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23/09/2021

Citywide community festival like Belfast’s highly popular Féile an Phobail proposed for Derry

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Derry’s council have been called on to look at the possibility of staging a citywide community festival similar to that of the Féile an Phobail in West Belfast. The calls came in the wake of the Gasyard Feile, which saw a wide range of events culminate in a huge fire festival and open-air concert at the Lecky Road site on Wednesday night. There have been bow calls for the city to build on the success of the event, and now look at the establishment of a larger scale event. The call came from Foyle Sinn Fein MLA Karen Mullan, who said there is no reason why a festival similar in format to the Féile an Phobail ‘cannot be repeated locally’. “I want to commend all the fantastic work that has taken place in Derry over recent days and weeks. The sheer number of youth intervention programmes, community events, local festivals and fun days has been quite incredible and all those involved deserve our thanks and recognition,” she said. “There is clearly a potential to build on that and I am calling on the statutory agencies, including the local council to look at what can be done to assist those working within communities to realise that potential. “We have wonderful events in this city like the Maritime and Halloween festivals, but the creation of a Derry-wide community event would really add value to the cultural calendar that we have on offer.” She continued: “The success of Féile and Phobail in Belfast shows what can be achieved. It is now the biggest community festival in Europe and there is no reason why we cannot do something similar in Derry.” Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the Gasyard Feile said: “We look forward to celebrating everything that is great about the Bogside, Brandywell, Fountain, Bishop Street and Creggan together in August 2019.”

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