Pupils hit winning trail
The Harberton to Taughmonagh Nature Trail in south Belfast has secured a £50,000 Big Lottery Fund grant following a nail-biting head-to-head in The People's Millions on UTV on Monday night.
It is fantastic news for the local project, which can now really make a difference by turning a strip of overgrown wasteland surrounding Harberton Special School and Taughmonagh Primary School into a child-friendly nature trail to include a wide variety of trees, along with children's play equipment, a seated story telling area and a pathway.
The project will also incorporate an IT element, with barcode-like images dotted throughout the trail that can be scanned by smart phones or tablets, taking the user to a linked webpage
Ursula Reid from the project said: "We are absolutely delighted to have won – we want to thank all those people who voted for us yesterday and have helped us make this a reality.
"The project will make a big difference to pupils at both schools and we can't wait to get started." This is the eighth year that the Big Lottery Fund and UTV have given the public the chance to choose where the Lottery good cause cash goes in their region. The People's
Millions public vote determines which deserving cause will win the contest and take the funding back to their community
This week (November 25-27), two projects have been going head-to-head on UTV evening news pitching for a life changing grant. There are three awards of up to £50,000 for grabs in the region – one award for each night, as well as a bonus award announced on Thursday for the runner up with the most phone votes across the week.
Since The People's Millions began in 2005 the competition has funded over 520 diverse community projects UK-wide withe £27.8 million in Big Lottery Fund good cause money.
Joanne McDowell, Big Lottery Fund's NI Director, said: "This is a brilliant result for the people of south Belfast and shows what groups can achieve when they have the support of their community behind them."
Michael Wilson, Managing Director, UTV Television, said: "This is a great opportunity for UTV viewers to have their say in how thousands of pounds of Lottery money, set aside for good causes, can benefit their area. Their support has been terrific so far, and I would encourage people to continue backing their local projects."
This year across the UK up to £200,000 will be awarded by the public through The People's Millions in Northern Ireland.