‘Craft boost for Ballycastle?’ asks Cllr Cunningham

FOLLOWING a recent Assembly debate on the Creative Industries, Ballycastle SDLP councillor Dónal Cunningham has called for locally based artists and craftspeople to link up in a bid to further promote the Arts and Crafts sector which exists in Ballycastle, Rathlin Island and the Glens of Antrim.

Councillor Cunningham said: “The creative industries have the potential to create employment. At this time of economic difficulty we need to do all in our power to create as many jobs as we can. In Moyle we have such a rich variety of artists and craftspeople. We are home to a huge variety of talents such as potters, painters, photographers, sculptors, jewellery designers and furniture makers and much more.

“I believe there is a huge potential for this industry to grow further by targeting the tourism industry and encouraging visitors to visit Ballycastle, Rathlin Island and the Glens to sample art and craft.

“Government departments, with the department of Culture, Arts, and Leisure taking the lead, should create the supportive conditions for optimum growth within the huge potential which this sector offers.

“Once we mark Moyle out as being somewhere that nurtures and encourages arts and crafts, we will be sending out the message that it is a great place for artists and crafts makers to earn a livelihood, and the sort of place where young and talented people can build a career.”