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Newry, Mourne and Down District Council and South Armagh Lace Collective have received funding through the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht’s Co-operation with Northern Ireland Funding Scheme, to partner with the Borris Lace group in Carlow.

This partnership will create links between the two areas through the creation of several online collaborative art and lace projects, binding the passion which both areas have for their unique lace making. The projects will use innovative methods to celebrate, share and enhance the cultural heritage and artistic value of the lace techniques.

Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Councillor Laura Devlin said, “The partnership members share a common aim to collaborate with local communities to restore their historical lace craft, ensuring that they remain part of their local and national heritage. These distinctive styles of lace making – Borris Lace and Carrickmacross Lace - have techniques unique to each area which are rooted in history and cultural heritage. 

“The cultural value of the lace making in both areas is confirmed by its longevity, with Borris Lace introduced to the Carlow area over 174 years ago and Carrickmacross Lace celebrating 200 years in the area of south Armagh.”

Chairperson, Cllr Laura Devlin continued, “The two groups are hard at work creating their collaborative creation pieces, which will be displayed in the local area in the coming months. The groups are also working to create film and audio stories around the making of the lace and the social history, which will be shared on the South Armagh Collective website and Borris Lace Facebook page when finished. I am excited to view the finished products, which I’m sure will be an incredible feat of workmanship and my thanks goes to the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht for funding these culturally important projects.”

The lace tradition in each area is a product that evolved along with the area’s history, with a significant role in its social heritage and economic growth. These influences are recorded through the rich compositions of works of art, which showcases a deep cultural tradition as seen in the that Bind Us film by the South Armagh Lace Collective. To view some fine examples, Borris House in County Carlow holds one of the largest collection of original Irish lace in its place of origin. 

To find out more or to get involved, visit SOUTHARMAGHLACECOLLECTIVE.COM or contact the Ring of Gullion Partnership on info@ringofgullion.org

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