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Derry City & Strabane

Mayor Encourages Local Women to Get Involved in She Shed Programme

Alderman Graham Warke, Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council pictured with staff and funders during his visit to the 4R’s-New2You She Shed at Pennyburn. Photo Credit: Martin McKeown.

Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Alderman Graham Warke, visited the New2You Centre in Pennyburn this week to launch the She Shed Programme, which provides construction courses for local women.

In partnership with the Housing Executive and funded by their Social Enterprise Strategy, She Shed will include six-week courses in upcycling, joinery, and household electrical maintenance.

The innovative female empowerment programme also involves a link up with local schools, highlighting the construction sector to females as one with future employment opportunities. Some local construction and IT firms will also provide those taking part with information on careers in their respective sectors.

Mayor Warke said that the programm​e is an excellent opportunity for local women to take that first step in learning more about careers in which females would not typically be strongly represented.

“I’m really impressed with the She Shed initiative. It’s a great chance for females who may be unsure about breaking into trades such as construction to learn more about the skills involved and what jobs are on offer.

“Sometimes making that first step can be the hardest one, but this programme empowers women and massively builds their confidence and their skills base. They can learn alongside like-minded, driven people.

“I’d strongly encourage anyone who sees the courses available and thinks it might be for them to get in touch and get yourself signed up.”

Eddie Doherty, Area Manager of The Housing Executive, said: “The She Shed engages females from Housing Executive communities in creative community upcycling activities and other useful classes.  This helps build confidence and connection among women who may otherwise never meet or who may not have considered personal development.  For this reason, the Housing Executive is delighted to support this community programme under its Social Enterprise Plus Programme.”

The programme will be overseen by Nuala Griffiths, General Manager of New2You. Nuala has a background in the construction sector and explained that the programme is a way to support and encourage women from all backgrounds and show them there are training and education opportunities open to them.

“With courses in upcycling, joinery and household electrical maintenance we feel there is a great range there that will interest a lot of local women who have perhaps often thought about pursuing a career in these areas.

“At the She Shed programme we have a safe environment where all of our participants can learn more about the skills involved and about the jobs and opportunities that could be available to them down the line.”

To sign up, email  or telephone 02871360453. Courses cost just £30 for 6 weeks.

Derry City & Strabane

Don’t Miss a Thing with New Derry Halloween App

With the countdown officially on ahead of another spooky and spectacular Halloween, the public are being encouraged to download the free Derry Halloween app to keep up to date on all the ghostly activities.

Derry City and Strabane District Council have been working closely with partner agencies to put together an exciting programme that will span across Derry, Strabane and Donegal.

Whether you want to find out more on the Spirit Worlds, the fireworks shows, the Strabane Hay Trail, Little Horrors, or anything else taking place – the Derry Halloween section of the Whats On Derry Strabane app is a one-stop-stop for everything you need to know.

Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Alderman Graham Warke, encouraged everyone to download the app to make sure you don’t miss out on the haunted happenings.

“I’m delighted that we have the Derry Halloween app this year which will be a fantastic tool for everyone planning to be part of the Halloween activities.

“The app will be the perfect place to stay updated on everything that will be taking place across the city, district, and Donegal.

“Everything has been planned with public health and safety in mind so please follow the advice and ensure you spread your visits out across the whole Halloween weekend, wrap up warm and keep your distance from others.

He continued: “I know I am really looking forward to this year’s programme and to having Halloween back in our city and district, so get the Derry Halloween app downloaded and start your planning now!”

Derry Halloween is organised by Derry City and Strabane District Council with support from Tourism Northern Ireland, the Executive Office, Translink, Donegal County Council and the North West Development Fund.

To download the app, visit your Google Play or i0S app store and search for ‘What’s On Derry Strabane’

You can find out more about the full programme on

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Derry City & Strabane

The Lost World to Take Over Strabane this Halloween

There will be lots of strange and spooky sights in Strabane town centre on Halloween weekend as The Lost World takes over.

On Friday 29th and Saturday 30th October from 1pm to 5pm you better keep your eyes peeled as you may discover some strange unwanted characters lurking that have got lost on their way to the Awakening in Derry and have come through the wrong portal, landing in Strabane. There will be an interactive animation trail, starting at the Alley Theatre, and if you​ follow along you may meet some interesting individuals along the way.

Look out for the ‘Wayward Witch’ who can tell you all about the characters lost in Strabane and how to gather them up before it’s too late.

There are six characters to find including ‘The White Lady of the Bann’ who has a special riddle to solve before she casts her spell on the town.

See if you can spot the fastest ghost ever – ‘The Tullymoan Ghost’ – and help him evade the grasp of his arch enemy ‘The Soul Catcher’.

Outside McColgan’s you might see Mrs Lovett trying to sell her famous pies, made from people! Shifty barber Sweeney Todd is helping her look for her next victim, but if you can solve the riddle hidden in their song/monologue, then they will soon be sent back to the Awakening in Derry.

And don’t forget to keep an eye out for Half Hung Mc Naughton outside Harley’s. Listen to his story and don’t forget to catch his riddle at the end.

Along the way you’ll also spot some amazing dinosaurs including ‘Gorm’ the 25-foot-long Triceratops, ‘Jay’ the 15-year-old T-Rex, ‘Echo’ – the youngest of the Velociraptors, ‘Baby Blue’ who is the eldest of the ‘Raptors and daughter of a very famous movie star named Blue, ‘Sastá’ the gentle and caring herbivore, and the feisty ‘Baby Roxy’ – stay away as he does bite! There will also be a special dino mobile museum packed with real skulls, teeth, claws and much more. 

If that wasn’t enough, make sure you’re in Abercorn Square on Saturday 30th October at 1.30pm to catch the frighteningly fantastic SPARK LED Drummers. Back by popular demand, this is street theatre at its finest with a magical live music movement and spectacular lighting performance.

There will also be live music, a food quarter, arts and crafts, and street performers and live shows, so don’t miss out!

Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Alderman Graham Warke, encouraged everyone to pay a visit on Halloween weekend.

“It will be spooky Strabane next weekend as the town centre is overtaken by The Lost World. You just don’t know what ghastly and ghoulish sights you might see!

“It’s also fantastic to have SPARK back. It’s a very special show and certainly one that’s not to be missed.

“With the dinosaurs also making their way through the town, there’s guaranteed to be a fantastic Halloween atmosphere, so I’d really encourage all families to get themselves into Strabane to enjoy the vast Halloween activities that we have planned.”

You can find out more about the full programme on

Derry Halloween is organised by Derry City and Strabane District Council with support from Tourism Northern Ireland, the Executive Office, Translink, Donegal County Council and the North West Development Fund.

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