New walking tour is launched for the ‘culturally curious’

Travel writer Paul Clements with actor, Paddy Scully, and Councillor, M�irt�n

Travel writer Paul Clements with actor, Paddy Scully, and Councillor, M�irt�n " Muilleoir, Lord Mayor of Belfast, in the Lord Mayor's Parlour in Belfast City Hall at launch of Belfasts newest walking tour called In the footsteps of Richard Hayward.

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A new walking tour of Belfast which aims to combine history and humour was launched at Belfast City Hall yesterday.

The two-hour tour will feature sights around the city associated with Richard Hayward, a writer, actor and singer.

While he was born in Lancashire, Hayward settled with his wife in Belfast and became one of the founding members of the Empire Players (the Belfast Repertory Theatre Company).

Travel writer Paul Clements will take tourists around the city in the 50th anniversary year of Hayward’s death.

Mr Clements, who has written a biography on Hayward to be published in May, said he may have been an Englishman but he knew Belfast better than most.

“Hayward’s achievements and the Belfast that he knew are not known to many people, yet he was one of the most significant men of his generation and was a colourful character,” he said.

“This tour will help retrieve his legacy and bring him to a new audience. Hayward knew Belfast better than most and, in particular, loved its Georgian architecture which he wrote about in detail in his books.”

Speaking at the launch Lord Mayor Mairtin O Muilleoir said the tour will resurrect the memory of a writer who loved Belfast.

“It will appeal to anyone with a sense of history and to the culturally curious,” he said.

“It will also spark off new interest in a writer who has been forgotten but who wrote lovingly of the city where he lived for most of his life and who was part of the cultural landscape for many years.”

Supported by the Arts Council, the tours will be held in conjunction with Visit Belfast. They cost £7.

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