Local volunteer group energized to help Larne put its best foot forward

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Larne Renovation Generation have won a Brighter Communities funding grant to make further improvements to Larne for tourists and visitors.

Larne Renovation Generation, a 10 strong group of local people who are helping to change the public’s perceptions of the local port, have won a Power NI Brighter Communities funding grant to make further improvements for tourists and visitors from other parts of Northern Ireland.

The community volunteer group is one of three across Northern Ireland to receive the funding as part of a Brighter Communities special £3K Spring/Summer funding pot rolled-out as part of leading energy company Power NI’s Brighter Communities initiative.

Committee member Lynda Hill explains the background to the initiative:

“Over the years Larne has tended to get a hard time and whilst we as locals can have a laugh about it, we do get fed up with some of the criticism. In 2016 a few of us who are Larne born and bred got together and decided to be proactive and look at how we can make the town much more appealing to visitors and of course for everyone who lives in the area.

“Working alongside Mid and East Antrim Borough Council we set about generating ideas, lobbying the Council and securing funding grants to help make a real difference to the town. Projects to date include colourful art murals and sculptures, a Dementia Gardena and other planted zones, the launch of new jaunting car as well as a Selfie Frame for visitors to record and share their own travel tales.

“Next on our agenda is a permanent large display board map of the town and the surrounding area and this is how we are using our £1000 Power NI Brighter Communities grant. We have an existing specially designed tourist map in paper format and we want to use those graphics and content to create a permanent structure which will be located centrally in Larne to help direct visitors to key attractions and provide some historical facts and interesting information about the town.”

Power NI which this year marks its 90th anniversary, first introduced the Brighter Communities initiative back in April 2018. Since then, it has supported a huge range of bespoke groups and clubs from wheelchair basketball, beekeepers, vintage cyclists and young cheerleaders to street soccer, dragon racers, Early Years and stroke recovery groups.

Gemma-Louise Bond, Senior Sponsorship & Events Executive at Power NI said:

“Congratulations to Lynda and her fellow members of Larne Renovation Generation. A permanent map of Larne and the surrounding Glenarm, Glenoe, Kilwaughter and Feystown region will be a real asset to the town’s visitors – both local and further afield during this summer season. So many more people will be holidaying at home this year so the group’s application to our Brighter Communities programme was timely indeed.”