The Start of the Programme

Portadown Young Ambassadors Programme which was completed at the end of 2022 was extremely successful. It provided lots of opportunities for the young people involved. This was made possible through National Lottery Heritage Fund.

The Programme started in August 2021. The first aspect of the training was Tour Guide Training with Kieran from SRC. Within the programme there was also a number of study trips. They helped with developing their tour guide skills. These study trips provided the opportunity for the young people to see different aspects of tour guiding. Also different ways to conduct tours. The first of these trips was to Dan Winters Cottage and Brownlow House.

The Tour Guide Training continued into December. During those months the Young Ambassadors also visited Thomas Street Methodist Church, St Marks Parish Church and a trip to the historic city of Londonderry.

As part of the Tour Guide training, they had to pick a historic building in the town. They then had to give a full history of the building. They all successfully completed the tour guide training.



Going into 2022

In January 2022, the Young Ambassadors started their First Aid and Defibrillator Training. Throughout the programme their aim was to complete research into local men who served during the First World War. To help aid in the educational aspect of this, the Young Ambassadors enjoyed a trip to Craigavon House and Somme Museum. They also had educational presentations from Carol Walker MBE which looked at the role of Women during the First World War. They where also able to see and study artefacts from that time.

The Young Ambassadors successfully completed their First Aid Training. They then moved on to completing an OCN Level 1 Course in Ulster Scots History. The Course was led by the Ulster Scots Community Network.

As we moved into April of 2022, we conducted a number of workshops. The other element the Young Ambassadors started during this time was working towards their volunteer certificates. One of their workshops was successfully using TikTok to engage with the local community. For this element they each picked a World War One Veteran from the local area, who served but came home after the war. They each made a TikTok to reflect their chosen individuals life story.

For their Volunteer Certificates, some of the Young Ambassadors helped out at our Heritage Easter Camp and organised activities for the kids to do. This was done under the supervision of Staff and Mentors. The Young Ambassadors also continued to help out at other events Portadown Heritage Tours had organised.

The Summer Months and Beyond

The overall target for the Young Ambassadors was a study trip to the Somme and Ypres Salient. Once there they would act as ambassadors for the local area and conduct tours, telling the story of local men who died during the First World War. After Easter they spent a number of weeks researching different stories. They each conducted research into a serviceman on a memorial, buried in a grave and also a place of interest. Throughout this time they also worked on their communication and presentation skills.

For their Volunteer Certificates, the young ambassadors had to complete 30 volunteer hours from April to September. There was lots of opportunities to do this through our events and tours. Some of the ambassadors where able to gain a large number of hours through volunteering as part of our Ulster Scots Summer School. By the end of the period four of our dedicated ambassadors completed their volunteer certificates.

In October, the Young Ambassadors made the trip to the western front. With most performing their tours to a high and dedicated standard. For those who put the work into the programme the rewards where plentiful in terms of opportunities and gains for the future as well as their own personal development.


As well as visiting many of the sites across the Western Front, the Ambassadors also had the privilege to lay a wreath at the Menin Gate in Ypres.

Thanks to National Lottery Heritage Fund

The programme was a great success. We would like to thank National Lottery Players and National Lottery Heritage Fund for the successful funding to run the Young Ambassadors Programme. Through their support we where able to provide opportunities outside of normal education programmes. The programme has been praised throughout the local community and by local leaders in the community. We are very pleased to welcome three of the now qualified ambassadors to the PHT Volunteer Team. This will provide further opportunities for the young individuals to gain vital skills and development for further education and experience for future careers.