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Watersports Clubs open their doors for Flow

Posted on April 28, 2016 @ 12:21 PM in AdventureCanoeingBeachesLocal Outdoors

Over 20 watersport clubs are opening up their doors and offering local people the opportunity to take part in a range of taster events as part of a new initiative called Flow.

Over the weekend of 14th & 15th May participants will be able to try their hand at canoeing, sailing, water-skiing, wakeboarding, kite surfing, rowing, angling, stand up paddle boarding and diving for as little as £10 or less!

To give you a flavour of what’s happening over the weekend we’ve selected some of our favourite events!

Flow Blog Collage Image

Give Rowing a Try - £2pp
City of Derry Boating Club, Londonderry, 14th & 15th May

Enjoy an introductory rowing session on the River Foyle and be part of a crew learning new skills.

Juniors Try Canoe Polo - £3pp
Belfast Kayak Academy, Belfast, 14th May

Have a go in a kayak on the water and play a game of canoe polo. This will be a fun intro session into a great sport at a state of the art canoe polo facility in Belfast.

Team Selection Trial for Skiffie World Championships - £3pp
Dundrum Coastal Rowing Club, Dundrum, 14th & 15th May

Once in a lifetime opportunity for beginners to compete for a place in the selection squad going to the Skiffie World Championships on home waters on Strangford Lough from 25th – 30th July.

Try Sailing or Kayaking – FREE
County Antrim Yacht Club, Whitehead, 14th May

County Antrim Yacht Club are holding an afternoon of taster sessions from 1.30pm - 5pm for beginners to have a go!

Try Rowing with Lagan Scullers Club - £5pp
Lagan Scullers Club, Belfast, 14th & 15th May

See Belfast from the river and feel the sleek boat glide through the water underneath you as you learn to row.

This is just a taster of what will take place during the weekend of 14th & 15th May. For information on how to book and to see what other events and activities that are taking place visit

Latest comment posted by Athens Coast on December 30, 2016 @ 12:51 PM

Thanks for sharing this post. It's good news for local people for enjoying watersport clubs. Read more >

Beverley Magowan
Beverley Magowan  Senior Marketing Officer

Beverley used to be a keen horse rider but since joining a local cycle club in 2013 she has developed a passion for 2 wheels instead of 4 hoofs! Meaning she can often be found on a bike exploring the roads across the country!

Must Try Watersports for £10 or Less!

Posted on April 14, 2016 @ 12:54 PM in AdventureCanoeingBeachesLocal Outdoors

Over the weekend of Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th May there will be over 20 watersport clubs based all over Northern Ireland offering local people an opportunity to ‘Have a Go’ in a range of watersports for as little as £10 or less!

With no previous experience necessary and taster events in canoeing, sailing, water skiing, wake boarding, rowing, angling, stand up paddle boarding and diving there has never been a better time to get on the water and get wet!


Here are just a few of the thrilling activities you could be experiencing:

'Push the Boat Out' Sailing Taster - FREE
Cushendall Sailing & Boating Club, Cushendall, 14th May
Sailing has everything, from being a sociable relaxing experience to a high adrenaline, high action sport. Experience the adrenaline buzz of skimming across the water in a small dinghy or be part of a team in a larger keelboat. Come and ‘have a go’ at Cushendall Sailing & Boating Club for free!

Learn to Paddle your own Canoe - £3pp
Broighter Paddlers Canoe Club, Strathfoyle, 14th May
Learn the fundamentals of how to paddle a canoe and then give the rapidly growing team sport of canoe polo a go in this fun introductory session. A women’s only session is also available from 3pm - 4.30pm, subject to demand.

Discover Kitesurfing on the Beach - £10pp
Irish Kite Surfing Association, Tyrella Beach, 14th & 15th May
Let’s go fly a kite on an introductory session led by qualified kite surfing instructors on dry land. This event will take place on Tyrella Beach and is designed to elevate you into kite surfing! On the day you will be taken through a range of skills and techniques to get you launching your own kite.

Introduction to Fly Fishing for Women – FREE
Irish Ladies Fly Fishing Association, Ballyclare, 14th May
Angling is a male dominated sport but this all-day taster event will give women the chance to find out what it's all about. Taking place at Straid Fishery which is a 20 acre lake, participants will benefit from the presence of some of the 2016 International Ladies Fly Fishing Team being on hand to guide participants.

Row the Lagan – £5pp
Lagan Currachs, Belfast, 14th & 15th May
Enjoy a leisurely row on a traditional wooden boat on the River Lagan finished off with a visit to 'T13' in the Titanic Quarter of Belfast where you will get a guided tour of the build of a 33ft 10 man currach rowing boat.

Learn to Waterski/Wakeboard with the Experts - £10pp
Meteor Water Ski Club, The Temple, 14th & 15th May
Have a go and experience this exhilarating water sport with encouraging instruction given at all times to ensure success.

Stand Up Paddling Taster for Beginners - £5pp
Erne Paddlers, Enniskillen, 14th & 15th May
Take in the scenery around Lough Erne as you try your hand at Stand Up Paddleboarding with Erne Paddlers. This is a fast growing paddle sport providing a great fun core work out with the possibility of getting wet!

These taster events are being offered as part of a wider campaign called ‘Flow – Get into Watersports’. This campaign is an ideal way for those with no background in watersports to learn the basics under the watchful eye of qualified instructors through taking part in one of the many taster events. These taster events will be followed closely by a series of training programmes for those looking to continue in their chosen sport.

With too many to mention make sure to visit for a full list of the events on offer in your local area.

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Beverley Magowan
Beverley Magowan  Senior Marketing Officer

Beverley used to be a keen horse rider but since joining a local cycle club in 2013 she has developed a passion for 2 wheels instead of 4 hoofs! Meaning she can often be found on a bike exploring the roads across the country!

M&S beach initiative a ‘clean’ success

Posted on May 7, 2014 @ 12:21 PM in Beaches

Sarah Monaghan, on behalf of M&S, rounds up their Big Beach Clean Up which took place over 4 days on beaches across Northern Ireland...

The results are in….. (Drum roll please)

The grand total of rubbish collected at the 2014 M&S Big Beach Clean-ups in Northern Ireland is:

789 kgs!

Yes, almost a whopping 800 kilos of litter were collected over 4 days at the beach cleans at Loughshore in Jordanstown, Portstewart Strand, Ballyholme in Bangor and Warrenpoint beach.

Almost 300 people joined forces to rid the beaches of waste which, amongst general rubbish such as wrappers and tin cans, this year included a car mat, a For Sale sign, a Christmas bauble, a bullet case, a car headlight and underpants!

Who would have thought!

The four beach cleans, which took place between 24- 27 April, were part of a nationwide campaign tackling litter on 95 UK beaches and 45 canals. The initiative is in partnership with the Marine Conservation Society and the Canal & River Trust, and there have been some fantastic reports from right across the UK.

The highlight in NI was the clean-up in Jordanstown which saw over 100 people take part.  The volunteers were treated to an M&S BBQ and entertainment from the Cool FM ‘bus’.

The fact that the sun was shining was an added bonus!

Thanks to all who helped out!

Beverley Magowan
Beverley Magowan  Senior Marketing Officer

Beverley used to be a keen horse rider but since joining a local cycle club in 2013 she has developed a passion for 2 wheels instead of 4 hoofs! Meaning she can often be found on a bike exploring the roads across the country!

How you can do your bit to protect our local beaches this April

Posted on April 7, 2014 @ 1:39 PM in Beaches

Sarah Monaghan, on behalf of M&S, is encouraging everyone to take part in the M&S Big Beach Clean this Easter, here she talks about some of the not so obvious pieces of litter that has been found on the beach and how you can get involved to help keep our Northern Irish beaches clean.

A bath, a coffee maker, and a Freeview box.

(I feel “and a cuddly toy” coming on.)

But no, this isn’t a list of Generation Game prizes but in fact, just some of the stranger items found on our beaches last year during Marks & Spencer’s Big Beach Clean-up.

Who brings a bath to the beach anyway?

In 2013, a whopping 9,000 people volunteered and collected 4,000 bin bags full of litter, covering

300km of beaches and canals across the U.K.

Most of the litter collected was common waste items such as fishing nets, ropes and bottles tops- but there was even a HM Prison Service toothbrush!

Litter on our beaches not only looks unattractive but is a serious threat to those who enjoy the great outdoors.

Broken bottles and sanitary waste pose a real danger to beach walkers, while items such as discarded fishing nets are a risk to our divers, surfers and boaters.

(And I don’t even have to mention how litter is also killing our wildlife and marine life.)

Now, here’s how you can help!

This year’s M&S Big Beach Clean-up will tackle litter on four beaches here in Northern Ireland, which are:

  • Loughshore Park, Jordanstown – Thursday 24th April at 10am
  • Portstewart Strand – Friday 25th April at 10am
  • Ballyholme, Bangor – Saturday 26th April at 11am
  • Warrenpoint, Newry – Sunday 27th April at 12 noon

The UK target is to clear more than last year’s massive haul of 30 tonnes of litter.

If you want to put that in perspective – it’s the equivalent weight of two double decker buses!

There’s also a nice little incentive (apart from helping the environment) – a £5 M&S voucher on the day if you register in advance at

Come on, get involved and save NI’s outdoors!

Beverley Magowan
Beverley Magowan  Senior Marketing Officer

Beverley used to be a keen horse rider but since joining a local cycle club in 2013 she has developed a passion for 2 wheels instead of 4 hoofs! Meaning she can often be found on a bike exploring the roads across the country!

Hit the Beach during Northern Ireland Adventureland Weekend!

Posted on March 25, 2014 @ 4:29 PM in Beaches

Adventureland is back and there’s lots happening on the beach!

On Saturday 5th & Sunday 6th April 2014 an array of outdoor activities are taking place across the country at prices too good to miss for Northern Ireland’s Adventureland Weekend. With a packed programme of events for either £10pp or 50% off there is something for everyone from those looking for a great day out with the kids to the adrenaline junkie looking for their next adventure. If you love hitting the beach to experience the ‘great outdoors’ then here is what’s happening on a variety of beaches over the weekend:

Surf’s Up!

Surfing is undoubtedly one of the most popular activities on the beaches of Northern Ireland. This year’s Northern Ireland Adventureland Weekend includes lots of fantastic offers to get you riding your first wave in no time, all at a reduced cost!

NI Adventurland Weekend Surfing Lessons

Family Surf Session: Long Line Surf School, Benone Beach, £10 (Saturday 5th April)

The perfect activity for all ages from 6 years old meaning the whole family is sure to have a blast on the water! Put a wetsuit on and jump into the blue Atlantic Ocean; it’s time to learn how to surf the waves into the shore! The perfect opportunity to take in the culture of surfing along one of Ireland's longest beaches, this exhilarating and exciting experience is perfect for all families who love the beach and everything about it.

Surf Experience for Adults: Long Line Surf School, Benone Beach, £10 (Saturday 5th April)

During this adult only session you will learn all the skills and techniques needed to ride the waves at one of the most highly qualified ASI (Academy of Surf Instructors) schools in the country.

Portrush Surfing Experience: Troggs Surf School, East Strand Portrush, 50% off (Saturday 5th & Sunday 6th April)

Learn to surf with Northern Ireland’s only Quicksilver approved surf school with the highest qualified coaches in Northern Ireland. This is a 2 hour beginner session where all equipment is provided including wetsuits and surf boards so all you have to worry about is showing up and having fun!

Learn to Surf: Alive Surf School, Portrush West Strand, 50% off (Saturday 5th & Sunday 6th April)

Join Alive Surf School for a brilliant day out and learn how to surf on one of the North Coast's most popular beaches.  All equipment including surf boards and wetsuits will be provided. Once kitted out you will learn the basics before hitting the waves to put it into practice. All ages from 8 and up are welcome.

Try something NEW!

A number of activities are NEW to this year’s Northern Ireland Adventureland Weekend which we think are well worth a blast! Have a go at one (or more) of these activities during this special offer weekend:


Land Paddling Experience:  Blokart World, Benone Beach, 50% off (Saturday 5th & Sunday 6th April)

You won’t have to travel far to participate in this popular Californian beach activity. A new activity to the beaches of Northern Ireland, a land paddle is a long board on skate wheels controlled by the rider’s feet, weight and distribution, similar to stand up paddleboarding (but on land). After a short briefing your instructor will guide you on the skills required to get the best from your experience introducing riding stance, stopping and breaking techniques, toe side turns, heel side turns and paddle techniques.  

SUP Experience
Troggs Surf School, East Strand Portrush, 50% off (Saturday 5th & Sunday 6th April)

Have fun with family and friends whilst learning one of the fastest growing sports in the world with Northern Ireland’s first ASI Accredited SUP Instructors. Get ready to take part in a fully structured 1 hour starter lesson at East Strand Beach or Portrush Harbour (depending on conditions). The lesson will include information on your paddle and board as well as all the paddling skills and techniques you need to know to learn stand up paddling in a few easy and fun steps.

All bookings should be made through the OutdoorNI Adventureland Website where the full programme of events can be viewed. Places are filling up fast so we suggest booking early to avoid disappointment.

Jayne Woodrow
Jayne Woodrow  Marketing Officer & Active Clubs Coordinator for Walking

Jayne joined the marketing team of Outdoor Recreation NI in March 2014. She oversees the marketing and communication on WalkNI, OutdoorNI and Walking in Your Community Project. Most recently she has been working with Parkrun Ireland & UK to introduce the 'Walk @ parkrun' initiative.

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