the 60th year. During this period the world’s longest running show will be seen in every continent, with professional productions scheduled for Australia, China, Korea, Turkey, South Africa, Russia, Czech Republic, Hungary, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Poland, Spain, Scandinavia, Venezuela, and across the United States and Canada.

The Mousetrap performs at the Millennium Forum from Mon 17th to Sat 22nd June.  Tickets are now available from the Box Office.  Telephone 71 264455 or visit www.millenniumforum.co.uk for bookings.

Groomsport set to embrace its Ulster-Scots heritage this summer

This July and August will see Groomsport embrace its Ulster-Scots heritage with the Ulster-Scots Agency and North Down Borough Council joining together to put on traditional Ulster-Scots entertainment in the village.

The entertainment will take place at Cockle Row Cottages, beside Groomsport Harbour, beginning Saturday 6 July with music and dance, and then each Sunday, through July and August, there will be a mix of traditional Ulster-Scots music, dancing, pipers and baking. The first weekend in September will see the season close with an Ulster-Scots / Eagle Wing finale including music, dancing, children’s entertainment, baking and period re-enactors.

Groomsport’s Ulster-Scots connections date back to the settlements of Sir James Hamilton at the turn of the 17th Century. During this early period Groomsport became known as a busy working port with ships passing back and forth from Scotland for both legal and illegal trade!

Groomsport was also where the ship Eagle Wing departed. The ship built to carry Presbyterian settlers to America at the time when they were suffering persecution in Ulster. On 9 September 1636, 140 passengers departed for the “New World”. The voyage however came to an end with fierce storms off Newfoundland, forcing its return on 3 November 1636 and dropping anchor in Carrickfergus.

The settlements as a whole saw hundreds immigrate to these lands, their influence largely responsible for shaping Ulster as we know it today.

The entertainment this summer will aim to celebrate these Ulster-Scots connections and the influence it has had on our culture and entertainment ever since.

Cockle Row Cottages are open weekends in May then daily from 1 June, 11am– 5pm with free family entertainment each weekend from 2pm-4pm. In addition to the Ulster-Scots content the programme features children’s entertainment including face painting, magic shows, animal road shows, along with music and craft fairs to name a few.

For further information contact Bangor Tourist Information Centre 028 9127 0069, email tic@northdown.gov.uk or visit www.northdowntourism.com