Healthy Mind Coach Advises On How To Deal With Anxiety And Fear During The Festive Season

As the holiday season approaches, many people find themselves grappling with anxiety and fear that can be exacerbated by the pressures and expectations associated with Christmas. 

This year, more than ever, it is important to acknowledge and address these emotions and seek support if needed.

The holiday season, traditionally a time of joy and togetherness, can also bring about a range of stressors that contribute to feelings of anxiety and fear. 

From financial strain to social obligations, the demands of the season can take a toll on mental wellbeing. This time of year adds an extra layer of uncertainty and anxiety for many, making it crucial to prioritise mental health during this time.

Sam Barr of Healthy Mind Coaching & Training in Belfast explained: “The festive season brings with it multiple stressors ranging from financial pressures to struggles with family dynamics. All of this tension causes anxiety and fear in the lead up to festivities.

“Unfortunately festive anxieties are common so at this time of the year it is essential to implement strategies to support and nurture your mental health. I hope that people feel ready to reach out and search for the support that they need at this time of year.”

Sam’s company, Healthy Mind Coaching offers a range of CBT and Positive Psychology based services for individuals and staff. The company offers a free 20-minute one-to-one introduction consultation as an opportunity to identify any mental or emotional wellbeing concerns and choose a path that works best for the client to find a resolution.

“Right now it is particularly important for individuals to reach out to mental health & wellbeing professionals to cope with the stressors that the festive season brings,” said Sam.

To help individuals navigate anxiety and fear during Christmas here are Sam’s top tips for the season.

1. Acknowledge Your Feelings

“It’s essential to recognise that it’s okay to feel anxious or fearful during the holidays. Simply acknowledging your emotions can be the first step towards managing them” said Sam.

2. Set Realistic Expectations

Sam said it’s important that people do not feel pressure to create a picture-perfect Christmas.

“It is okay to scale back on decorations, gifts, or social events if it reduces stress and anxiety” he added.

3. Plan And Budget

For many people the stresses and strains financially can cause havoc during the festive period.

Sam advised: “Create a realistic budget for holiday spending to avoid financial stress. Consider gifts or alternative celebrations that align with your budget.”

4. Self-Care

Prioritising self-care activities such as exercise, meditation, or deep breathing exercises are an important part of any weekly routine said Sam, he explained: “These can help manage stress and improve overall wellbeing.”

5. Reach Out For Support

“Don’t hesitate to lean on friends, family, or mental wellbeing professionals if you need support. Sharing your feelings with someone you trust can be incredibly therapeutic” said Sam

6. Limit Social Media

Sam warned that the curated holiday experiences shared on social media can intensify feelings of inadequacy or fear of missing out. 

He said: “Consider taking a break from social media if it negatively affects your mental health.”

7. Maintain Healthy Boundaries

Maintaining healthy boundaries is one of the hardest things for people to do around the Christmas season but something Sam said is vital to emotional and mental wellbeing.

He explained: “It is fine to say no to social events or obligations that feel overwhelming. Prioritise your own mental and emotional wellbeing.”

8. Focus On Gratitude

Sam advised: “Take time to reflect on the positive aspects of the holiday season, such as spending time with loved ones or engaging in meaningful traditions.”

9. Professional Help

“If anxiety or fear becomes overwhelming, seek help from a mental health and wellbeing professional” said Sam, adding: “They can provide guidance, support, and strategies tailored to your specific needs.”

10. Community And Volunteering

Engaging with your local community can be an excellent way of boosting your mental and emotional wellbeing during difficult periods.

Sam said: “Consider giving back to your community through volunteering. Acts of kindness can boost your mood and provide a sense of purpose. 

“Remember that you are not alone in experiencing anxiety and fear during the holidays. It is important to prioritise your mental wellbeing and seek help when needed. 

“This Christmas season, let us all strive for a more compassionate and understanding approach to ourselves and others.”

Learn more about Healthy Mind Coaching and Training or book your free 20-min consultation by calling Sam today on 07906 869616 or go to 

Northern Ireland’s Vulnerable at Risk: The Pressing Need for EV Charging Infrastructure

Renewables experts Everun call for immediate action to enhance EV charging facilities for mobility vehicle users

Renewables experts Everun are calling for the Northern Ireland government to prioritise an upgrade in the electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure across the country as soon as they return to business.

The company said not only does Stormont need to “get back to work” but that as soon as they do it is “vital” they address the critical shortfall in the EV charging infrastructure. 

According to sales and business development director at Everun, Ross Moffett, the gap in the infrastructure is having a disproportionate impact on the most vulnerable members of society.

He said: “A significant proportion of hybrid or electric vehicles in Northern Ireland are mobility cars, mainly used by those most in need within our community.

“However, the acute shortage of adequate EV charging infrastructure is a major concern. This deficit disproportionately affects people with mobility vehicles and those in densely populated areas who may not have personal driveways or parking facilities.”

The lack of accessible charging points is forcing many mobility car users to depend on the petrol or diesel part of their hybrid vehicles.

Mr Moffett explained this, in turn, negated the purpose of making environmentally friendly cars available under the motability schemes. 

He added: “This situation is far from the ideal we strive for in the renewable energy sector and raises serious concerns about equitable access to sustainable transportation.”

According to Mr Moffett a “comprehensive and multifaceted strategy to address this challenge” is absolutely essential. 

He emphasised the need to expand beyond the current focus on rapid ultra-fast chargers. “For instance, hybrids are equipped with a type 2 charging which can take up to 11kw, meaning that the rapid chargers simply won’t work,” he said. 

“More importantly, the location of these chargers is crucial – they should be situated in areas that offer comfort and amenities, particularly for those with disabilities.”

Addressing the financial barrier is also critical, as Mr Moffett pointed out the cost can often be prohibitive for those without additional disposable income that they can invest in such utilities.

“With the cheapest electric vehicle models priced around £27,000, EVs remain out of reach for a significant portion of the population and the proportion of people who would be classed vulnerable that need to be able to access EV chargers is high, without any incentives or financial support available they remain in a situation where they may have a hybrid car but they are not able to use it in the way in which it was meant,” he said.

Everun are addressing these challenges as best they can by developing innovative solutions such as combining solar panels with battery storage in housing or commercial developments to speed up the development of an infrastructure. 

Mr Moffett explained: “This approach allows solar energy to charge the batteries, which in turn can charge cars – creating a self-sufficient, sustainable ecosystem.”

And while this may be a potential solution to some of the problem it does require investment from developers in the early stages of their projects.

More often than not Mr Moffett said bureaucratic hurdles are what impedes the progress of these solutions.

He also highlighted the potential of renewable energies in stabilising energy prices, akin to a fixed-rate mortgage. 

“This predictability is invaluable for businesses, allowing them to budget effectively and plan for the future,” he said.

Looking at the wider context of Northern Ireland’s renewable energy strategy, Mr Moffett urged the need to view EV infrastructure as part of a larger, interconnected energy system. 

“This system should seamlessly integrate various forms of renewable energy, from wind and solar to emerging technologies,” he said. 

“By doing so, we can ensure that our transition to electric vehicles is not only about replacing petrol and diesel cars but also about building a resilient, sustainable energy ecosystem.

“It is important that we adapt current policies and regulatory frameworks to support the rapid deployment of EV charging infrastructure. 

“Streamlining planning processes, providing incentives for the installation of charging points, and ensuring that these installations are accessible to all, regardless of where they live or their level of mobility, is crucial.”

For Everun engagement with all stakeholders including government, industry, local communities, and individual citizens is absolutely essential to Northern Ireland meeting its 2030 goals and creating an EV charging network that doesn’t discriminate. 

Mr Moffett added: “The establishment of a comprehensive, accessible EV charging network in Northern Ireland is not just about meeting our 2030 Climate Action Plan targets; it’s about fulfilling societal and economic needs.

“By addressing this gap, we ensure that the benefits of renewable energy extend to everyone, especially those who rely on it the most.”

Offers of the week from Discover Northern Ireland

Stormont Hotel, County Antrim

Enjoy, a relaxing evening in this four-star hotel after exploring the delights of East Belfast. The imposing Stormont Buildings are just opposite, and you can wander in the estate’s expansive grounds or explore one of the world’s leadings tourist attractions at Titanic Belfast. Enjoy a B&B break with tickets to Titanic Belfast from £180 based on two sharing. Visit for more information.

The Manor House Country Hotel, County Fermanagh

Enjoy beautiful views of Lough Erne from this lovely four-star hotel. It’s offering a special Black Friday deal of £110 per room based on two people sharing from Sunday-Thursday.

This includes B&B and use of the swimming pool, sauna, steam room, jacuzzi and outdoor hot tub. This is a superb way to ease into the winter.

Visit for more information.

Glenann Cottage, County Antrim

This beautifully restored traditional whitewashed farmhouse offers breathtaking views of the village
of Cushendall and on a clear day Scotland and the Mull of Kintyre. Built early in the last century it’s the perfect location to explore the Glens and the Causeway Coast or simply snuggle up in front of the log fire and relax. It’s a quaint and cosy wonderful winter escape. It is dog friendly and you can avail of early check in and late check out. Its special winter warmer offer is £250 for two nights.
Sleeps five. Visit for more information.

Book in advance to avoid disappointment. Subject to availability.
For more information on what’s on or to plan a short break in Northern Ireland, visit

10 things to do in Northern Ireland

Here are ten exciting things to do 27 November- 3 December

1. Walking with the Snowman™, Hillsborough, County Down, 27 November- throughout December. Raymond Briggs’ beloved Snowman™ is brought to life in a trail around the stunning gardens – a perfect Christmas treat for families and fans of all ages. Can you find the 12 giant  Snowman™ sculptures, each beautifully hand painted by a different artist? Along your way, you may also discover a special garden play trail, a royal walled garden and meandering waterways along with plenty of space to explore and play. Finish off all that exploring with a warming hot chocolate and festive treat from the café. On select days, you can also see special screenings of the iconic animated film! Check website for details.

2. Ghosts of Winterly Manor , Belfast County Antrim, 2 December – 31 st January. W5 brings a brand-new experience for the winter months in this low-light walk-through experience that will see W5’s AMAZE space transformed into the haunted Winterly Manor. Encounters with a range of ghosts, ghouls, phantoms and restless spirits await. Enter if you dare! Admission is free with general admission to W5 although pre-booking is essential.

3. Roe Valley Speciality Market, Limavady, County Londonderry, 2 December. A must for those who love great artisan fresh produce, speciality products and quirky handmade gifts. A great day out with plenty of ideas and gifts for Christmas.


4. Christmas Fair at the Argory, Moy, County Armagh, 2-3 December. This year’s fair promises to be bigger and better than ever with live music, food and crafts stalls all helping to create a festive atmosphere you won’t forget! You can also see this historic National Trust site decorated in the style of Christmas past. Trees will be groaning with garlands, and the table laid for a feast of old.

5. Santa at Montalto House, Ballynahinch, County Down, 2-3 December. Prepare to meet Mr and Mrs Claus in the wonderful surroundings of Montalto House! Wrap up warm as the Head Elf takes you through the Enchanted Christmas Trail, before reaching the big house where the magic really begins! There’ll be Christmas letter writing, gingerbread decorating and reindeer food making. You can even meet Santa in the library and receive a special present. You can also cosy around the Christmas Tree and enjoy a memorable sing-along and story telling moment with Mrs Claus. There’ll also be refreshments for the adults. Check website for booking and availability.

6. Festive Wreath Making at Everglades Hotel, Derry~Londonderry, County Londonderry, 2-3 December. Enjoy a little festive DIY and make your own Christmas wreath to gift to someone special or hang on your own front door. With the help of local florist John Paul, you will be given all the materials you need to create something wonderful. After all that creativity you can enjoy a well-earned afternoon tea, with sandwiches, fabulous cakes, and bakes.

7. Share Village on Ice, Lisnaskea, County Fermanagh, 27 November- throughout December. This indoor synthetic rink, which is wheelchair-friendly is open to all ages and abilities! Situated on the beautiful shores of Upper Lough Erne whether you're a budding skater or a dab hand don’t be afraid to join in the fun! The rink is set under a canopy twinkling lights. Recommended for
those aged 3+ Check website for details.

8. Todds Leap Magical Winter Wonderland, Ballygawley, County Tyrone, throughout December. Here you get the chance to visit the elves in the Post Office, write your letter and board Santa’s off-road sleigh. You can help the elves test the toys in the workshop and meet Mrs Claus in the Christmas cabin. Enjoy some treats before meeting the man in red in his gift laden grotto. Receive a golden coin and pick a gift. It’s sure to be super fun but watch out for the Grinch who might be sneaking about!

9. Victorian Santa Experience @ Whitehead Railway Museum, Whitehead, County Antrim, 2-3 December. Fancy a unique Santa experience? Well, here’s your chance to see Santa and get a ride in a Steam Train! Jump onboard the heritage carriage complete with Victorian style decorations. Our guides will then take you to the magical forest to find Father Christmas. Look out for hidden animals in the trees. You can enjoy a drink and a cookie with the option of mulled wine for the grownups. When you reach the platform, you can see the enormous snow globe and post your letter to Santa in the chimney of one of the steam engines!

10. Winter Wonderland 2023, Enniskillen, County Fermanagh, 1-3 December. Cancer Connect NI in partnership with the National Trust has created a wonderful festive experience at Castle Coole. Begin the adventure by boarding the Polar Express, a special road ‘train’ in the grounds of Enniskillen Model Primary where you will be greeted by Mrs Claus and her elves. Travel to the Castle where you will be invited to step back in time to meet Santa in his grotto. Mrs Claus will be whipping up some treats in her kitchen. Everyone will receive refreshments with stories and games as well as the chance to take pictures on Santa’s giant sleigh.

For more information on what’s on or to plan a short break in Northern Ireland, visit

60 Businesses Unite To Fuel Young Entrepreneurs In Northern Ireland

Over 60 Northern Irish businesses have joined forces in a major show of support for the next generation of entrepreneurs. 

Backing the enterprise education charity Young Enterprise, these companies are a crucial part of the newly launched Business Backers campaign. 

The initiative, responding to the success of previous programmes, is all about giving young people the tools and confidence they need to succeed in business, and it’s catching on fast across the country.

Young Enterprise’s aim is for all young people to have the chance to explore their entrepreneurial abilities whilst simultaneously developing additional skills that will serve them for both work and life.  

Speaking of the initiative Carol Fitzsimons MBE, chief executive of Young Enterprise said: “Business is pushing to further develop the Northern Ireland economy and needs a skilled future workforce. By becoming a Business Backer, these businesses support our mission to develop skills and publicly demonstrate their investment and belief in young people.”

By working in partnership with education and business bodies, Young Enterprise engages with over 90,000 young people every year.

Without the support of Young Enterprise’s Business Backers, this simply would not be able to happen.

The Business Backers campaign involves businesses pledging support to young entrepreneurs on a monthly basis.

Jordan Graham of Sugar Snap is one Young Enterprise Business Backers who has experienced the benefits of joining the scheme. 

He said: “Finding that philanthropic outlet would really suit anyone in the business world. Young Enterprise is a really good option for that because you can directly support young entrepreneurs in what they’re doing”

Jordan also believes that the Business Backer programme doesn’t just advantage the young people it involves. He said: “To teach entrepreneurship and enterprise skills is for the benefit of the whole business community.” 

For smaller businesses interested in becoming a Young Enterprise Backer there are three monthly packages to choose from, with all resulting in investment within the local community. 

Businesses can choose from the YE5, YE10 or YE25 programmes supporting either 5, 10 or 25 future entrepreneurs, depending on how much they are able to pledge each month. 

Larger companies hoping to make a big impact can choose from Big Business Packages. These include the YE Impact programme that allows businesses to support 50 entrepreneurs a month and influences the entrepreneurship programme run by Young Enterprise. It also allows businesses to have involvement in the running and judging of the Young Enterprise Big Market and celebrate young entrepreneurs at the Young Enterprise Awards 2024.

The YE ESG allows your business to support 100 future entrepreneurs each month. The impact of this investment will leave a lasting legacy for both the economy and for Northern Ireland’s young entrepreneurs. 

Rachel McMillan is another Young Enterprise Business Backer. Rachel’s Belfast based company, Clockwise Offices, has been volunteering with Young Enterprise for a number of years. 

She said: “I have to say that the confidence that comes through from the young people, the enthusiasm, it’s just so amazing to see, and the work that Young Enterprise does is so valuable for young people’s futures.”

Rachel also encourages any business thinking about becoming a Business Backer to go ahead and make the decision to do so. 

“It’s so important that companies get behind this campaign, to invest in young people’s futures because they will drive the economy forward in the future as well.”

To become a Young Enterprise Business Backer you can enquire or join at

Northern Ireland Must Forge Ahead with Climate Goals Despite UK Delays

By Ross Moffett, Sales Director, Everun

As the world grapples with the urgency of climate change, Northern Ireland finds itself at a crossroads. With the UK government’s recent decision to push back environmental targets to 2050 and the absence of a sitting government in Northern Ireland, there’s a looming threat that our progress towards sustainable solutions might stall. 

However, as someone deeply entrenched in the renewable energy sector, I believe we must not only maintain our pace but accelerate our efforts to meet the 2030 climate action goals.

The challenge we face in Northern Ireland could be described as “dire”. At Everun we recognise the broader implications of our work, which encompasses everything from the development and management of wind farms and solar energy projects to providing EV charging and smart motor solutions to our clients. This commitment underpins our drive towards a greener, more resilient Northern Ireland.

Going forward towards 2030 we must ensure there is equitable access to renewable energy solutions that transcends the scope of individual sectors and squarely places the onus on collaborative governance. 

The lack of a sitting government since February 2022 has hindered our progress. The introduction of the Northern Ireland Protocol, part of a Brexit agreement designed to prevent a hard border on the island of Ireland, led to the dissolution of The Assembly. This political impasse has significantly impacted our ability to develop and implement policies that support renewable energy and sustainable infrastructure.

Moreover, the recent rollback of key green targets by the UK government under Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, while claiming to over-deliver on emissions reduction, sends mixed signals. While a pragmatic approach is necessary, it should not come at the cost of delaying essential environmental actions. In Northern Ireland, we are already lagging due to political and infrastructural challenges. Any further delays could be catastrophic.

Despite these hurdles, businesses in Northern Ireland are forging ahead. Many are investing in renewable technologies and more, recognising the long-term benefits and the necessity to stay competitive. This proactive stance is crucial. We cannot afford to be lulled into complacency or a false sense of security. The reality is that the cost of inaction is far greater than the expense of investing in sustainable solutions.

At Everun, we are committed to facilitating this transition. We are exploring innovative solutions with our clients to create self-sufficient, sustainable ecosystems. However, these efforts are often impeded by bureaucratic processes and a lack of governmental support.

It’s time for a collaborative effort. We need policies that encourage the development and adoption of renewable energy sources. Incentive schemes should be tailored to support not just domestic users but also the commercial and industrial sectors, which are crucial drivers of our economy. Additionally, there’s a need for an energy decarbonisation scheme that would encourage new generations of solar farms, wind turbines, and large battery storage.

As Northern Ireland stands at this critical juncture, the message is clear: we cannot afford to delay our progress towards the 2030 climate goals. We must act now to ensure a sustainable future, not just for our generation but for those to come. The time for decisive action and unwavering commitment is now.

“Get Freezin’ For A Reason” in Portrush this December in support of Special Olympics 

Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council is delighted to partner with both PSNI and the Policing and Community Safety Partnership for this year’s ‘Polar Plunge’ in support of Special Olympics.

The annual event, being held in Portrush, will help raise much needed funds which will help sports, leadership, and health programmes to be delivered to Special Olympics Ireland athletes in clubs across Northern Ireland.


Special Olympics Ireland in collaboration with The Law Enforcement Torch Run officially launched the 21st Annual Polar Plunge, proudly supported by Gala Retail and this exciting fundraising campaign will see people from across the island “take the plunge” to support Special Olympics Ireland’s athletes and programmes.

Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens, Councillor Steven Callaghan said: “As event partners alongside the PSNI and the Policing and Community Safety Partnership, Council is delighted to support this year’s Polar Plunge event and welcome it to Portrush.

“This annual event, now in its 21st year, provides valuable support for Special Olympics Ireland athletes, many of whom are from the Borough.

“I’d encourage you to come along on the day to show your support all those participating, good luck to everyone who takes the plunge this December to help raise valuable funding for these key sporting programmes.”

Now in its 21st year, Polar Plunge events will take place in five locations across the island throughout December 2023.

In Northern Ireland, people can take the icy dip at Portrush, Co. Antrim on Sunday December 3rd. Participants can also complete their own Polar Plunge virtually from their own locations.

Special Olympics Ireland is delighted that its long-term charity partner, Gala Retail, have once again kindly sponsored this year’s Polar Plunge events, which are organised in collaboration with The Law Enforcement Torch Run.
For more information or to sign-up for a daring dip this December, visit

Shaun Cassidy, Ulster Regional Director, Special Olympics Ireland said: 

“We are delighted to launch the 21st Polar Plunge in support of our athletes, clubs and programmes. The challenge of getting ‘Freezin’ for a Reason’ is all the more apt this year as we prepare for the Ireland Winter Games in 2024.

“For all of us involved in Special Olympics, the grassroots and everyday activities at local club level are the most important. It is so important that people with an intellectual disability have an outlet through sport, an outlet to meet friends, train hard and compete, with support from the local community and club volunteers. We would be delighted if you would consider getting ‘Freezin’ for a Reason’ in Portrush on the 3rd December for Special Olympics Ireland and help us raise the necessary funds that will help support athletes in the local area and beyond.”

CEO of Gala Retail, Gary Desmond said: 

“We are so proud to partner with Special Olympics Ireland and support The Polar Plunge for the third year in a row.

“I was lucky enough to travel to the Special Olympics World Games this year and see first-hand how inspiring these athletes are and how much it means to their families. All their great achievements start in their local community clubs. We’re asking for as many people as possible to get involved in their local Polar Plunge and support Special Olympics clubs.”


Christmas really is the most wonderful time of the year at Killyhevlin Lakeside Hotel with a fabulous selection of short breaks and dining experiences for family and friends to ‘Make Memories By The Lakes’ and celebrate the festive season together.

Shop ‘til you drop with a Lakeside Christmas Shopping Break From £85pps which includes a £25 Experience Enniskillen Gift Card, redeemable in over 110 businesses throughout Enniskillen and a luxurious overnight stay, cocktail in the Lakeside Grill, breakfast the following morning and use of the Killyhevlin Health Club.

Add some extra sparkle with the Merry and Bright Christmas Fireworks Evening on Friday 1st and Friday 8th December. Enjoy a festive 4 course dinner, a visit from Santa with a gift and a dazzling fireworks display overlooking Lough Erne followed by a disco. Priced at £32.50 for adults and £19.50 for children.

The Santa Sunday Family Lunch is the perfect pre-Christmas get together with family and friends with a delicious 5 course carvery lunch, a special visit from Santa with gifts for all the children and a kids disco with DJ Bob. Running Sunday 3rd, 10th and 17th December and priced £29.50 for adults and £19.50 for children.

Enjoy Festive Afternoon Tea with a seasonal twist and indulge in a selection of dainty sandwiches, warm fluffy scones, traditional cake, choice of homemade desserts and chef’s selection of pastries. Served Friday, Saturday and  Sunday from 1pm – 4pm – £32.50pp.

To book a festive break at Killyhevlin Lakeside Hotel visit or call +44 (0)28 6632 3481 for further information.

The Market Place Spring Season is Jam-Packed with Music and Comedy

The brand new Spring ’24 season of events has just been launched at The Market Place Theatre, so if you’re searching for the perfect Christmas gift for that special someone, then look no further! Treat them to a night of great entertainment and make some memories at The Market Place Theatre!

Comedy fans will be delighted to hear that Neil Delamere will kick off 2024 at The Market Place with his brand new stand up show ‘Neil by Mouth’. Followed throughout the season by a whole host of other hilarious Irish comedians; Jake O’Kane, Jason Byrne, Vittorio Angelone, Conal Gallen, Paddy Raff, Jarlath Regan and Diona Doherty.

If live music is more up your street, there is plenty to choose from this season with performances from The High Kings, The Fureys, Cara Dillon, Ronnie Greer, The Shamrock Tenors and many more.

For country fans there is plenty to look forward to, The Stars of Country Show will take the stage in January, followed throughout the season by local legends such as Patrick Feeny, Philopmena Begley and Ray Lynam, Mike Denver and Brendan Quinn; who will be celebrating 60 years in the music business!

There will also be some incredible tribute acts on stage at The Market Place this season. Come and sing along to some of the greatest hits by icons such as Queen, Adele, Bruce Springsteen, Fleetwood Mac and The Eagles, Ed Sheeran and Pink Floyd.

For those who prefer a bit of drama in their lives, the Spring season will not disappoint. The Baric Theatre will present Oscar Wilde’s classic, ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ and Jez Butterworth’s gripping take of betrayal and redemption, ‘The Ferryman’. Bruiser Theatre Company will take the stage with the fast paced and highly entertaining ‘Teechers’ and Amadan Ensemble will bring everyone’s favourite puppet maker ‘Geppetto’ to life.

We also offer a wide range of creative workshops which would make a perfect gift for anyone with an artistic flair – from cake decorating and jewellery making, to wood turning and leather work, it’s all happening at The Market Place! You will need to be quick, because these are sure to be as popular as ever, and tickets won’t hang around for long.

Details of all events can be found online at, and tickets can be booked by contacting the Box Office on 03300 561 025.

And to keep up-to-date with the latest news at the Market Place Theatre, you can follow us on Facebook ( and Twitter ( where you will find all the latest information, special offers and video previews.

Translink bus and train Nightmovers back for festive season

Translink has unwrapped details of its popular late-night bus and train Christmas Nightmover services operating on Friday and Saturday nights from 24th November.

With the party season fast approaching, Translink has partnered with a number of organisations including the Belfast Improvement Districts, Hospitality Ulster, Visit Belfast and local taxi companies fonaCAB and Valuecabs to encourage revellers to travel into the city for their Christmas catch ups with the assurance they can get home safely.

Back Row (L-R) Laurence Tingson, Linen Quarter Bid, Damien Corr Cathedral Quarter Bid, Joel Neill Hospitality Ulster, Callum Craig, Belfast One Bid, Boyd Sleator, Free the Night, Damian Bannon Area Manager-Translink. Front Row (L-R) Holly Sleator, Free the Night, Christopher McCausland, Value Cab, Clare Guinness (CEO) Belfast Chamber, Chris Conway CEO Translink, Anne McMullen, Visit Belfast, William McCausland fona CAB.

Late-night Belfast Metro services will start first on Friday 24th November and will be followed by Goldliner/Urby and rail services from Friday, 1st December offering a range of departures to towns and cities across Northern Ireland.

Special Nightmover fares will be applied for all passengers starting from £6 for an adult Metro single ticket.  These can be purchased from the driver, conductor or station staff on the day of travel.

Commenting on the return of the late-night timetable, Translink Group Chief Executive, Chris Conway said: 

“We are pleased to offer these additional popular festive services and welcome the vital support from our partners this year. The night-time economy plays an essential role in boosting tourism, jobs and in keeping people better connected and we want to play our part in helping more people enjoy the fantastic hospitality on offer.

“People can come into the city and enjoy all the Christmas craic and festivities knowing they have a safe and reliable way home.

“We know there has been strong public interest in late night bus and rail services and we are expecting them to be busy as more people make the most of the festive season. We look forward to working with our partners to create a more connected, sustainable, and liveable city for all,” Chris concluded.

Commenting on the return of Nightmovers …

Clare Guinness from the Belfast Chamber of Commerce spoke about Nightmovers, “This is a welcome initiative from Translink that will support Belfast’s outstanding night-time economy and will allow people to extend their enjoyment of the Christmas festivities knowing they have a safe and reliable route home.”

William McCausland, fonaCAB Managing Director commented, “We’re delighted to partner with Translink, and to support the Nightmover service this festive season. With so many more people going out in the night-time economy at this time of year, having more options for travel can only add to the numbers enjoying what our great hospitality has to offer. The “on demand” service which taxis offer complements the regular scheduled timetable that Translink provides, and combined gives passengers a wider choice for travel in what is sure to be a busy time for all.”

Christopher McCausland from Valuecabs said, “We love the festive period and seeing people out enjoying themselves. With the use of Nightmovers encouraging people to come to the city we can help those people get around Belfast to continue the fun. We can also take people the last mile home and bring people to their front doors after using Nightmovers services.”

Anne McMullan from Visit Belfast said, “A thriving, exciting destination packed with great hospitality, a wide and unrivalled retail offer and outstanding world class attractions, we want to everyone to make it a Belfast Christmas this year and we’re delighted that Nightmovers delivers yet another great reason to visit, to enjoy all the exciting festivities on offer and to get home safe.”

Chris McCracken, Managing Director of Linen Quarter Bid said, “We are delighted to support Nightmovers again after the success of it last year. Our aim is to help local businesses especially around the festive period and get people to the Linen Quarter area. We encourage our businesses and customers to promote and use the service so that we can build the case for a more permanent service.”

Damien Corr, Manager of Cathedral Quarter Bid said, “Cathedral Quarter BID are delighted to support the return of Translink’s ‘Nightmovers’ initiative. The service enables people from right across the City and indeed further afield to enjoy the famous hospitality of the Cathedral Quarter and the wider City. We are encouraging businesses to promote the service to their customers as the smart way to do Christmas this season!”

Alan Crowe, CEO of Belfast One said, “Belfast is such a vibrant city with so much to offer so with Nightmovers we can welcome more people to come and see it for themselves. Especially during this busy Christmas season, the option for guests to stay longer and enjoy shopping and socialising into the evening should be highly popular.”

Joel Neill from Hospitality Ulster said, “It will undoubtedly encourage people to visit the cities where they can eat, drink, and enjoy our world class hospitality offering for longer, without the time constraint of returning home earlier than planned. It’s great to see Nightmovers back before Christmas, but to increase traffic year-round, not just during the holidays, these services must receive financial support and be made permanent.”

Michael Stewart from Purple Flag Committee said, “Hospitality and retail businesses across the cities will really benefit from the Nightmovers. With an increase in footfall around Northern Ireland these businesses can have a successful night-time economy at Christmas.”

Boyd Sleater and Holly Lester, from Free the Night, added, “Free the Night’s aim is to enrich nightlife in Northern Ireland and ensure it is safe and accessible for all. We are pleased to hear that Nightmovers is returning this Christmas and hope to see even later services in the future which extend throughout the year and reflect night-time opening hours of our night-time economy.”

Councillor Clíodhna Nic Bhranair, Chair of City Growth and Regeneration Committee at Belfast City Council said, “This is a really welcome initiative from Translink as we enter the festive period and actively encourage more people to come and enjoy the Christmas offering in Belfast. The return of late-night services will not only ensure that our nighttime economy thrives, but more importantly the service will allow both residents and visitors to the city to extend their enjoyment, knowing they have a safe and reliable route home.”

This announcement follows the recent introduction of additional later evening Foyle Metro services already introduced on Friday and Saturday nights in Derry~Londonderry with departures from Foyle Street Bus Station to most parts of the city between 10.30pm and 11pm.

Services will run every Friday and Saturday until Friday 22 December. Full details of Translink’s festive travel package and Christmas timetable arrangements are now available at, social media channels and via our contact centre.