A proposed ‘unity bridge’ to join Limavady High School and St Mary’s has passed the first stage of a funding application.
The two schools - one predominantly Protestant, the other predominantly Catholic - have been developing ever closer ties over the past number of years.
The Principals of the two schools had sought the assistance of Limavady Borough Council for an application for £216,000 worth of funding in order to construct the ‘unity bridge’ and - despite a row breaking out along sectarian lines in the council chamber when the issue was being discussed - the application has now passed the first stage of the application process.
Limavady made negative headlines across Ulster earlier this year when a suggestion from the Mayor of Limavady, SDLP Councillor Gerry Mullan, that a unionist councillor should second a motion in support of the project prompted a row which had threatened to overshadow the topic at hand.
However, despite the row, the project received the overwhelming support of councillors in Limavady with no votes against the proposals.
Director of Development, Valerie Richmond, explained the current status of the application for £216,000 to pay for the project: “Confirmation has been received that the Unity Bridge Project has been successful at Stage 1 of the application process. As lead organisation Council has been invited to complete the Stage 2 application form for the Space and Place Programme. Council will be working in partnership with both Limavady High School and St Mary’s High School to meet the deadline for consideration under Tranche 1 - March 31, 2014. March 2014. In the event that this date cannot be met we have one year from the date of the letter of offer to submit the Stage 2 application.”