Liz McDermott and local artist Peggy Gray showcasing beautiful paintings in the open air at Turbet Island on Saturday.

Recreational facilities for tourists

A project is ongoing around the marina area in Belturbet to further develop recreational facilities, particularly for visitors.

These will include outdoor table tennis and boules, according to Liz McDermott of the Belturbet Development Association.

Similar to bowls, boules is particularly popular on the continent.

“We look forward to welcoming visitors back to the town and the general area after this pandemic abates and a great Belturbet welcome awaits,” enthused Liz.

She explained that the inspiration for the development comes from the continent, observing that many scenic spots beside lakes and rivers across countries like Germany, they cater for outdoor games.

Liz has a son living in Munich, and when she visited the city, she observed first hand the great fun all ages derived from table tennis.

Boules facilities are often located beside playgrounds so that, while the children are playing, parents can enjoy a games.

Liz believes such recreational facilities would entice continental visitors to stay longer in the town and enjoy the great restaurants and pubs.

Open air art attack

Separately, Belturbet artist Peggy Gray displayed some of her paintings in the open air at the Belturbet Walkers Picnic Stop on Turbet Island last Saturday.

Peggy, who attained a degree in fine art, says there is never a day goes past that she doesn’t lift her paintbrushes to create.

“I am doing mostly portraits nowadays. I have painted a lot of scenes from around the town over the years and I have a few of them on display here today,” she said.

“I studied Belturbet through visual arts and I have lots of old picture of the town including the old Market House”, added Peggy of her student days.

The former town councillor takes every opportunity to promote art and believes many people have the capacity to paint and might surprise themselves if they give it a try.

Peggy hopes to stage an exhibition in the future where local people could display their compositions.

Amateur drama is another outlet badly hit by the pandemic but Brian McDermott says the local troupe is looking forward to getting back on the stage.

“We may be able to rehearse before the end of this year and, if not, we definitely be back in action next year. The curtain came down 15 months ago and has stayed down since in the drama world,” said a dejected Brian.

He pointed out that there is “tremendous” talent in the area and they get packed audiences for all their productions.

“If there are people out there with an interest in any aspect of amateur drama, whether that is lighting, writing, production, sound or going on stage, they are more than welcome to come and join us,” encouraged Brian.

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