5 Mins with...Lucy, our Bookings and Sales Assistant
We grabbed a chat with our Bookings and Sales Assistant, Lucy to have a chat about her time at Carrick-a-Rede as part of our #PeopleBehindtheBridge. We want to share the amazing staff members behind the scenes that play a crucial part in welcoming all thousands of visitors every year.
Tell us a bit about yourself and how you came to start working at Carrick-a-Rede?
I am from the local area - I live close to Carrick-a-Rede in a village called Armoy and started working full-time with the National Trust at the Giant’s Causeway, after leaving school. That was 2 and a half years ago! I then took up my role at CAR just over a year ago.
So, you have experience of working at two National Trust sites?
Yes, some days I am at the Giant’s Causeway in the Booking Office, looking after online bookings answering emails and taking phone calls, and other days I will be at Carrick-a-Rede meeting and greeting coaches and groups of visitors. It’s very useful having experience of both sites because people who visit Carrick-a-Rede will often have also visited the Giant’s Causeway and vice versa, so I can provide them with useful information about both.
What is your favourite thing about working at a famous tourist attraction?
The variation of people I get to meet every day. On a typical day I could meet people from Dublin who have perhaps just driven up to the Causeway Coast for a day trip, or people from as far as Australia who are on a trip of a lifetime! It’s very refreshing and every day is different!
Describe Carrick-a-Rede in three words.
Unique, beautiful and familiar. Ok, so it might not be familiar to everyone… in fact to the people who visit from other parts of the world this is unlike anything they will have ever seen but it is familiar to me. I’ve been crossing the rope bridge since I was able to walk! I still have my certificates from when I crossed the bridge as a child. The certificates haven’t really changed that much since, and the bridge is still as exhilarating as I remember back then.
Tell us one thing people may not know about CAR.
It still surprises me that despite the fact it is such a huge part of its history there are many visitors who do not know that Carrick-a-Rede had a thriving salmon fishery on the island until the 1960’s. It was only in 2002 that the last fish was caught at Carrick-a-Rede.
People just see the bridge and recognise it as a tourist attraction instead of a workplace and a working fishery. It wouldn’t still be here if it wasn’t for the National Trust looking after it.
Do you have a top tip for a tourist from another country visiting the Causeway Coast and Carrick-a-Rede?
Make use of the paths that connect the different sites along this coastline. There is so much unseen beauty. Set time aside to walk around the site and take in the views from the paths. You can start at Carrick-a-Rede and walk all the way to Ballintoy – in my opinion it’s the best way to enjoy the amazing scenery.
Do you have any special memories of working at Carrick-a-Rede?
Yes, about a year ago I was recognised for good customer service. I received an email from a bus driver who I had greeted the previous day to say that he was impressed by my local charm, that I was incredibly friendly, and that it was comforting to know that local special places are in good hands. I sat back and reflected on the importance of the work we do here and felt so happy that it hasn’t gone unnoticed. I appreciated the gentleman making the time to send us the message and give that praise - it gave me a spring in my step.