On the Water activities for Foyle Maritime Festival

On the Water is the only place to be!

Photo Rick Tomlinson

How often have you admired the River Foyle but wondered what the walled city must look like from out on the water? Whether it’s swimming across it, flying above it or sailing along it, your options are endless at this year’s Foyle Maritime Festival.

Opportunities abound thanks to the packed programme put together by the Loughs Agency in association with Derry City and Strabane District Council.

Kevin Wilson, Director of Development with the Loughs Agency said: “The Loughs Agency is looking forward to the Maritime Festival as an opportunity to highlight the potential of the Foyle for the development of marine tourism. A range of exciting trips and taster sessions has been arranged, in partnership with local activity providers, to showcase what can be enjoyed on the river (canoeing, sailing, paddle boarding)!”

First up is the Foyle Safari from July 14 – 21. Three times a day, Inish Adventures is offering river safaris to take in the historic sights of Derry – from the river, of course – in two large open canoes accommodating up to 24 people. Or you can join them for a sailing taster session under the guidance of experienced instructors for either a group or individual activity.

Far and Wild are offering two very different experiences on the water. The Foods of the Foyle tour will travel by canoe along Lough Foyle on a two hour historical and gastronomical tour which will include a wild camping experience as well as savouring local produce. Alternatively, the stand up paddle board yoga sessions will see you swap a yoga mat for a paddle board – but no experience of either yoga or stand up paddle boarding is required. All you need is an open mind to try something new. Both activities depend on the tide but pre-booking is essential.

If you’re not content with just being on the water and would prefer to be in the water, City of Derry Swimming Club has organised a swim in the River Foyle with around 100 participants taking to the open water on the penultimate day of the Festival, July 21st.

For the ultimate ‘getting away from it all’, join Foyle Paddlers on the evening of Thursday, July 19th for the festival favourite ‘Twilight Paddle’. Deck your canoe and yourself with lights and glow sticks and illuminate the river as part of a large group that receives a great welcome at the marina. There are just two departures, at 7 pm and 8.30 pm, so booking is essential.

Even if you’re not feeling adventurous enough to try out some of the trips, you can still experience life on-board a boat by taking in the Clipper 70 Experience (over 18s only) or the free Clipper 2017-18 Race Fleet Open Boat tour where crew members will give tours and talk about their time sailing the ocean waves.

Two of the Tall Ships will also be docked along the riverside for anyone who wants to enjoy an older style of sail. The Phoenix, star of countless TV and movie productions, returns while the Kaskelot makes its Foyle Maritime Festival debut. Visitors can explore the ‘mini museum’ while finding out what skills it takes to sail and maintain such a ship. The crew will be on hand to answer questions.

Jessie Atkinson, Ship Operations Manager, said: “We are very excited to be bringing Kaskelot to Foyle for the Maritime Festival 2018. It is a particular treat to be coinciding with a stopover for the Clipper Race yachts, an opportunity to see traditional and modern sailing vessels side by side. We look forward to dropping our gangway and opening for visitors – see you there!”

But if you really can’t be convinced to set foot on a boat, then enjoy watching the Foyle River Races from dry land. This new and exciting event has been developed for the festival by the Loughs Agency in partnership with rowing, canoeing, sailing and open water swimming clubs across the Foyle area. Live commentary will be provided for each of the races with Prize Giving Events in the Festival Village afterwards.

Or for the ultimate spectator sport, what about watching adrenaline junkies soar into the sky on their jet packs? Some of the world’s finest flyboard riders will cruise through the air along the riverfront from Thursday 19th until Sunday 22nd.

Flyboard Fun said: “We are thrilled and honoured to be a part of the Foyle Maritime Festival 2018 and we cannot wait to see the excitement in people’s eyes, seeing us jet up to the sky, soar through the air and high-five people in the crowd. We like to ‘involve’ the visitors so that they too feel part of the show.”

After the exhaustion of all that activity – or spectating – you can collapse on the beach; the city beach, that is, which will be located along the quay so don’t forget to bring a bucket and spade!

Helena Hasson, Festival Co-ordinator with Derry City and Strabane District Council, said: “Foyle Maritime Festival promises to put the spotlight on our magnificent River Foyle and there is a packed programme of activities to ensure as many people as possible have the opportunity to get out on the water and enjoy our greatest asset. With a range of free and low-cost events appealing to a wide age-range, there is always something to appeal in the festival programme which you can find on our website.”

Please check the festival website, www.foylemaritime.com for information on start times, durations, prices and booking tickets for all events. Note that a minimum age restriction may apply in the interests of safety and supervision. Pre-booking is highly recommended.

Top Authors for Lunchtimes at Hewitt Summer School

Among the most popular events at recent John Hewitt International Summer Schools in Armagh, supported by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council, have been the Lunchtime Readings featuring prizewinning fiction writers who read from and talk about their recent work to some of Northern Ireland’s top writers and broadcasters.

And this year’s Lunchtime series, which runs at The Market Place Theatre in Armagh from 23 to 27 July, with readings starting at a later time of 1.30pm each day, will not disappoint local book lovers and those visiting Armagh for the Summer School, as another attractive line-up of Lunchtime Readings includes Liz Nugent, Mary O’Donnell as well as the best-selling English novelist, Patrick Gale.

Patrick Gale’s first two novels were published by Abacus on the same day in 1986, just three years after he graduated from the University of Oxford. Since then he has published a further 13 novels, several collections of short stories, novellas and a biography of the writer Armistead Maupin. And he has recently turned his hand to screenwriting with the BBC drama, “The Man In the Orange Shirt”.

Patrick’s most recent works are the Costa nominated “A Placed Called Winter” and the Richard and Judy Bok Club bestseller, “A Perfectly Good Man” and he will be talking about these on Monday 23 July to C.L. Dallat, the Co Antrim poet and broadcaster who now lives in London.

Before becoming a full-time writer, Liz Nugent worked in Irish film, theatre and television. In 2014 her first novel, ”Unravelling Oliver”, was a Number One bestseller and won the Crime Fiction Prize in the 2014 Irish Book Awards. Her second novel, “Lying in Wait” went straight Fiction Awards at the Irish Book Awards in 2014. And her second novel, “Lying in Wait” also went straight to Number One in the Irish bestseller charts and won her a second Irish Book Award.

During her JHISS Lunchtime event in Armagh on Tuesday 24 July, Liz will read from and talk about her deliciously sinister new thriller and already a Sunday Times Top 10 Bestseller, “Skin Deep”. And she will be in conversation with Northern novelist, Claire Allan, whose own recently published thriller, “Her Name Was Rose” has been most favourably reviewed.

Mary O’Donnell is one of Ireland’s most influential writers of the last three decades. Over her illustrious career she has produced seventeen books, including four novels, two short story collections and seven collections of poetry. She is perhaps best known for her monumental debut novel The Light Makers (1992), the second edition of which was issued in 2017.

For her Lunchtime event on Wednesday 25 July, Mary will read from “Empire: A Novella and Six Stories”, her new collection of linked stories, published by Arlen House, and she will be in conversation with the well-known Northern novelist and short story writer, Jan Carson.

Sheila Llewellyn, is an English author of Welsh heritage, who has lived in Co. Fermanagh for many years. She has won the PJ O’Connor RTE Radio Drama award and has been shortlisted twice for the much coveted Costa Short Story Prize. On Thursday 26 July at 1.30pm, she will be reading from and talking to writer and broadcaster, Malachi O’Doherty, about her stirring debut novel, “Walking Wounded”, a book set in a psychiatric hospital between the end of the Second World War and the founding of the NHS.

There will be a warm welcome on Friday 27 July for Co Armagh writer and actor, Michael Hughes, who will return home to read from and talk about his powerful new novel, “Country”, a vivid and brutal reimagining of Homer’s “Iliad”, the oldest war story of them all, set in the Troubles of late twentieth century South Armagh.

Novelist, David Park, one of the most voices in contemporary writing, will also be appearing at this year’s Hewitt Summer School, but rather than do a Lunchtime Reading, David will be in conversation with broadcaster, Malachi O’Doherty, and photographer, Sonya Whitefield, at 7.00pm on Monday 23 July.

Tickets for individual JHISS Lunchtime readings cost £7.00 and these are available at the Box Office at The Market Place Theatre, Tel. 028 3752 1821 or they may be booked online: vistarmagh.com/marketplacetheatre     For further information see the Summer School brochure or website: www.johnhewittsociety.org

What’s On Causeway Coast and Glens w/c 2nd July 2018

Adrian Margey Summer Open Studio Weekends

Date: 29th – 1st July

Time: Fri & Sat 11am-5.30pm Sun 12noon-5.30pm

Venue: Adrian Margey Gallery, 99 Main Street Portrush

Contact: 07841 593 762 adrianmargey@googlemail.com

Pop-up artist studio and gallery space featuring the work of Adrian Margey and Evana Bjourson will be open to the public during weekends in summer.


Summer Kids Surf Camp

Date: 29th June- 2nd Sept

Time: 10am-12noon

Venue: Long Line Surf School, Benone

Contact: 07738 128 507 info@longlinesurfschool.co.uk

Surf school for children aged 6-12 years including surfing, beach games and safety designed to help children learn in a fun environment surrounded by other children. £15 per child per session.


Summer Holiday Adventures at Foylehov activity Centre

Date: 29th June-2nd Sept


Venue: Foylehov Activity Centre, 71 Carrowclare Road, Limavady

Contact: 028 7772 2235 info@foylehov.com

Open every day lots of outdoor activities including hovercraft flying, powerturn off road buggies, laser combat, archery, clay pigeon shooting and football golf.


Causeway Coast Foodie Tours – Catch & Sea

Date: 30th June


Venue: Departing North Pier, Portrush Harbour

Contact: 07912 408 256 causewayfoodie@gmail.com

A sunrise fishing trip, catch your breakfast aboard The Causeway Lass and have it prepared along with local seasonal produce for a memorable feast at Babushka.  £55, booking essential.


Dog Friendly Tours

Date: 30th June

Time: 10am-2pm

Venue: Meeting at East Strand Car Park

Contact: 07400 094 252

An outdoor walking experience for dog owners, stopping to taste great local food and drink.  £40 One dog per human.


Pirates of Portrush

Date: Sat 30th June – 1st July

Time: from 11am

Venue: Portrush

Contact: 028 7082 2442 chairman.portrushheritage@gmail.com

A great children’s outing at the seaside based around the exploits of a Scottish Pirate called Tavish Dhu.  There will be drama, music, a street parade, floats and children’s entertainers.


Naturally North Coast and Glens Artisan Market visits the Pirates off Portrush

Date: 1st July

Time: 12noon-5pm

Venue: Antrim Gardens, Portrush

Contact: 07723 622 008 info@naturallynorthcoastandglens.co.uk

Artisan market, selling a range of handmade art, craft and local food produce.


Unicorn Tales at Rosepark Farm Ballymoney

Date: 1st July


Venue: 98 Bravallen Road, Ballymoney

Contact: 028 2766 5554 rosepark_farm@hotmail.com

See Facebook Rosepark Farm Ballymoney for further details.


Ballykelly Bank Walk

Date: 1st July

Time: 2.30-4.30pm

Venue: Meeting at Ballykelly Car park at bottom of Station Road.

Contact: 028 2075 2100 enquiries@ccht.org

Join Causeway Coast and Glens Heritage Trust for a Sunday stroll along Ballykelly Bank.  This is as inspiring off road, level walk, for most of its length.  Free admission Booking advisable.


Summer Set Programme at Carrowmena

Date: 1st July-31 Aug


Venue: Carrowmena Activity Centre, 100 Carrowclare Road, Limavady

Contact: 028 77776 3431 kieran@carrowmena.co.uk

Fun and adventure awaits you every day this summer. Full and half day packages available.


Music Sundays at Downhill Demesne

Date: 1st July

Time: 12.00noon-3.00pm

Venue: Downhill Demesne, Mussenden Road, Castlerock

Contact: 028 7084 8728 downhilldemesne@nationatrust.org.uk

Enjoy some local musical talent in Mussenden Temple to accompany your afternoon walk.  Free event.  Normal admission charges apply for the venue.


Mini Pony Camp at Crindle Stables

Date: 2nd -5th July


Venue: 6 Carrowclare Road, Limavady

Contact: 07738 516 106

Learn how to look after your pony with help from advanced riders.  Mini camp includes riding lessons, stable management, pony games and lots of fun whilst improving skills and confidence.


Coastal Crafters – Craft and Collectables Fiar Portballintrae

Date: 4th July

Time: 10am – 5pm

Venue: Portballintrae

Contact: 07850 377 644

Handcrafted jewellery, knitwear, greetings cards, bags, photographs, wood craft, candles, spices and collectables. Free admission.


Portrush Summer Theatre

Date: 4th – 28th July

Time: 8pm

Venue: Portrush Town Hall

Contact: 028 7082 9539 www.audf.org.uk/portrush

Performances from Wednesday to Saturday each week during July and August.


Ballycastle Food Tour

Date: 6th & 7th July

Time: 10am – 2pm

Venue: Departing Ballycastle Visitor Information

Contact: 07718276612

Local artisan award winning food and drink tour covering 6 venues in the historical town of Ballycastle. Cost £40 pp. Bookings can also be made through Causeway Coast and Glens Visitor Information Centres.


St Patrick’s Summer Recitals

Date: 5 July

Time: 12.30pm

Venue: St Patrick’s Church of Ireland, 37 Church Street, Coleraine

Contact: 028 7034 4213 admin@stpats.co.uk

Lunch-time recitals. Free admission.


North West 200 People and Places Exhibition

Date: 4th May – 1st September

Time: Open Mon-Thurs &Sat 9am-5pm Fri 9am-4.30pm Special Sunday Opening NW200 week.


Venue: Ballymoney Museum, Townhead Street BT53 6BE

Contact: 028 2766 0230 cms@causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk


New exhibition featuring people and places from the Chronicle and Constitution Archive, (1987 to 1997), the emergency services; display of bikes, leathers and NW200 memorabilia. Admission free.


From Russia with Love, Marie Brennan

Date: 12 May – 21 July

Time: – Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm, Saturday 10am to 1pm

Venue: Flowerfield Art Centre

Contact: 028 7083 1400

Marie Brennan takes you on a journey to the winter snow filled streets of the beautiful city of St Petersburg in Russia, portraying a fascinating photographic insight of this marvellous city. Admission free. 


North by North

Date: 14 May – 1 Sept


Venue: Riverside Theatre, University of Ulster, Cromore Road, Coleraine

Contact: 028 7012 3123 www.riversidetheatre.org

North by North is an exhibition of new work by artist Jonathan Brennan. Working in pen and ink, print, photography and digital, Brennan has been travelling around the Causeway Coast & Glens area over a series of months making images of things that inspire him.


A Stroll through the Glens, Marie Brennan

Date: 8 June – 21 July

Time: 9.30am – 5pm

Venue: Roe Valley Arts & Cultural Centre, Limavady

Contact: 777 60650 toursim@rvacc.co.uk

Inspired by the natural beauty and scenery that surrounds her home town of Bushmills, this exhibition by local photographer Marie Brennan is an exquisite study of colour, light and detail. Free admission.


Limavady Art Group

Date: 8th June – 21st July

Time: Monday to Saturday 9.30am to 5pm

Venue: Roe Valley Arts & Cultural Centre

Contact: 028 7776 0650

An annual showcase opportunity for Limavady Art Group facilitated by artist/tutor Louie Winward. Expect a variety of landscapes, still life and portraits from this talented and dynamic group of artists.


The Fabulous Student Showcase

Date: 2nd – 29th June

Time: Mon to Friday 9am – 5pm, Sat 10am to 1pm

Venue: Flowerfield Art Centre, Portstewart

Contact: 028 7083 1400 info@flowerfield.org

Painted, potted, drawn, stitched, fired, fused or written – whatever they did, well here it is in this first ever combined student exhibition by the Flowerfield and Ballymoney recreational class students.


Celebrate Art and Craft in Ards and North Down with Creative Peninsula

Tickets on sale from tomorrow Thursday 28 June

Creative Peninsula launched with Pottery and Paint
Creative Peninsula, Northern Ireland’s largest celebration of Art and Craft, takes place from 3 – 15 August 2018 and offers free and bookable opportunities for people of all ages and levels of experience to see, learn about and even ‘try their hand’ at a host of different art and craft forms practiced in the local area. It is organised by Ards and North Down Borough Council.
Abstract artist Susanna Banks showcases a range of colourful prints to Mayor of Ards and North Down, Cllr Richard Smart, which is just one of the many exhibitions taking place as part of the 2 week event.

Creative Peninsula, Northern Ireland’s largest celebration of Art and Craft was officially launched in Ards and North Down this week. Now in its 17th year, this thriving annual event brings together local artists and craftspeople to demonstrate their skills and showcase their work.

Taking place from Friday 3 until Wednesday 15 August 2018, Creative Peninsula, organised by Ards and North Down Borough Council, offers free and bookable opportunities for people of all ages and levels of experience to see, learn about and even ‘try their hand’ at a host of different art and craft forms practiced in the local area. Featuring, open studios, tours, exhibitions, workshops, demonstrations and more. Creative Peninsula is an ideal way to experience what the local art and craft industries have to offer.

The programme kicks-off with ‘Creative Peninsula in the Square’ at Conway Square in Newtownards on Friday 3 August.  For one day only the space will be transformed into a tented arts and crafts village with more than 30 artists and makers displaying and selling their work.  Free demonstrations including throwing on a potter’s wheel, acrylic painting, pastels, printing sculpting and wool spinning will run throughout the day.

New to the programme for 2018 is the Late-Night Art Tour. Prepare for an evening tour with a difference! Hop on a late-night Art Bus to visit some of the Creative Peninsula open studios for an insight into how the artworks are created. Enjoy nibbles or a glass of wine/craft beer at each location and an opportunity to chat to artists and makers. Taking in a total of five studios, the tour will depart from and return to North Down Museum on Wednesday 8 August.

Mayor of Ards and North Down, Councillor Richard Smart said:

“With over 20,000 attendees each year, Creative Peninsula has become one of the most inspirational, educational and vocational creative festivals attracting people from all corners of Northern Ireland. Ards and North Down is very fortunate to have one of the largest concentrations of artists and craftspeople living and working here and unsurprisingly the area has a thriving creative industry. We are delighted to be able to offer this event again which allows artists and craftspeople showcase their knowledge and members of the public to learn.”

Arts and Heritage Manger for Ards and North Down Borough Council, Emily Crawford also commented:

“Earlier this year Ards and North Down launched its new ‘Blue:Green, Creatively Connected’ Strategy for tourism, regeneration and economic development which we will follow to bring prosperity and growth to the Borough. This strategy makes use of the Borough’s three particular strengths, our landscape, the creativity of our people and our proximity to places of opportunity. Our distinctiveness is derived in a large part from these three assets and the synergies between them and our creativity is an important part of this. We are delighted to have such a talented and skilled industry and to be able to play homage to this via this festival.”

The 2018 Creative Peninsula brochure is available to download at visitardsandnorthdown.com/creative-peninsula.  Tickets for bookable events are also available from this website.

You can pick up a programme or find out more information on all the events on offer from Ards Arts Centre, Ards Crafts and North Down Museum, at any of the local Visitor Information Centres (Ards, Bangor and Portaferry) or by contacting the Council directly on 0300 013 3333.

Toast your success with the Europa Hotel!

Taylor Kirk from the Europa Hotel is inviting students to celebrate their graduation day with family and friends in Belfast’s best loved hotel.

Press Eye – Belfast – Northern Ireland – 21st June 2018

From 28th June until 4th July, guests can enjoy a special Graduation Afternoon Tea with glass of Prosecco for £30 from 2pm – 5pm or a delicious 3-course lunch or dinner with glass of Prosecco from only £35 per person. Located just a few minutes walk from the prestigious Queens University and only a 10 minute walk from the Waterfront Hall, the Europa Hotel is the ideal location to celebrate your graduation in style! For more information or to book call 028 9027 1066 or email 


Aquatic adventures explored at Science of Water Marquee

All things aquatic will be explored in the Science of Water marquee during Foyle Maritime Festival next month.

From building a boat to delving into the River Foyle’s rich past, visitors will be able to view these exciting events happen right before their eyes.

3.+Bringing science and technology to life in the most imaginative and entertaining way, the Science of Water marquee, sponsored by DuPont™ Kevlar® to celebrate its 30th anniversary, has a full programme of activities for all ages along Queen’s Quay during the festival from July 14th to July 22nd.

Speaking about the extensive programme of activities, shows and installations for the Science of Water, Paul Kirkpatrick from DuPont™ Kevlar® explained: “As Education Sponsor for the festival, we really wanted to deliver a STEM focused programme that would encourage children and young people to develop an interest in science, technology, engineering and maths. STEM is fun, exciting and opens up a world of discovery for curious minds – and we’re delighted to be supporting this new attraction at the festival for 2018.”

STEM Aware is sure to engage passers-by with its range of activities which will make learning seem so easy – and fun. Fergal the Legenderry Shark, guided by his mermaid friend, will test your sense of smell and bring you on the Voyage of a Shark. How can a shark smell in water? Or you could try your hand at creating a cork boat and then race it along a water channel. Perhaps you’ll don some goggles and gloves to make your own Sea Safe Slime – and what about taking on your own Foyle Minecraft Challenge by building a boat on a virtual River Foyle map?

The opportunities are endless and to round it all off, the public will be invited to participate in the Wet Wet Wet Science Show, with a series of interactive activities requiring volunteers to help demonstrate some splashing science theories – will you spot the Wet Wet Wet songs interspersed? And as the title suggests, the audience may end up ‘wet wet wet’ themselves!

Roisin Crawford, Creative Director with STEM Aware, said: “We are delighted to be facilitating some very exciting activities for the whole family in the Science of Water marquee, we look forward to everyone getting a little messy and perhaps a little wet for science!”

A drier, but no less entertaining show will come from Blue Eagle Productions, which has a wealth of experience in theatre education around the UK. They will present ‘Professor Flo and the River Foyle Show’, aimed at 8 – 12 year olds but guaranteed to get a laugh from all ages. The audience will see Professor Flo wonder why the River Foyle is hardly used anymore before she meets four historical characters who remember when the river was central to so much that happened not only in the city but in the wider area – from the Spanish Armada to the Second World War with all the shipbuilding and bridge building in between. The professor will also take a look at the environmental aspects of the river.

Jonathan Burgess from Blue Eagle Productions created the 25 minute show specially for this year’s Foyle Maritime Festival. He said: “I think we have one of the most splendid natural resources in the river Foyle but everything turns its back on it! The perception is that the river is just something that’s there but in the past it was seen as a vital component. I remember being on the quay a lot when I was a boy in the late 1970s and 1980s. My father was a coal importer and when I was about 7 or 8, I was on a Chinese coal boat, The Regent Ranger, which was one of the biggest ships ever here. The Foyle Maritime Festival and Clipper Race yachts bring the focus onto the river – how great it would be if we could keep it there!”

Among the other attractions will be a boat built in real-time within the marquee.

Driftwood Canoe Club will be on-site throughout the week with a team of expert boat builders making one of their specialities, a hand-crafted strip wood Canadian canoe.

Members of the public will be able to watch the experts at their work and maybe even lend a hand by making seats or paddles.

Hosted by Derry City and Strabane District Council, the canoe club will be working in association with North West Regional College, supported by the Loughs Agency.

John Duddy from Driftwood said: “This is a unique challenge as it took us nine months to build our last canoe – this time we will do it in 80 hours! Our club was set up in 2016 after members enrolled on a boat-building course with NWRC and we welcome the opportunity to work with the College again.”

John Cartin from NWRC said: “The College is excited about this new innovative joint project which has evolved into student work-based learning which is so important to our ethos of student engagement. The young people will improve their employability skills by working on communication, problem-solving, resilience and aspiration.”

The Driftwood Club will also be putting on the Foyle Bubble Challenge, a fun, fast-paced and interactive canoe challenge where a three person team will tackle a themed obstacle course in a Canadian canoe at Foyle Marina. Through the city gates, dodging the water soakers, around the Guildhall and all against the clock in front of a bumper festival crowd with a live commentary! Heats will take place on Monday, July 16th and Tuesday, July 17th between 12 noon and 6 pm, with a grand final on Saturday, July 21st from 6 – 8 pm. For further details and to book, go to: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-foyle-bubble-challenge-by-driftwood-canoe-club-clipper-week-tickets-46321374478?aff=ebdssbdestsearch

Jacqueline Whoriskey, Festival and Events Manager with Derry City and Strabane District Council, is delighted with the standard and variety of programming for this new attraction, saying: “We’ve worked closely with our Education Sponsor and local organisations to develop a quality educational programme as part of the event and believe that the diversity and range of events and activities on offer will be well received by visitors to the event.”

For the full festival programme, visit: foylemaritime.com or you can follow on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/foylemaritimefestival and on Twitter @Foylemaritime


Ulster Museum Gets Fashionable with Feminism

Designs from top names in fashion including Missoni and Dior are among pieces which will go on show today at the Ulster Museum in a new exhibition, entitled Fashion and Feminism.

From runways to picket lines, the pieces in the exhibition tell the story of women who have made confident feminist statements through fashion. Fashion and Feminism examines the attitudes of feminists, from as far back as the 1800s right up to today, as they utilise fashion to express their belief in the social, political and economic equality of men and women.

Items on display include an elegant walking suit perfect for a suffragette ‘dressed to protest’ (1910), a Missoni ‘Pussy Hat’ (2017), based on the worldwide ‘Women’s March’ of January 2017, and the iconic ‘We Should All Be Feminists’ T-shirt designed by Dior (2017), inspired by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s essay and TEDx talk of the same name. Additional highlights of the exhibition include beautiful gowns designed in the early 1900s’ by the most powerful Parisian designers in the fashion world such as the Callot Sisters, Madeleine Vionnet, Jeanne Lanvin and Madame Grès.

A key highlight is a piece on loan from London-based designers Teatum Jones’ current AW18 collection which has the theme of ‘Global Womanhood’.

Art Curator Charlotte McReynolds from National Museums NI said: “From couture to casual wear, fashion has managed to make statements of how women want to be represented. This exhibition provides an opportunity for visitors to the Ulster Museum to explore the correlation between self-expression and fashion over the centuries.”

She added: “This exhibition celebrates some of the most extraordinary female fashion designers of the modern era, including Madeleine Vionnet, Mary Quant and Vivienne Westwood. From suffragettes using fashion as part of their campaign to win the vote, to contemporary designers shedding light on social injustices, this exhibition has a lot to discuss about feminist culture.”

A selection of talks and workshops will also accompany the exhibition, providing a more in-depth exploration of the links between fashion and feminism. Events include a lecture by Cally Blackman, fashion historian, author and lecturer at St Martin’s College of Fashion and Design (27 September).  Blackman’s talk is entitled ‘The Sartorial Strategy of the Suffragette Sisterhood’ and she will be discussing how the suffragettes used fashion to promote their cause.  On 25 October fashion writer and social justice campaigner Tansy Hoskins addresses the question ‘Can Fashion be Feminist?’ as she raises the profile on labour rights in the fashion industry.

Fashion and Feminism is part of National Museums NI’s year-long thematic programme Hear Her Voice which highlights the female artists, designers and iconic figures in its collections, through a series of exhibitions and events across the museums.

The exhibition opens to the public on Friday 22 June 2018 and runs until 2 June 2019. Admission is free.

For further details of Hear Her Voice exhibitions and events visit www.nmni.com/hearhervoice

Homespun Youth Drama Bursaries

The Council is delighted to invite applications for eight bursaries to attend one of our Homespun Youth Drama Groups for the new semester commencing in September.

The Bursary Scheme would offer children and young people who live in our Borough to a year’s free attendance at one of our Homespun Youth Drama Groups.

We offer two separate Homespun Youth Drama Groups, one in The Eyre Studio, Antrim and one at The Courtyard Theatre, Newtownabbey, both of these groups offer two classes based on age categories.

The Homespun Youth Drama Groups offer children and young people an opportunity to work under the direction of professionals who specialise in Dance, Drama and Musical Theatre.

The Bursary Award is available to any resident in the Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough, aged from 7-18 yrs. old who are in full-time education.

If you would like to apply, please email leeann.murray@antrimandnewtownabbey.gov.uk for an application form.  Applications open on Thursday 28 June and close on Wednesday 11 July 2018 at 4pm.


No applications received after the closing date will be considered. The decision of Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council is final.


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


Portaferry Sails and Sounds Festival on the shores of Strangford Lough and Portaferry Town,  entering its 3rd successful year, is aiming to add and improve the festival each year with new events and keeping some of the popular traditional events. Highlights this year include Brian Boru Tall Ship, trips on Strangford Lough, kids entertainment, themed food talks,  and exhibits. The festival runs from the 28th June until the 1st July.


Our Wee Craft Village at Brownlow House in Lurgan will be hosting its first fair on Sat 30th June from 10.00 am – 3.00 pm`.  Another fun filled event with kids crafts, live demos, make and take sessions for all ages, plus 25+ craft stalls, with all handcrafted products.  There will be jewellery making, kids crafts, jumping clay for kids and art workshops and live demos for the adults.  The vintage car club will be also be exhibiting outside in the gardens and raising money for various charities.  Come along for a great family fun day out!  Entrance Fee £4.


The roads of Fermanagh will echo to the sound of racing bikes for the first time in 66 years when the Fermanagh 100 Road Races return to the county. The Enniskillen and District Motorcycle Club is set to host two days of racing on Friday 29th June and Saturday, June 30 on a three mile circuit based in the shadow of Cuilcagh Mountain. Organisers have promised that the course will feature a ‘little bit of everything’ ranging from wide fast straights with sweeping corners to blind jumps along narrow tree lined routes, only a few miles from the now famous stairway to heaven walk over Marble Arch Geopark and Lough Erne and local marinas. The race schedule will see a full day of practices on the Friday and on Saturday there will be an eleven race program with the Richard Britton Memorial Race to be the showcase of the day.


Don’t miss this year’s Cookstown Summer Carnival on Friday 29th June! The carnival parade begins at 7.00 pm with all the fun continuing until 10.00pm with live entertainment,  food village and a fairground.  Admission is free. Organised by The Hub for all the community.


This year’s St. Lurach’s Maghera Garden Fete and Vintage Rally takes place this Saturday 30th June.  There will be vintage vehicles, live music, strongmen, afternoon teas, Ulster Scots and Traditional Irish Music and free entertainment for the children. Ritchie Remo and David “Jonny Cash” Kelly with also be making a special appearance in the afternoon.


This Saturday 30th June the Organisers of “Pirates Off Portrush”, Portrush Heritage Group, will stage the 6th adventure of the notorious Pirate Off Portrush, Tavish Dhu when the town is invaded by the Emperor of The Orient. The Emperor and his Dragon Queen, with her ferocious Dragons and Ninja Warriors, are searching for Skerry Island of the Seven Cities which they believe contains great riches. The Emperor has not reckoned on coming against Tavish, the fearless Pirate Off Portrush. The outcome, will be revealed at the festival, but be warned the town is full of Pirates and Ninja Warriors. Events kick-off at 11.00 am on Saturday with a Pirates Treasure Hunt, from the Portrush Atlantic Hotel, followed at 1.00 pm with the Pirate Dance and Pirate Dress Competitions at the Amphitheatre.


It’s party time at Roar and Explore, Daisy Farm Shopping Centre, when Moana, Batman and Spiderman come and play this Friday 29th June! This first Party Night will include singing and games from Princess and all-round heroine Moana plus a Super Hero Academy from both Batman and Spiderman, who will put you through your paces. There will be plenty of opportunity for photos and play in the roarsome Roar and Explore!

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.


Jacqueline McGonigle

10 Things to do This Week in NI!

DiscoverNorthernIreland.com has stacks of fun things to do across NI, from family days out to gigs and cultural events. Here are ten exciting things taking place this week (25 June – 1 July)


  1. Ballykelly Bank Walk, Derry~Londonderry, 1 July. Join Causeway Coast and Glens Heritage Trust for a Sunday stroll along Ballykelly Bank. This is an inspiring off-road level walk, for most of its length alongside a freshwater pond.
  2. Home National Deaf Bowls Championships, Bangor, 29 June – 1 July. After the successful British Championships, a request was made that the Home National Championships be held in Bangor. This four-day event attracts bowlers from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
  3. Pirates Off Portrush & Heritage Fair, 30 June – 1 July. Portrush Heritage Group will stage the sixth adventure of the notorious Pirates Off Portrush. This two-day fair includes the dramatic play, a treasure hunt, fancy dress competitions, storytelling and a parade plus much more.
  4. Celtronic Festival, Derry~Londonderry, 27 June- July. Ireland’s leading electronic music festival brings five days and nights of music events, film screenings, workshops, seminars, recording projects and much more at venues across the city of Derry.
  5. Portaferry Sails and Sounds, Portaferry, 28 June – 1 July. Boats from all over the UK and Ireland will converge on the loughshore town of Portaferry for a weekend of traditional Irish and Scottish music and dance. The event features workshops, children’s entertainment, land-based activities and music throughout the town.
  6. Belsonic 2018, Belfast, 15-30 June. Belsonic returns to Ormeau Park, as it brings a host of international headline acts to the heart of Belfast including Eric Prydz and The Script.
  7. The Wonder Tales – Portico, Portaferry, 29 June. Join spectacular duo Jane Talbot and Noel Harron for a rambunctious evening of storytelling and song. The stories in the show are original, dark fairytales or quirky, radical re-tellings and are all set locally.
  8. Sunday Band Concert, Newcastle, 1 July. Enjoy this free concert outside the Newcastle Centre by Ballylone Concert Flute Band as they perform a wide range of popular tunes. Bring a blanket or deckchair and enjoy some delightful entertainment on the promenade.
  9. Ballydougan Pottery Exhibition, Armagh, 1 July – 31 July. Craftswirl at Armagh Visitor Information Centre is delighted to be showcasing the award winning “Ballydougan Pottery” for its July exhibition.
  10. Maggie’s Yer Ma, Coleraine, 27 June. Loveable rogue Maggie Muff is back to the Riverside Theatre with a bang in this highly anticipated sequel to Leesa Harker’s smash hit trilogy.


For more information on these events or to plan a short break in Northern Ireland, visit  www.DiscoverNorthernIreland.com.