18 December 2018
By Bryan Smyth
Cork County Council welcomes the allocation of €500,000 from the Department of Rural and Community Development under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme 2018 for the Youghal Eco Boardwalk. This amount is the maximum amount available under this scheme.
This funding will enable Cork County Council to continue this coastal walking route from Youghal Town Centre to Redbarn. Phase I of the project, a stretch of 378 meters, was opened in March 2012 and since then has drawn huge numbers of locals and international visitors on a daily basis to the beach throughout the year. The amenity has delivered a significant tourism and economic boost to the local economy. It is fully wheelchair accessible and has proven helpful for the elderly and those with buggies, who might have difficulty moving on the sand. It stands approximately 4 meters above the sand level.
The second phase of approx 825 meters will see the route of the walkway run from Claycastle to Red Barn, adjacent to the dunes and reed beds of Ballyvergan Marsh. The €500,000 funding from the Outdoor Recreation Scheme 2018 will allow the development of a section of phase 2 and as further funding becomes available the project will be completed to Redbarn.
The timing of the works to be undertaken with this allocation of €500,000 is currently being examined and will have due regard to ecological and other considerations. However, the Council is confident that 2019 will see the completion of a further section of this hugely popular amenity.
Mayor of the County of Cork, Councillor Patrick Gerard Murphy has expressed delight with the project, noting that “the Coast of County Cork is one of its greatest assets, both as a tourist offering and for the people of Cork. I’m immensely proud of the work Cork County Council has done in Youghal to improve accessibility for all comers”.
Chief Executive Tim Lucey praised the progress, stating “this is a critical project for tourism and wellbeing in Youghal. Providing infrastructure like this helps us to enhance the profile of the town, making it a more attractive place to live, work and visit”.
This allocation to the Boardwalk Project follows on from a number of other significant projects in the Youghal area which Cork County Council is engaged with:
• IRONMAN, Ireland, Cork- Cork County Council is the host sponsor for this iconic sporting event in Youghal from 2019 to 2021.
• Town and Village Renewal 2018 – joint application from Cork County Council and Youghal4ALL to erect a statue to commemorate the making of the Moby Dick movie in Youghal with appropriate public realm.
• Progressing the development of the Midleton to Youghal Greenway to the planning process which is currently underway.
• Reopening of many of Youghals built heritage assets to the public, including Youghal Clock Tower, St Mary’s Collegiate Church (the oldest Church in Ireland still in continuous use) and works to open up the grounds of Youghal Lighthouse to the public in 2019 is ongoing.