Continuing their engagement with local politicians, Friends of Columbanus Bangor met with Jim Shannon MP to discuss the development of the Columban Way in County Down. The Columban Way, a European pilgrim route that traces the footsteps of Columbanus from Mount Leinster in Ireland where he was born in 543 through eight European countries to Bobbio in Italy where he died in 615, is currently being developed on the island of Ireland. After a presentation of the European Columban Way, the group presented him with a document that outlined how the pilgrim route could be developed in the Strangford constituency using established routes such as the Ulster Way and the St Patrick’s Way.
Deborah Girvan, Chairwoman of the Friends of Columbanus Bangor said,
“We have been engaging with politicians from all political parties to ask for their support to develop the Columban Way in Northern Ireland. Councillor Cadogan Enright, Charlie Reid an FoCB member, and myself had a positive meeting with Jim Shannon MP for Strangford, who agreed to follow up on a number of issues with government departments. A small team of Friends of Columbanus volunteers have been walking, surveying and mapping routes in County Down to demonstrate that the Columban Way is a viable long distance walking route that has the potential to boost the rural economy and tourism in the areas where the route passes through.”