Peace project helps put trailblazers on the virtual map

AN EU funded project has helped bring 40 young people from across the Antrim & Newtownabbey Borough together on a digital initiative.

Funded under the PEACE IV Programme, The Virtually Connected Shared Space project has been working over the last twelve months to unite young people aged 13-18 as they collaborated to create Tourist and Information trails for Antrim town centre, Toome and Whiteabbey.

Managed by creative arts specialists and Wheelworks the participants learned how to use digital technology to identify and showcase parts of their communities while also obtaining an ASDAN Accreditation in Expressive Arts.

The project was also facilitated by Brilliant Trails, one of the UK’s leading trail development organisations, who worked with the young people to create interactive maps and also develop Trailblazer, an online virtual trail app that will become a legacy resource for the Borough.

Speaking about the initiative, Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey, Alderman John Smyth said: “The success of this project is largely due to the efforts, skills, commitment and expertise of all those who took part in it.

“Together these young people have come together to learn more about each other and to create something totally unique that will add a whole new dimension to those living and visiting the Borough.

“Our thanks are also extended to all our partners on this project, the Council team and Caroline and Margaret in Whiteabbey, Sharon in Rathenraw and Una in Toome without whose help, the project would not have happened.”

Maurice McLaughlin from Wheelworks said: “The Trail Blazer app is now available to download on Apple or Android platforms via the app store or play store.

“Just download and follow the instructions, it is as simple as that and you too can see the immense effort these great young people have put in to making something that so many will hopefully avail of.”

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