Derry City and Strabane District Council have confirmed some adjustments and additions to the 2019 Halloween Festival to ensure that as many people as possible can have access to and be included in the celebrations.
The Halloween programme begins in earnest this weekend when the Heart of Samhain festival village will begin in Guildhall Square and Waterloo Place while entertainment and activities for all the family are being hosted across Derry and Strabane.
In Derry an accessible drop off and pick up zone for those with more limited mobility will be in operation in Shipquay Place and Foyleside Shopping Centre from 28th until October 31st.
From 26th – 1st November a Quiet Space Provision and Sensory Space are will be in operation at the Guildhall, Foyleside Shopping Centre and the Foyle Arena.
To help protect children or any vulnerable person, safety wrist bands are available at the pop up Information Point in Guildhall Square which you can add a contact number to in case they are separated from their parent or guardian.
Similarly Jam (Just a minute) Cards are available at the Information Point or can be downloaded as an app.
Carriers of a JAM Card with communication difficulties can show it to trained members of staff as a discrete and easy way of telling them they may have special requirements and may need a little extra time.
Accessible toilets are available at the Guildhall, the Tower Museum, Foyle Street Car Park and Foyleside Shopping Centre and a Changing Area is available at the Milennium Forum, Foyleside Shopping Centre and the Foyle Arena.
Mobiloos, the world’s first attended mobile toilet service with hoist and changing bench, are at Foyle Street Car Park throughout the festival and during the Carnival and Fireworks display on October 31st they will be relocated to the Accessible Carpark and Viewing Area at the Strand Road Carpark.
The Awakening the Walls trail is from Monday 28th to Wednesday 30th October from 6pm to 8.30pm where disabled parking is available at existing city centre car parks but Bishop Street Car Park will have no parking after 2pm and no vehicle movement after 5pm. Society Street Car Park will also be closed all day.
On the night of the climactic Halloween Carnival Parade and Fireworks, Accessible Parking is available at Strand Road Car Park from 5pm – 9pm and it is recommended you park before 6pm.
Halloween night Accessible Toilets are located at Fletcher Avenue, Council Car Park, Strand Road Car Park, Queen’s Quay and Police Court Street.
Also on Halloween night an accessible viewing platform and viewing area are located at Strand Road Car Park and Queen’s Quay where limited seating is available while a Quiet Space is available in the Guildhall from 9am to 9pm.
A Quiet Space Provision will also be available at the North West Regional College where parking is also be available at the front car park.
For further information on ‘Access & Inclusion’ in Derry or Strabane during this year’s festival visit http://derryhalloween.com/accessibility-derry or contact Louise Boyce on 07713707912 / firstname.lastname@example.org.
The parade starts at Queen’s Quay, City Centre at 7.15pm and will finish at 8.15pm, there are no steep hills on parade but lighting is limited, the route is all flat.
Expect noise levels to be high and large crowds will be spectating, fireworks start at 8.20pm and will last for 15 minutes.
Expect loud noise from fireworks and flashes for duration, contact stewards/security or council staff in high-vis vests if you require information or directions.
The Carnival Parade takes place on Thursday 31st October, departing Queen’s Quay at 7.15pm, concluding with the finale fireworks at 8.15pm.
The route this year leaves Queen’s Quay Car Park travelling up Boating Club Lane and turning onto Strand Road.
It turns at Harbour House Roundabout, travelling to Water Street, along the Foyle Embankment and returning to Queen’s Quay Car Park.
The Derry Halloween festival was voted Best International Experience at the NI Tourism Awards and will run from Saturday October 26th until Friday November 1st.
Highlights include the Awakening the Walls trail around the city centre, a Carnival Parade, the Legenderry Halloween food event and of course the fireworks finale.
For more information on Awakening the Walls and Derry Halloween, visit derryhalloween.com or follow @DerryHalloween on social media #DerryHalloween.