19 September 2018
By Bryan Smyth
Fine Gael Cork Senator, Tim Lombard has welcomed the allocation of €69,000 for rural recreation projects in West Cork under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme
West Cork has been allocated € 69,000 for rural recreation projects, which is extremely welcome and will help to boost tourism here in West Cork and in the surrounding region.
“This funding is part of €1.8 million in funding for 128 projects nationally under Measure 1 of the 2018 Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme, announced by my colleague Michael Ring, Minister for Rural and Community Development,” Senator, Tim Lombard said.
The Scheme is part of the Government’s Action Plan for Rural Development and provides funding for the development and maintenance of outdoor amenities such as greenways, blueways and other trails.
The grants being awarded today relate to small local projects, with funding of up to €20,000 being provided for maintenance.
West Cork projects receiving grants include Clonakilty, Goleen Village, Union Hall, The Seven Heads Walks, Bantry and Killbrittian
“Recreational tourism is growing year on year and so it is crucial we continue to improve facilities and encourage more visitors. Figures from Fáilte Ireland show that the hiking and cycling tourism markets are worth approximately €1.2 billion to the Irish economy.
“Aside from the obvious tourism benefits, it’s also hugely important that we maintain and develop our outdoor infrastructure to encourage everyone to keep fit and live a healthy active lifestyle.
“These projects will enhance existing recreational facilities for the benefit of the communities who use them every day, and also for the many tourists who enjoy visiting our rural areas.
“The scheme will primarily be run by Local Development Companies, Local Authorities and State Agencies, and funding will be provided to a maximum of 80% of total project cost, with the balance to be provided from other sources,” Senator, Tim Lombard said.
Minister Michael Ring said: “Recreational tourism is a growing sector in Ireland’s tourism offering, and we have seen an increase in the number of Irish and overseas visitors enjoying the many greenways, blueways and walking trails which have been developed around the country in the last few years.”