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A rich and diverse range of talent throughout the South East region of Northern Ireland is being featured in a new digital app, allowing creative industries to develop their business by connecting them with the tourist market.

The ‘NI Creative Trails’ app, built through the Creative Momentum project in partnership with app design and interpretation agency Oli, is now available for free download. It showcases County Down and County Armagh’s most talented creative businesses offering ‘see and do’ experiences.

Pictured at the launch of the NI Creative Trails app are  Councillor Colin McCusker, Vice Chair of the Economic Development & Regeneration Committee of Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon Borough Council and James Adair, The Journey Man Saddler, who specialises in bespoke leatherwork and features on the new creative trail
Pictured at the launch of the NI Creative Trails app are Councillor Colin McCusker, Vice Chair of the Economic Development & Regeneration Committee of Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon Borough Council and James Adair, The Journey Man Saddler, who specialises in bespoke leatherwork and features on the new creative trail.

With two separate trails available to follow, anyone downloading the app will be able to navigate their way around a variety of independent creative businesses. The featured businesses share an impressive variety of traditional skills, from potters to leathermakers, blacksmiths to jewellery designers and glass blowers to weavers.

James Adair, specialist leathermaker and owner of Newry-based business The Journey Man Saddler, is amongst the businesses featured in the trail and showcased his expertise at the launch of the App.

Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council is the lead council behind the Creative Momentum Project, representing the South East Economic Development (SEED) region, which also includes Ards and North Down Borough Council and Newry, Mourne and Down District Council. The EU Northern Periphery and Arctic Regions Programme (NPA) and SEED fund the Northern Ireland partner on the €2m transnational project ‘Creative Momentum’ supporting the development of the creative industries sector across Europe’s Northern Edge.

Councillor Colin McCusker, Vice Chair of the Economic Development & Regeneration Committee of Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon Borough Council, said "This new app shines a spotlight on the wealth of creative talent in County Down and County Armagh. Anyone taking a Creative Trail through this app will be able to enjoy a unique experience – and even people familiar with the area will unearth some of our hidden creative gems.

"Celebrating local creative businesses is crucial to support our local economy, harbour and cultivate a healthy culture of innovation, and keep the exceptional skills of people within our communities alive. We have world-class talent on our doorstep and it is fantastic to have this packaged within an easy to use tourist trail,” Councillor Colin McCusker said.

Businesses featuring in the Creative Trails app are also listed on www.mycreativeedge.eu,  a platform that showcases the work of businesses in the creative industries in Mid-Sweden, North East Iceland, Northern Finland, South East of Northern Ireland and the West of Ireland as well as further digital marketing to potential creative industries clients in US, UK, French and German cities.

The Creative Momentum Creative Trails app is available for download for IOS and Android devices.

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