TV presenter and producer Joe Mahon has joined a host of dignitaries for the launch of the Heritage Angel Awards NI in Derry city centre.
Mr Mahon, who presents the hit series Lesser Spotted Ulster, joined Mayor of Derry & Strabane Maolíosa McHugh and representatives from Ulster Architecural Heritage (UAH) and Derry City & Strabane District Council at the launch, which was held at the historic St Augustine’s Church.
The awards scheme is funded by the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation and the local Council, and is administered by UAH.
The Awards seek to celebrate the efforts of people who go to extraordinary lengths to protect, save and share their local heritage. They also recognise those who champion heritage by sharing and practising forgotten craft skills, and recognise the efforts of young people to learn about heritage.
At the local launch, Joe Mahon said that he had found the 2017 Awards engaging, interesting and inspiring, and emphasised the importance of supporting the unsung heroes of heritage.
The Awards have been running successfully in England and Scotland for a number of years, with Nothern Ireland coming on board last year and Wales in 2018.
This year’s five categories include Best Rescue of an Historic Building or Place for projects under £5m and Best Major Regeneration of an historic building or place.
Nominations and applications are now open and will close on Friday, June 1.
A team of heritage experts will down shortlists for each category and a panel of judges will choose the eventual winners who will be announced at the Heritage Angels Awards NI ceremony on Tuesday November 6 at the Guildhall in Derry.
The award winner for each category will then move forward to represent Northern Ireland for the chance to be crowned overall Heritage Angel at a high profile ceremony in late November in London.
Nicola McVeigh, Chief Executive, UAHS said: “The success of the 2017 Awards demonstrated the high level of activity and interest in local heritage and we hope by highlighting these achievements many more people will become involved in heritage projects.”
For details on how to apply or nominate someone else for an award please visit www.heritageangelawards-ni.org.uk/
Keep up to date with the latest from the Heritage Angel Awards NI on Twitter and Facebook at @ulsterahs