Monthly Archives: March 2019

Family-Friendly ‘Trad And Folk Session’ At the Alley Theatre,Strabane

25 March 2019

The Strabane Branch of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann will be holding its monthly ‘Family Trad and Folk Session’ in the Café Area of the Alley Theatre between 2pm and 4pm on Saturday 30th March. This session is open to all families in the district and is a great chance for children and young people to get to play the tunes they are currently learning in a welcoming, public session. Learners are particularly welcome and will get lots of support when trying out their new tunes.

The inaugural Family Session in January was a huge success, and was followed up by two further family and youth sessions in the Alley, including one as part of the St Patrick’s Day celebrations in the town. While music will provide the backbone of the session, the Comhaltas is also looking to encourage all aspects of the Irish cultural tradition. So, if you have a dance, a poem, a song, a story, or a short 5 minute drama sketch (in either English or Irish) you’ll also be very welcome to take part in the Seisiún.

Strabane Comhaltas lessons have now commenced on Wednesday evenings in Gaelscoil Uí Dhochartaigh for children, young people and adults interested in the following: Traditional Singing (Youth) 6.30pm – 7pm; Traditional Singing (Adult) 7pm-7.45pm; Basic B/C Button Accordion (Youth) 7pm – 7.45pm; Basic B/C Button Accordion (Adult) 7.45pm – 8.30pm; Fiddle Improvers (Youth) 7pm – 7.45. The Comhaltas hopes to add to this range of classes in the time ahead.

If you are interested in further information please do not hesitate to contact

Golfers Tee Up For Walled City of Derry & Strabane Pro Am Tournament

25 March 2019

Professional and amateur golfers are teeing up for the Walled City of Derry & Strabane Pro Am Tournament, which will take place on 24th and 25th August 2019. As one of the largest events in this year’s PGA calendar, the tournament hosts 52 teams and a total of 208 golfers.

Sponsored by Bishop’s Gate Hotel and Frylite and supported by Derry City and Strabane District Council, the tournament has attracted Ireland’s top professionals, including Irish PGA Order of Merit Winner Simon Thornton and defending Champion Michael McGeady.

Discussing the Walled City & Strabane Pro Am Golf Tournament, Ciaran O’Neill of Bishop’s Gate Hotel, one of the tournament joint sponsors, said:

“Now in its third year this tournament promotes the extremely strong offering that the North West region provides in terms of golf tourism. It brings together a broad range of golfers and golf enthusiasts and it is a top attraction in this summer’s sporting calendar.  We’re thrilled to be involved and we’re looking forward to showcasing what the North West has to offer.”

Joint sponsor, Eamon McCay, Managing Director of Frylite, added:

“The fact that Strabane Golf Club will feature along with City of Derry will make this year’s tournament a truly North West event. The calibre of local and international talent that is signing up to take part will undoubtedly attract a significant number of spectators and this in turn will benefit the wider economy.  We’re delighted to be sponsoring such a positive event as 1979 was the last time that a Pro Am event was held at Strabane Golf Club.”

Councillor John Boyle, Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, welcomed the tournament:

“As a Council we’re keen to continue to attract premium sporting events such as the Walled City of Derry & Strabane Pro Am Tournament as this is a vital part of growing our Tourism offering. I am delighted that City of Derry Golf Club and Strabane Golf Club are coming together to host the event and that a larger number of competitors can be facilitated. This approach also reinforces the City and District’s reputation as a central hub for golfers, providing a challenging test of golf for both the Irish PGA Professionals and local amateurs alike.”

Ciaran O’Neill added: “In addition to the joint sponsors, Bishop’s Gate Hotel and Frylite, I would like to acknowledge and thank Visit Derry, Total Golf, Nuprint, Citroën and JC Halliday & Sons, who have been instrumental in attracting Irish PGA professionals back to the City. The North West region is fast becoming a golfing hub with Royal Portrush set to host the 148th Open this summer”.

Michael McCumiskey, secretary of the PGA in Ireland, explained the format of the tournament:

“Top Irish PGA Professionals from all over Ireland will be competing for the title and guaranteed prize pot of 15,000 euros. Teams of three amateurs will also compete alongside the professionals for the coveted team prize.

“On the Friday a junior event will take place, kindly supported by Irish PGA professionals. As part of our wider community outreach programme we will continue to work with budding young golfers delivering free coaching clinics hosted by top Irish PGA professionals.  Whether you’re brand new to golf or want to perfect your technique, your game will benefit from professional advice”.

For further information and to register for the Junior Golf event, please contact City of Derry Golf Club on 028 7131 1496.

Draft Green Infrastructure Plan Consultation Launched At The Green Infrastructure & Climate Change Conference: Derry-Strabane

13 March 2019

Derry City & Strabane District Council and its Green Infrastructure (GI) Partners this week formally announced details of an ambitious and forward thinking Green Infrastructure Plan 2019 – 2032 for the City and District.

The Plan and consultation was launched by the Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Councillor John Boyle, at the Green Infrastructure and Climate Change Conference that took place yesterday at the Guildhall.

Welcoming the plan and encouraging people to take part in the consultation, Mayor Boyle said the views of the public were central to bringing forward the key objectives and aspirations set out in the plan.

He said that the GI Plan is linked to the Local Development Plan and the Strategic Growth Plan and will deliver benefits across four key themes to include people and place; economic prosperity; biodiversity; and climate change.

“This is a hugely significant document that has the potential to make real and lasting changes to our local environment. We really want to engage with the public and get everyone to have their say on the plan and get involved in bringing about real and positive change for our future,” he commented.

GI is an interconnected network of multi-functional green and blue spaces, which provide multiple environmental, economic and social benefits. It is mostly comprised of green spaces that are vegetated (woodlands, public parks and allotments) and blue spaces that are our waterways (rivers, canals, reservoirs and lakes).

Christine Doherty, Council’s Lead Officer for Green Infrastructure, speaking at the launch explained: “The GI Plan is a radical new approach that requires a change to the way we think about and value our green and blue spaces. It highlights that these areas provide a range of benefits including providing ecosystem services – essential benefits that people obtain from the environment – helping mitigate the impact of climate change, improving public parks, play areas, food-growing opportunities and the development of greenways.”

She added that linked to the Strategic Growth Plan there are three cross cutting themes within the GI Plan, which will focus on developing the health and well-being benefits of GI for people and our environment; raising awareness, understanding and appreciation of GI; and calculating the natural capital benefits of ecosystem services for local people.

The consultation events are scheduled to take place on Wednesday 20th March at the Guildhall and Thursday 21st March at the Alley Theatre in Strabane from 13:00 to 20:00.

Further information is available at where you can view and provide feedback on the GI Plan.