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Trail of Peace and Tranquillity in Crossgar


David Small, Deputy Secretary of DARD officially opened a 3kms of walking and cycling trail at Tobar Mhuire Estate in Crossgar today. Speaking at the event David said, “I would like to congratulate Outdoor Recreation NI and Tobar Mhuire for their vision in developing this project to increase and enhance the tourism offering in this beautiful setting in Crossgar. I am delighted that this partnership has been able to avail of Rural Development funding to enable the construction of this new multi use trail and associated works." 

Set in sixty acres of woodland, Tobar Mhuire is also the home of Crossgar’s Passionist Community who are looking forward to welcoming members of all communities in the local area as well as visitors interested in exploring the estate’s natural heritage on this new sustainable trail.  

Local TV and Radio presenter, Gerry Kelly, attended the opening and was full of enthusiasm and praise for the new walking and cycling routes commenting, “People of all ages and walks of life will be able to enjoy being outdoors on this wonderful trail in the picturesque surroundings of Tobar Mhuire. Great for the mind, body and soul”.

In addition to the walking and cycling trail, grant aid was obtained from NIEL Challenge Fund 2013-14 to reinstate the pond in the estate’s Victorian walled garden. It is anticipated that the pond along with an eco-trail (an environmentally themed orienteering trail) will be used year round by local residents, schools and community groups.

Paul Mullan, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund Northern Ireland remarked, “Heritage Lottery Fund are keen to work together with local groups to develop projects that making a lasting difference for heritage, people and communities. We give people the opportunity to experience, enjoy and care for their heritage. This new trail along with an ecotrail and interpretation at Tobar Mhuire are an excellent example of what can be achieved. We congratulate the team on their work and hope everyone will enjoy exploring the wealth of heritage within the grounds and throughout Crossgar.”

Speaking about the development of the trail at the launch Colin Henderson MBE, Director at Outdoor Recreation NI, commented, “Outdoor Recreation NI was responsible for securing the funding and developing the multi use trail at Tobar Mhuire. This is just one of the many sustainable outdoor recreation trails we have developed in Northern Ireland over the last 10 years.”

At the launch Father John Friel extended a warm welcome from the Passionist community, encouraging locals to take timeout to enjoy the woodland trail, “We want to warmly welcome all members of the local community to the new trail and encourage them to avail of them often and enjoy the ambiance and the peacefulness that is Tobar Mhuire.”

The project was funded by Down Rural Area Partnership (DRAP), Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), the Tobar Mhuire Passionists’ and NIEL Challenge Fund 2012/13 & 2013/14.

Details of the Tobar Mhuire Trail can be found on WalkNI.com. For those looking for a fun family day out why not visit Tobar Mhuire Estate on Saturday 20th & Sunday 21st September when there will be lots of free guided walks, cycles and orienteering on offer as part of Get Outdoors Weekend 2014

For more information, click here.