Sizzling Summer of Events in Portaferry

Ards and North Down Borough Council is delighted to announce a series of Council sponsored events taking place in Portaferry from July through to September. The collection makes the most of the town’s outstanding location, with wonderful landmarks and the beauty of the surrounding waters.

Narrows Series Regatta: 11th to 14th July

This Narrows Series Regatta welcomes over 140 boats to Strangford Lough. The Regatta launches on Monday 11 July with the Bar Buoy Race at the mouth of the lough and over the course of the event, spectators will see 13 classes of boats compete in a number of races.

Look out for Glens, Rivers, FFs, lasers, Dingeys and more! There will be other activities during the event and be sure to pop into ‘PAST’; Portaferry and Strangford Trust, which is featuring exhibitions on The Vikings on Strangford Lough  and Paddle Boarding.


Portaferry Gala: 16th to 22nd July

Portaferry Gala Festival celebrates its Emerald Anniversary this year, running for 55 years.

This 7-day programme has events including the brand-new Bingo Loco, Burger Fest, Taste your Town and Farming Community Day.

New this year will be ‘Talk of the Walk’, following a map trail around the streets of Portaferry and discovering some street entertainment on the way!


Sails and Sounds Festival: 4th to 7th August

Visitors can enjoy sea kayaking, SUP, Rowing, Ruffian Boats competitions along with environmental talks, crafts, and demos of all things maritime.

Portaferry’s heritage will be brought to life through a variety of displays, talks and exhibitions including from the awesome Magnus Viking Experience.

The festival will showcase local food, foraging, live music, dance, Sea Shanty workshops.


Comedy Arts Festival: 16th to 25th September

This comedy event, part funded by Arts Council NI, runs across two weekends between 16 to 25 September and is held in the stunning Portico.

Kicking off the festival on Friday 16 September, is one of Ireland’s best loved comics – Neil Delamere of Blame Game fame, followed on Saturday 17 September by true life stories and poetry by the charming and raucous Owen O’Neill.

Earning over 60m fans on YouTube, Rainer Hersch’s ‘All Classical Music Explained’ show on Sunday 18 September, will be a comedic and musical spectacle for all the family!

The following weekend starts on Friday 23 September with a dazzling double bill of stand-up featuring Teresa Livingstone (The Blame Game, Soft Border Patrol, Late Licence) and Diona Doherty (The Blame Game, Derry Girls, What Happens In Ulster…).

Saturday 24 September is all dancing and all singing with the ever-fabulous Motown tribute group The Iconettes and their band The Hitzvilles.

Wrapping up the festival on the afternoon of Sunday 25 September, is a unique performance of silent movie with organ accompaniment. Leicester Square Odeon’s organist Donald Mackenzie will play an exciting live improvised score to Buster Keaton’s family friendly romantic comedy ‘The General.’


For information on all local events:

L-R: Brian Savage, Narrows Series Regatta; Dr Verity Peet, Comedy Arts Festival;
Jemma Snell, Events Officer, Ards and North Down Borough Council;
Patricia O’Neill, Portaferry Gala; John McAlea, Sails and Sounds

Gala Week Bingo

Bingo Loco is coming to Portaferry Gala on Wednesday 20th July 2022.

Bingo like you’ve never seen before…. Prizes, Rave Rounds, Conga Lines, Dance Offs and much more. Tickets £20 pp. Strictly Over 18s only. Bar facilities available.

Tickets available via Eventbrite from Friday 27th May 2022.

Good Morning Call

Good Morning Call is a FREE confidential service for all residents of Ards and North Down Borough Council over the Age of 65. The calls take place Monday-Friday from 9.15am-11.15am with a minimum of two calls a week delivered from one of our trained volunteers.

We can take referrals from other services, family members or even self-referrals. Once referred we can arrange for a telephone conversation to discuss the service in more detail.

The Good Morning Call allows people to remain independent in their own homes, talk to a friendly voice and gave family members peace of mind knowing that we are checking in with their loved ones.

We have a 24/7 answering machine which allows clients to leave a message should they have appointments and will not be in for their call.

If you would like to know more or have someone in mind, please contact AGE North Down and Ards on 028 9127 1968 or email

Portaferry Gala 2021

Welcome to Portaferry Galafest 2021. All Gala events are ticketed events and will adhere to current Covid Rules and Guidelines. Check Portaferry Gala Facebook and Website for details on what’s taking place, how to book and register.

Ferry FM will be broadcasting online throughout the week and keeping you up to date with all that’s happening. Listen on your Computer, Laptop, Smartphone, Tablet, Smart TV and Smart Speaker. We’re available on various apps including TuneIn, Radioline, MyTuner Radio.

Radio Broadcast Hours

Whilst our audience has grown greatly over the last 2 years, unfortunately our income hasn’t. Despite our best efforts to attract advertising to the station, we simply can’t sustain the cost of broadcasting 24/7. Radio stations pay to play music, as is only right, how else would musicians, publishers and composers earn a living otherwise?

If our audience continues to rise at the rate it has done, we will be faced with an unsustainable bill. The directors have taken the difficult decision to reduce the station broadcast hours to those hours with the biggest local audience:- 6pm – 12am weekdays; and 12pm -12am weekends. We realise this will come as a big disappointment to our “ex-ports” in the US, Australia and Canada but rest assured, the directors will keep exploring avenues to enable the service to resume full-time broadcasting.

Thanks for listening and remember our podcast page has listen again items posted on a regular basis. Fans of Hendi’s Hits will be pleased to know the programme will continue on Slice Audio, weekdays 10am – 1pm.

Covid-19 NI Update

Coronavirus is still here. The current regulations are in place until 5 March 2021. They will be reviewed on 18 February 2021. Some of the restrictions will be in law through regulation, while others will be in guidance.  Everyone is legally required to comply with the regulations.

The regulations will be available on the Department of Health website:

A summary guide outlining the restrictions is available at this link:

Covid-19 New NI Lockdown

Northern Ireland will go into a six week Lockdown on Boxing Day. NI Executive Ministers met on Thursday amid growing concern about the rise of coronavirus cases in Northern Ireland. The Health minister said the restrictions will come into effect from midnight on Christmas Day, taking effect on the 26th.

Robin Swann said: “The Executive has probably taken its hardest decision, its most deep decision, in regards to how we have had to combat Covid-19 collectively. “We will be looking to a six week lock down where the message will be work from home, stay at home.

The agreed measures include:

Non-essential retail will close, including garden centres, click and collect services, and homeware

All hospitality will close, except deliveries and takeaway (Hotels will be able to remain open until 28th December to accommodate Christmas bookings)

Close contact services eg. hairdressers, beauticians etc will close

All essential businesses that will be allowed to open must close at 8pm for the first week of lockdown

No household mixing, except in an emergency

People will be asked to stay at home from 8pm – 6am for the first week of the lockdown

No changes have made to the Christmas bubbling system, which runs from the 23rd to the 27th of December.

No outdoor mixing with other households

Outdoor exercise will only be permitted alone or with members of your household

Elite sport will be cancelled during the first week of lockdown

Religious services can continue depending on a risk assessment

Number at funerals and weddings limited to 25. Receptions are not allowed

Christmas bubbling arrangements are still permitted, however people are being asked to limit their contact with others.

Full News Story can be read at UTV News

Full details of Coronavirus Rules in Northern Ireland at NI Direct

Please stay safe and follow Coronavirus and Social Distancing Rules. Ferry FM also broadcasts Coronavirus information.