Heritage event celebrates 20 years of success

The Department for Communities has launched the 20th year of the European Heritage Open Days (EHOD) Weekend on 9 and 10 September 2017.

The theme for the 2017 event is Heritage and Nature: A landscape of possibilities.  History and culture will be brought to life at over 370 properties, some of which are only open on this weekend, and a wide range of events. All events are free of charge and many are family friendly, meaning that everyone can take this opportunity to explore. This year’s programme features a wide variety of special events such as walking tours and history re-enactments.

The programme was launched by the Director of Historic Environment Division at the Department for Communities, Iain Greenway, at the Belfast Harbour Commissioners Office.  The Harbour Commissioners Office is a Grade A listed building with significant antique furnishings and artworks.  Built in 1854 and extended in 1895, the Harbour Office’s style of architecture reflects an Italian palazzo with impressive stained glass windows depicting industry, commerce and enterprise and mosaic floors on the ground floor and first floor lobby.

Some highlights for European Heritage Open Days 2017 include:-.

Ram’s Island – Sandy Bay, Lough Neagh – you can take a free tour of this intriguing island and learn about its diverse history and wildlife. Features of the island include a round tower from the remains of a 1000 year old Celtic monastic settlement, and the ruins of the O’Neill family’s nineteenth century summer house, the caretaker’s cottage and a 200 year old exotic planted garden.

Northern Ireland’s Secret Bunker, PortadownFind out how our country would have coped if the Cold War had ever turned hot. Tours by original crew members dressed in period uniform, WWII ‘Battle of Britain’ equipment and uniforms and expert demonstrations of how the Observer Corps intercepted enemy aircraft.

Adults’ Cryptic Challenge & Children’s Puzzle Challenge, Belfast City Hall Are you and your family partial to puzzles? Kids crazy for conundrums? Test your brain power and explore the grounds for a cryptic challenge.

Guided Bus Tour of Marble Arch Caves UNESCO Global Geopark – a guided tour of some of the major sites within the UNESCO Global Geopark, including The Cavan Burren, Cornagee Viewpoint, Blacklion, Hanging Rock, Claddagh Glen with optional nature walk. Includes a guided tour of Marble Arch Caves.

The Director of Historic Environment Division at the Department for Communities, Iain Greenway  said: “In this the 20th year of European Heritage Open Days, I am delighted that over 370 properties are opening free of charge during the weekend of 9-10 September, many of which do not usually open to the public.  I hope you enjoy the variety of our historic environment on offer.  EHOD provides a great opportunity to see behind closed doors and I would encourage everyone to visit the properties on offer.  Brochures are available at tourist information centres, libraries and are available to download at https://discovernorthernireland.com/ehod

When the European Heritage Open Days began, 67 properties opened and now in this, our 20th year, 370 are opening.  Last year over 60,000 people came to visit the properties so why not join us this year?

Whilst all events are free some require pre-booking. To avoid disappointment check out www.discovernorthernireland.com/ehod or @ehodni on Twitter.

Ards and North Down’s Arts & Heritage Autumn Guide Out Now!    

Ards and North Down Borough Council is delighted to announce the arrival of their latest Arts & Heritage Guide.

The Autumn guide, covering the September to December period is absolutely packed with a huge range of exhibitions, music, theatre and arts events taking place across the borough, offering opportunities for everyone to enjoy what the Arts & Heritage programme has to offer.

Highlights from the latest guide include the Aspects Festival which is taking place from 14 – 24 September which presents another packed programme of events celebrating Irish writing. With Frank McGuinness, Carol Drinkwater, Bernie McGill and Colm Tóibín among the glittering list of wordsmiths and friends. There will also be workshops, children’s events, music and theatre in addition to readings and interviews.

The Friday Night Live series at Ards Arts Centre is back with a bang in September and you can also enjoy live music in the beautiful surroundings of Bangor Castle with the Music In The Chamber series. December welcomes festive favourites with a special Christmas Number 1’s night and the annual family friendly Ulster Orchestra concert to get you in the Christmas spirit!

If hands-on arts and crafts activity appeals why not sign up for one of our many Creative Classes and make someone special a Christmas gift? Choose from jewellery making, soap-making, wreath-making and ceramic decorations to name just a few!

North Down Museum has a busy few months ahead too. Within the pages of the new guide, you’ll find details of a whole host of talks, exhibitions and events taking place from September – December. Highlights include the “Not So Scary Halloween” event, the Christmas Craft Market and the wonderful Flappers Fashion Show which is back by popular demand.

The museum is also proud to present the “Little Black Dress” Exhibition. Taking place from 29 November, this exhibition will explore this fashion icon and will feature a variety of shapes and styles from over the years. On display will be dresses from Down County Museums, National Museums Northern Ireland as well as beautiful dresses from the wardrobes of local women.

Pick up your copy of the Arts & Heritage Autumn Guide from Arts Ards Centre, North Down Museum or our Visitor Centres or download from www.ardsarts.com or www.visitardsandnorthdown.com


Jacqueline shares her pick of what’s on this weekend across NI


This Sunday 3rd September enjoy a sightseeing tour of Strangford Lough with its abundance of nature and wildlife. See the SeaGen, Angus Rocks Lighthouse, surface whirlpools and some of the many seals at Cloughy Rocks Nature Reserve. You might see a pod of porpoise or even a basking shark! Book with Strangford Sea Safari.


Calling all bookworms!  Browse through the hundreds of second hand books at the Argory’s Autumn Book Fair this Saturday and Sunday. There’s sure to be something for everyone. Live music and children’s activities on Sunday. Donations of unwanted books, CDs and DVDs are welcome prior to the event.



The Happy Days Enniskillen International Beckett Festival takes place from 31st August to 3rd September.  There’s the return of old favourites such as the Schubertiade and Precious Little concerts, the morning boat rides out to islands on the lough for Beckett readings, and Festival Associate Adrian Dunbar’s acclaimed productions Ohio Impromptu and Catastrophe.  The Festival closes with a rare opportunity to watch Quad, the only work of Samuel Beckett’s to be inspired by dance. For a full programme of events see www.artsoverborders.com



There’ll be strumming on the porches of the log cabins, dancing in the cobbled streets and jamming outside the General Store at the 26th Annual Bluegrass Music Festival from 1st to 3rd  September at the Ulster American Folk Park, Omagh.  This famous Festival is jam packed with some of the biggest names in Bluegrass and Old-Time music.  Keep in touch at www.nmni.com/uafp for regular updates on this year’s Bluegrass Music Festival!



This Saturday 2nd September,  Guildhall Square will welcome the very best of artisan traders at the Walled City Market, offering visitors a friendly shopping experience with a wide selection of speciality foods ranging from vegetables, homemade jams & preserves, artisan breads & cakes, sweets and handmade craft products.


Ad Hoc Theatre performs The Importance of Being Earnest, 1st and 2nd September at the Courtyard Theatre, Newtownabbey. Recommended Age: 16yrs+ .  Two young couples hope to find true happiness, Jack with Gwendolyn and Algernon with Cecily.  Group Discount Available for groups of 10+ – contact Box Office to avail of group discount on 028 9034 0202.



The Stormont Hotel Wedding Show, presented by the Award Winning Perfect Bliss Wedding Events, takes place this Sunday 3rd September from 1.00pm to 4.00pm. There will be over 70 Wedding Specialists in attendance, mini fashion shows throughout the day along with a Live Band Showcase. VIP Area for 50 Brides who will receive champagne and goody bag.  Admission is free.


For more details on these events and to add your events free go to whatsonni.com. Follow us on twitter @whatsonNI and on facebook at fb.com/www.whatsonni.com for news, competitions and what’s on near you.

Let’s go down the pub deluxe: The Bar at Da Vinci’s Hotel signals the rise of the posh pub

The latest iteration of the traditional pub – let’s call it the ‘pub deluxe’ – takes off from where ‘90’s gastropubs and hipster craft beers left offer, and is edging its way into the luxury sector.

Leading the charge is The Garvan O’Doherty Group, with the refit of the bar at Da Vinci’s Hotel which reopened last month.  The iconic bar at Da Vinci’s Hotel closed for 4 weeks for £100,000 investment works. The makeover has changed the space from traditional Irish pub to a more contemporary and luxury pub.

Tyrone Fitzgerald, General Manager of Da Vinci’s Hotel says ‘The bar at Da Vinci’s Hotel is the heart of the hotel, it is essentially where it all started for the hotel complex. We were conscious when making over this space that the core focus had to be our iconic horseshoe bar counter.  We wanted the bar counter to act as the centre stage and all other elements of the project to work on enhancing this element of the space. We changed all the furniture, soft furnishings, flooring, wall coverings and restrooms.  The bar is still recognisable because why would you ever completely change such an impressive bar.’

The rise of the pub deluxe is down to many factors, not least of which is the pervading foodie culture.  After cafes, bistros and wine bars, it’s now the pub’s turn for an upgrade.  ‘People expect high quality food and drink everywhere they go now.  They’re also eating out often and at any number of different informal concepts.  The bar can go back to being a bar again.  The changing demographic has given bars a reason to be successful again.’

For Da Vinci’s Bar, it goes beyond great food and great drink.  ‘When people go out today, they want an experience.  We want them to walk through our bar door and just say ‘Oh, I’m going to have a bit of craic in here. We now serve food all day and have live music every Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening’

As Da Vinci’s Bar switches up its offering to embrace fine wines, cocktails and even table service, the luxury pub makes a clean break from down-to-earth gastropub aesthetic.  The new look is indulgent and opulent but modern.

Before you panic the, rest assured that while the look is ‘luxe’, the pub deluxe experience itself is anything but elitist.  It’s possible to leave Da Vinci’s Bar, enjoying a stunning cocktail and pint of beer for just over £10.00.  Bar food prices are really reasonable ranging from £5 – £16.95 and the menu is served daily until 9pm.

The bar refurbishment is the first phase of the development of the Da Vinci’s Hotel complex to be completed. Phase two will start in October with the redevelopment of the Spirit Bar space.  In addition to the new bar, restaurant, kitchen developments, attention will also be given to the exterior of the building and there will be a big focus on training and development for staff.

Da Vinci’s Hotel Complex is the flagship venue for The Garvan O’Doherty Group and is clearly repositioning itself now to re-establish its position as a market leader.

Mr Fitzgerald concluded ‘We are so excited to reopen and show our loyal customer our brand-new look. This refurb will help us cement us yet again as the venue for a great night out.  The refit of the bar at the hotel is up market but still maintains the warm hospitality that Da Vinci’s bar is renowned for. The bar is stunning, and offers great food and excellent service in a relaxing atmosphere.  We’ve already had lots of positive feedback.  I’m delighted we can offer this level of service and dining to our customers, and I’m excited to see all the future developments unfold in the coming 12 months for our hotel complex.’

Great beer & cocktails, great food, beautiful design, exceptional service: the pub deluxe is a concept we already love, only better. We’re not to call time on that! So call into Da Vinci’s Bar to see the final result for yourself.





The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole (Aged 13 ¾), Sue Townsend’s best-selling novel, will take to the MAC stage in Belfast this September.

Adam Dougal as Adrian Mole
Photo by Aaron McCracken

Chronicling the life of Adrian Mole and his adolescent years in the 1980’s, this classic comedy is a nostalgic blast from the past jam-packed with fun and laughter.

The MAC is the first stop for the touring adaptation of The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole (Aged 13 ¾) which is brought to life by Bruiser Theatre Company in their signature boisterous style at the MAC from 22 Sep – 7 Oct 2017, celebrating their 20th anniversary production.

Hilariously captured in Adrian’s secret diary the show charts the highs and lows of being a teenager during the Thatcher period including dealing with dysfunctional parents, the school bully and teenage crushes. Adrian’s troubles with spots, height and clothes still hold their relevance and will resonate with teenagers today.

Made up of an entirely local cast, Belfast actor Adam Dougal will take on the role as the infamous Adrian Mole and Colette Lennon, also from Belfast, portraying Adrian’s love interest Pandora. In fact, Adam and Colette will be celebrating the successful run of the production by getting married a week after the tour ends. The NI-based cast gives this much-loved story a new lease of life for today’s generation, making it a fun night out for those familiar with and new to Adrian Mole.

Simon Magill, Creative Director at the MAC, said: “Following the success of The Importance of Being Earnest earlier this year, we are delighted to host another vibrant production by Bruiser Theatre Company and to be the first stop on its tour. With an infectious musical score arranged by Musical Director Matthew Reeve, this hilarious adaptation by Bruiser in their signature style will bring Adrian’s story to life once more.”

Lisa May, Director at Bruiser Theatre Company, said: “As our 20th anniversary production, we’ll be giving Adrian the typical Bruiser treatment. We will be bringing our fast paced, and physical style to The MAC and beyond, throwing in an extra helping of 80s nostalgia on the way. Sue Townsend’s story perfectly encapsulates adolescent life in the 1980’s, encompassing all its ups and downs, with hilarious situations and issues that teens today will absolutely relate to.

Our fantastic all local cast will retell the hilarity of this cult classic to audiences that are familiar with Adrian, and to those who are meeting him for the first time.”

Tickets for The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole (Aged 13 ¾) are now on-sale at themaclive.com.

Supported by National Lottery funding through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.


Northern Ireland boasts a unique collection of irresistible places to stay including quirky B&Bs, luxurious spa hotels and hidden gem properties for an ideal short break. Discover NI has selected the best offers of the week for you to choose from.


Phew It’s The Weekend, Kilmorey Arms Hotel, Co Down from £120 pp

Two nights’ accommodation at this three-star hotel nestled in the Kingdom of Mourne. Enjoy a cocktail of choice on arrival, a three-course meal and a full English breakfast the next morning. Located in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, this hotel boasts a prime location for any holiday, including three National Trust sites on their doorstep. For more information or to book call 028 4176 2220.

Castle stay and golf experience, Belle Isle Castle, Co. Fermanagh,  from £112 pp

Belle Isle Castle is a stunning Irish castle set on its own private island on Lough Erne, which offers spectacular views. The castle has been extensively, yet sensitively, refurbished ensuring that a full range of modern facilities blend seamlessly with original period grandeur gaining their four star rating. This package is based on staying in the Abercorn Wing or Hamilton Wing, and is available for two nights on 17 or 27 September only.

Mid-Week Winter Offer, Causeway Hotel, Co. Antrim, from £130 per couple

A two-night B&B break for two people, with full access to the Giant’s Causeway Visitor Experience and one two-course Table d’Hôte Dinner. This three-star hotel is a grand and homely building set on the magnificent Causeway Coast, overlooking Portballintrae bay and on the doorstep of the world heritage site, the Giant’s Causeway .Offer available Sunday to Thursday only, between 1 October and ends 27 March.


All offers are subject to availability.  For further information visit www.discovernorthernireland.com


What’s on, Causeway Coast and Glens

Exhibition of Fine Art by Bryan Coulter & Alan Duke

Date:  31st July – 31st August

Time:  Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday of each week: 13:00 – 17:00
Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday of each week: 10:00 – 17:00

Venue: The Arcadia Gallery

Contact: colerainevic@causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk   Tel no: 028 7034 4723 or 028 7082 333


Causeway Market

Date: 19th & 26th August

Time: 9.00-16.00

Venue: The Diamond, Coleraine

Contact: Market Manager Tel no: 07702910884

One of the largest outdoor Market in Northern Ireland with locally sourced produce from food to gifts and snacks


Damhead Miniature Railway

Date: 26th August

Time: 12.00-17.00

Venue: 48 Damhead Road, Coleraine

Contact:  colerainevic@causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk    Tel: (028) 2587 8237   Mob: (07703) 254 595

Damhead Miniature Railway, in the heart of the countryside between Coleraine and Ballymoney, is a great place to visit with the children. The small trains can be travelled on by both the kids and adults and the track covers one third of a mile. There are picnic facilities on site.


Motorsport – Eagles Rock Climb

Date: 26th August

Time: 10.00

Venue: Bellerena, Limavady

Contact: declanmccay@gmail.com   Tel no: 028 7776 0650   Mob no: 07713 587264

The spectacular Eagles Rock Hill climb, one of Ireland’s oldest Hill climbs, previously run by the Coleraine and District Motor Club, Maiden City MC now run this bank holiday weekend event.


Ballycastle Annual Heavy Horse and Vintage show

Date: 26th August

Time:  Annual Heavy Horse Show from Council Offices Car Park, Mary Street, Ballycastle at 11:00.
Vintage Car & Tractor Parade assemble at Dalriada Hospital Car Park, Ballycastle at 15:30.

Venue: as above

Contact: jkmccarry@gmail.com     Tel no: 028 2076 3671

Once again the Lammas Fair draws near and for us that only means one thing, ‘Show Time’. Last years event proved to be very successful with the entrants travelling from far and wide to Ballycastle and proved very popular with locals and tourists.


Causeway Coast Mini Club Mini Weekend

Date: 26th – 27th August

Time: 17.30 Saturday evening from leaving at 19.00 from Bushmills Distillery to Portstewart

10.30 Sunday Static Show at West Bay, Portrush

Venue: Saturday at Bushmills Distillery and Sunday at West Bay, Portrush

Contact: jtmc@jonnytiger.wanadoo.co.uk    Tel no:  028 7083 5518

On Saturday evening the Mini “Dash” sets out from Bushmills Distillery and follows the coast road to Portstewart. On Sunday the static display showcases a vast array of Minis at the West Bay, Portrush, finishing with a cavalcade around the area.  www.ccminiclub.co.uk   This is a free event to come and spectate at.
To exhibit a Mini: £10 (per car) pre-booked, £15 on the day.


Children’s Street Theatre

Date: 27th  August

Time: 14.00pm and 16.00pm

Venue: Ballycastle seafront

Contact: ballycastlevic@causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk     Tel: 028 2076 2024

Part of the Council’s programme of free summer entertainment.  Summer entertainment  with Jim and Dr Nick.


The Auld Lammas Fair and Fireworks Display

Date:  27th -29th August

Time: Firework display Sunday 27th at 21:00
Trading Days Monday 28th – Tuesday 29th 09:00 – 21:00

Venue: Ballycastle

Contact: ballycastlevic@causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk   Tel no: 028 2076 2024

Visit Ireland’s traditional oldest fair which takes place on the last Monday and Tuesday of August.
This year’s Fair will be officially launched with a spectacular seafront fireworks display organised by Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council on Sunday night 27th August. This new addition to the programme will provide a memorable opening to a much loved event.

The present day fair provides street entertainment and market stalls. Two days of trading, bargaining, busking, amusements and street entertainment competitions to add to the atmosphere in the beautiful seaside resort of Ballycastle.


Naturally North Coast & Glens Artisan Market – Ballycastle Seafront

Date: 27th– 29th August

Time: 11.00-17.00

Venue: Ballycastle Seafront

Contact: info@naturallynorthcoastandglens.co.uk     Tel No: 07723 622 008

Naturally North Coast and Glens Market provides the opportunity to experience a unique artisan market in and around the North Coast and Glens region of Northern Ireland. Market visitors will have every sense tantalised through the colourful art and crafts, the delicious smell and taste of fresh food produce and the sound of musicians providing a backdrop to the buzz of traders and customers chatting and laughing.


Damhead Miniature Railway

Date: 28th August

Time: 12.00-17.00

Venue: 48 Damhead Road, Coleraine

Contact:  colerainevic@causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk    Tel: (028) 2587 8237   Mob: (07703) 254 595

Damhead Miniature Railway, in the heart of the countryside between Coleraine and Ballymoney, is a great place to visit with the children. The small trains can be travelled on by both the kids and adults and the track covers one third of a mile. There are picnic facilities on site.


Stand Up Paddleboard River Trail

Date: 28th August 2017

Time: as booked

Venue: Swanns Bridge, River Roe, Limavady

Contact: info@longlinesurfschool.co.uk, Tel: 07738128507

Flow with Nature down the River Roe whilst learning the skills and techniques of this increasingly popular sport.


Air Waves Portrush: Northern Ireland International Airshow

Date: 2nd – 3rd  September

Time: see programme nearer date

Venue: Eastern side of Portrush Resort

Contact: colerainevic@causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk   Tel no: 028 7034 4723

Air Waves Portrush International Airshow is ready for take-off. It is Ireland’s biggest airshow and it takes place over two action-packed days at the beginning of September each year. This free event is very popular with all age groups. It takes place on the eastern side of the resort, allowing use of a spectacular display line along the coast. As well as having amazing aerial aircraft displays to watch there is plenty to do and see at ground level with a wide range of attractions and activities.
All of the information about the 2 day event can be found on the web site: www.airwavesportrush.co.uk


Giant’s Causeway Coast Sportive

Date: 9th September

Time: see website nearer date

Venue: Ballycastle seafront

Contact: info@cycleni.com     Tel no: 028 9030 3930

The Giant’s Causeway Coast Sportive is a unique road cycling event based on the iconic North Coast of Ireland that offer an unforgettable cycling experience through some of the most breath-taking landscapes in Ireland.

This popular, non-competitive event will take place along the stunning North Coast and through the magical Glens of Antrim and attracts over 1000 participants.  Further details and entry fee can be checked on website closer to the event. Book using www.giantscausewaycoastsportive.com


Dragon boat Challenge at Drumaheglis Marina

Date: 9th September

Time: 10.30

Venue: Drumaheglis Marina

Contact: dragonboat@ballymoneyrotary.org     Tel no: 07500 878 998

Dragon Boat Challenge at Drumaheglis Marina enjoy the spectacle of Dragon Boat Racing on the River Bann. Drumaheglis Marina offers a venue to provide a great family day out, with onsite catering including BBQ with other family fun and entertainment organised on the day.  Racing starts at 10.30. Race entry £20 per person.
Entry forms are available at www.ballymoneyrotary.org


The 4 of Us play Portico this Saturday Night

This Saturday night, 26 August, The 4 of Us will perform at Portico in Portaferry as part of the popular Lough Lively Sessions.

Brothers Brendan and Declan Murphy from the critically-acclaimed The 4 of Us who will perform at Portico, Portaferry this Saturday night 26 August.

Listed in TV3’s Top 10 Best Irish Bands of All Time, The 4 of Us have been a steadfast part of Irish music for over 25 years.

In their critically acclaimed two-man show, brothers Brendan and Declan Murphy blend contemporary roots with rock; melodic songs and interweaving acoustic guitars, propelled by a stomp box rhythm.

The 4 Of Us shot to early fame in 1989 with their debut Songs for the Tempted, which featured the massive hits Mary and Drag My Bad Name Down. Sugar Island, their latest album, explores the Murphy brother’s early years growing up in a border town during the height of the troubles in Northern Ireland.

This is an evening of music not to be missed!

Tickets cost £10 and are on sale now  at www.visitardsandnorthdown.com or www.porticoards.com. Show time is 7.30pm.

Still to come at the Lough Lively Sessions in Portico are; Saffyre and Rapparees – book early to avoid disappointment.

The Lough Lively music events are supported by Ards and North Down Borough Council and The Arts Council of Northern Ireland.


Join #Smartmovers to Air Waves Portrush with Translink

Enhanced public transport options will ensure visitors to Air Waves Portrush enjoy a first class journey this year.

Organised by Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council with support from Tourism NI and a range of local sponsors, it is one of the most anticipated annual events across the Causeway Coast and Glens region.

Huge crowds are expected to descend on the resort on Saturday 2nd September and Sunday 3rd September for the spectacular free air show, and Translink is encouraging people to make full use of its bus and train services which offer convenience and value-for-money. A Family & Friends Ticket, for up to two adults and four children provides unlimited bus and train day travel for just £22 while throughout September, Goldline, Ulsterbus and NI Railways passengers can avail of a third off day return travel, after 9.30am.

Translink is also operating a free park and ride shuttle bus service between the event car park on Ballywillan Road and the Curran Gate public access point on Causeway Street from 9am-7pm on both days. Portrush railway line services will be enhanced including connections to/from Derry~Londonderry along with additional rail shuttle services between Coleraine and Portrush. Visitors travelling from Portrush to Portstewart for the Air Waves Portstewart Saturday night entertainment are encouraged to use the 140 bus service running at normal times. Additional capacity will be added to scheduled services and the enhanced summer train timetable between Coleraine and Portrush will be in operation.

This year’s Air Waves event promises an enhanced visitor experience with the hockey pitch in Portrush transformed into a dedicated event village area. It brings together a range of food vendors, stalls and children’s amusements. East Strand (Village South) will host the Lancaster Lodge hospitality marquee, Ulster Aviation Society, Car Village and STEM Village whilst Lansdowne (Village North) will host the Naturally North Coast and Glens Artisan Market, the Cadets Core, fun zone and trade stands. Public access to the event site will be from Curran Gate and Sand Dune Terrace along Causeway Street.

Ramore Head will be closed over both days from 11am – 6pm to accommodate helicopter landings while East Strand beach will be closed from the Burn to Curran Point along with Arcadia Beach.

For a first class experience, tickets are still available for the ever popular Silver Wings Chalet (over 18 only) located at the Salmon Fisheries. Set directly under the central flight line of action, guests can enjoy an exclusive opportunity to meet the pilots, allocated car parking, a tailored buffet lunch with afternoon refreshments and a cash bar. Or why not relax in the outdoor enclosure and browse through a complimentary souvenir programme. This year, guests can avail of FREE whiskey tasting with Bushmills Distillery (Saturday only) and a chance to win some bespoke prizes, all for the special price of £65 per person, per day.

For more information go to www.airwavesportrush.co.uk. For further details about Translink visit www.translink.co.uk or call 028 9066 6630.

To find out more about what is happening across the Borough go to www.visitcausewaycoastandglens.com or call 028 7034 4723.

Get ready for Swedish a cappella sensation The Real Group to kick off this years’ Choir Festival in Derry


This year’s City of Derry International Choir Festival has announced the final line-up of guest artists for its autumn event, due to take place 25 to 29 October.

In addition to the world-class vocal ensemble Tenebrae, announced earlier this year, the festival will open its doors with Swedish a cappella sensation The Real Group on Wednesday 25 October in St. Columb’s Hall. Known world-wide for their vocal exploration of jazz, pop and folk music, the group has become one of the cornerstones of the modern a cappella genre and has toured internationally for more than 30 years with the voice as their sole instrument.

The festival will also see the second outing of its Festival Chorus, a massed choir made up of members of every choir in the city and local singing enthusiasts, who will come together for a special performance of John Rutter’s Gloria, joined by the Ulster University Chamber Choir and award-winning Codetta. The 100-strong choir will be accompanied by internationally-regarded organist Catherine Ennis, brass and percussion in the stunning surroundings of the Guildhall on Thursday 26 October.

After audiences are wowed by choral masters Tenebrae in St. Columb’s Hall on Friday 27 October, the festival will host a late-night event in The Glassworks featuring ‘atmosfolk’ duo Saint Sister, Morgan MacIntyre and Derry native Gemma Doherty, with their mix of soulful vocal harmonies, dreamy synth and electro-acoustic harp.

Ciaran Scullion, Head of Music for Arts Council Northern Ireland, principle funder of the festival, commented, “The City of Derry International Choir Festival has quickly established an international reputation as a major celebration of the choral tradition with an impressive 60 choirs  taking part in the 2016 festival, reaching total audiences of 15,000. This year sees yet another impressive programme featuring professional, world-class, award-winning choirs alongside local and national choirs from the UK and Ireland.  In only 4 years, the festival has achieved excellent artistic profile, demonstrated significant benefits to the local economy, engaged the communities of Derry-Londonderry and put Northern Ireland on the world map for all the right reasons.”

With such an eclectic and spectacular line-up of guest artists, the festival is sure to feature something for every taste in music and tickets are now on sale for all events via the Millennium Forum.

For all festival information and updates visit www.derrychoirfest.com