Public to join Clipper homecoming party

Niall Boyle who has gained his Masters Ticket with Nicolle Walters from Kickstart to Work. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 30.5.12

Niall Boyle who has gained his Masters Ticket with Nicolle Walters from Kickstart to Work. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 30.5.12

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People from all over the north west are being urged to join the party for the Clipper Homecoming Festival.

Final preparations are almost complete for the festival, which will take place on the banks of the Foyle from June 29 until July 8 and there’s an open invitation for the public to get involved in the People’s Platform.

The People’s Platform at the Clipper Round the World Yacht Festival aims to offer organisations and individuals a chance to get involved and showcase the arts, culture and entertainment that is rooted in the local community.

A spokesperson for Derry City Council council said: “So whether you are a street dance crew, a budding musician or a side-cracking comic, we want to hear from you. We are now considering all suggestions from community and arts groups, as well as individuals who are interested in performing, there are a limited number of spaces, so do get in touch.”

Mayor Alderman Maurice Devenney said: “This is a great chance for local talent to perform and participate in what will be a huge event, and to showcase the very best of the city to people from around the world.”

For more information about the People’s Platform or to propose an idea, please contact Katie@milestoneinventive.com

For more information about the event please visit Derry City Council’s website: www.derrycity.gov.uk/Clipper/Welcome

The festival is billed as a jam-packed programme on and off the water, with activities to suit all tastes.

It is anticipated that the event will focus the eyes of an international audience on Derry and give the city an opportunity to tell the world its unique story. Zapcat powerboats will be just one of the spectacles on the Foyle during the ten day festival to welcome the Derry~Londonderry yacht home after its year long voyage.

Meanwhile, Niall Boyle (23) from Altnagelvin - who won a Derry City Council bursary award to take part in the first leg of the round the world race on the Derry clipper - recently gained his yacht masters.

Having gained key skills during training for the Clipper race and the crossing from Southampton to Rio de Janeiro, Niall gained employment with the local Port through the ‘Kickstart to Work Programme’ with Derry City Council.

Assistant Harbour Master at the Port and Harbour Commissioners, Paul Bryson said: “Following Niall’s return from his Clipper adventure, we ascertained he now had sufficient sea time to enable him to undergo his Yacht Masters. He has worked very hard at this, fitting in study time after his days work, so we are all very impressed that he has gained this well deserved qualification.’

Niall was one of eight people on Derry City Council’s Kickstart to Work programme who was selected to take part in a leg of the Clipper Round the World Race.