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For the second year Newry City of Merchants is once again holding its highly anticipated walking tour culminating in a celebratory banquet at Bagenal’s Castle.

Focusing this year on Newry’s railway heritage, the tour will start at 2.30pm from the Museum, and will visit locations once occupied by stations, bridges and platforms. Participants will find out how the railway and port provided the foundation for Newry’s development as a mercantile centre on Carlingford Lough.

Starting at 5pm the banquet will be a sumptuous and enjoyable end to the walking tour. The menu consists of a cold meat buffet including a dressed salmon, ham and a choice of dessert, plus a glass of mulled wine.

The City of Merchants Banquet is not to be missed.
The City of Merchants Banquet is not to be missed.

Entertainment will be provided by Living History re-enactors who will perform songs and poetry inspired by the 1885 Golden Wedding celebrations of Newry MP and railway investor, Peter Quinn.

Peter Quinn was a merchant in Newry and served as a Justice of the Peace in the counties of Armagh and Down. He also served on the committee which issued the prospectus for the Newry, Armagh and Enniskillen Railway in the autumn of 1844 (the company was formed in 1845) and was on the Board of the Newry Navigation Company.

Speaking on Newry & Mourne Museum’s activities, Deputy Chairperson Oksana McMahon said: “It is great to see the return of the 2018 City of Merchants celebrations. The walking tour has proved extremely popular and it is a wonderful insight into the heritage and history of Newry as a Merchant town. By celebrating Peter Quinn through the banquet, it is a great way to acknowledge those that have helped build the trading legacy we are proud of.”

Numbers are limited and due to its high demand, we urge people to book tickets soon. Tickets are £10 and available from Newry Visitor Centre, Bagenal’s Castle Tel. 028 3031 3170

The City of Merchants Festival will take place from Friday 2nd to Sunday 4th November and will see a host of activities take place to celebrate the area’s maritime and trading heritage. Activities on Friday alongside the Walking Tour & Banquet at Bagenal’s Castle include a Twilight Market from 5pm to 10pm in Newry Variety Market Hill Street; free children’s art and craft workshops at the market; a sensational parade to the Fathom Line at 7.15pm; ending with a magnificent firework display from 8pm.

On Saturday you can enjoy the Tall Ships from 12noon to 4pm; a theatrical Merchant Quest through the streets of Newry created by theatre company Big Telly; interactive Horse and Trap tours; a theatrical guided tour of Bagenal’s Castle; plus, a comical look at trade through the years taking place in both The Buttercrane and The Quays Shopping Centres.  This year will also see the inaugural Scenic Carlingford Ferry Loop Sportive in which hundreds of keen cyclists will take on a 62km route around the shores of Carlingford Lough. More details on this event can be found at www.loopsportive.com

On Sunday in partnership with Kx and Newry Business Improvement District (BID), Aston Martin Red Bull Racing will be bringing one of its famous Formula 1 cars to Marcus Square in Newry. Set to take up its podium position outside the newly opened First Derivatives building, the car will be on display between 2pm and 4pm.

For more information on the overall City of Merchants Festival programme and for details on how to book tickets for the events please visit: www.heaveninaheartbeat.com/giant-adventures

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