ONE of the region’s biggest and best-attended annual events is set to soar this year, boosted by high flying support from Rockwell Collins Kilkeel.
A world-leading company in the aviation sector, and a major private sector employer in the region, Rockwell Collins will be backing Newry, Mourne and Down District Council’s Festival of Flight on Saturday 5 August.
This will be the sixth successive year of support for the mega-festival from a business which manufactures seats for the world’s major airlines at its Kilkeel factory.
The 2017 event is expected to attract more than 100,000 spectators to marvel at an afternoon of aerial extravaganza headlined by the world famous Red Arrows aerobatic team, supported by a packed programme of on-the-ground family fun, centred on Newcastle.
Welcoming the injection of private sector investment in the Festival of Flight Councillor Roisin Mulgrew, Chairperson of Newry, Mourne and Down District Council said:
“Given its global reputation in aviation, and its prominent position within the economy of our region, Rockwell Collins is the perfect partner for our annual aerial spectacular and we are delighted to welcome them on board.
“Thanks to their generosity we are able to build on the success of this fantastic event, taking it to new heights and maximising its positive impact on our hospitality sector.
“In Newry Mourne & Down we are firmly focused on delivering visitor destination experiences that will deliver what we refer to as ‘Epic Moments’ – holiday highpoints that are Experiential, Personalised, Iconic and Immersive and Creative.
“We are committed to creating wonderful events which complement our world-class venues and majestic landscapes and present Newry, Mourne and Down as an inspiring and memorable holiday destination, supporting our strategic goal of building tourism as part of a vibrant economy.
“Our annual Festival of Flight clearly fulfils all those objectives, and more. We’re looking forward to an incredible day which showcases our wonderful region to the max.”
Looking forward to this year’s aerial extravaganza, Martin McGinley, Vice President and Managing Director of Rockwell Collins Kilkeel said:
“Rockwell Collins is a global leader in aviation and high-integrity solutions, providing world markets with a comprehensive portfolio of products and services that can transform our customers’ futures.
“Aviation is both our business and our passion and, through our longstanding support for the Festival of Flight, created and staged by Newry, Mourne & Down District Council, we are delighted to share that passion for aviation with our local community, and with the tens of thousands of visitors who will visit our region to enjoy one of Ireland’s biggest, best-attended, and most spectacular air shows.
“For us, this is an opportunity to put something back into our local community and we look forward not only to the adrenalin rush of world-class aerial display in a truly world-class location, but also to a weekend which provides a significant economic boost for the region’s tourism and hospitality sector.
“On behalf of everyone who will enjoy the drama in the skies over Dundrum Bay, I commend the vision of Newry, Mourne Down District Council in ‘thinking big’ and making this event such an important annual highlight of Northern Ireland’s Summer events season.
“Thanks also go to the diverse agencies, organisations, communities and individuals who combine expertise, boundless enthusiasm with a vast amount of preparation to create this wonderful high-flying programme.”