It was fantastic to hear the sound of music and celebration within The Steele Hall of Enniskillen Royal Grammar School, Portora as 28 members of the community celebrated receiving their certification in Tour Guiding and Story Telling. Gathered together to receive their certification many were meeting face to face for the first time after completing their training courses.
During the pandemic, the Lough Erne Landscape Partnership (LELP), in partnership with Cuilcagh Lakelands Global Geopark delivered two OCN NI Level 2 Tour Guiding course and also one OCN NI Level 2 Oral Skills in Story Telling, in order to provide people with the opportunity to learn new skills whilst engaging with others in their community. A total of 28 people completed the courses and now have the skills and expertise to carry out tours across the region and share the unique heritage of the region with others.
The courses were delivered by Collette McCafferty of Travel and Tourism Associates through a mix of online and in person, and in partnership with Cuilcagh Lakelands UNESCO Global Geopark and supported by funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund and Community Foundation NI.
Students learnt the skills of tour guiding and story telling whilst also gaining a greater knowledge and understanding of the heritage of the Lough Erne landscape and the tales that it holds.
Mr Mukesh Sharma, Trustee and Northern Ireland Committee Chair of The National Lottery Heritage Fund said,
“We’re delighted to support this project, which thanks to money raised by National Lottery players means that more people are getting involved with, protecting, and learning about the exciting heritage in the Lough Erne landscape. Heritage has a huge role to play in instilling pride in communities and boosting local economies across Northern Ireland and this project is a fantastic example of achieving those aims”
Speaking about the project, Chair of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, Councillor Errol Thompson, said “I would like to congratulate those who completed the Tour Guiding and Storytelling courses and those involved in their delivery. The Council is a partner in the Fermanagh and Omagh Community Plan 2030 with the vision of a welcoming, shared and inclusive District. To achieve this vision, one of the key outcomes of the Plan is to ensure that our outstanding, natural, built and cultural heritage is cherished and sustainably managed.
This project contributes to the achievement of the vision and the outcome by providing a valuable resource of trained individuals to ensure that anyone exploring our District has a quality and memorable experience and the wealth of stories about our heritage are retained for future generations.”
Following completion of the courses many of the participants are now working in the field of tour guiding within the region and are hosting tours across the county.
Richard Watson, LELP Chair, expressed his congratulations to the participants in achieving their qualifications, and continued “I am delighted to be here tonight to celebrate the achievements of each of you. This has been a fantastic programme and essential in ensuring that we can share with visitors the unique heritage of the region. This course will compliment the many attractions and activities on offer here in Fermanagh and ensure that Fermanagh can continue to offer new innovative activities for visitors”
If you would like to learn more about the courses or how to be involved please contact firstname.lastname@example.org