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Tourism action plan needs to empower communities and local authorities – Senator Reilly

1 July, 2015

Today in the Seanad Sinn Fein’s Kathryn Reilly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism, and Sport how the Tourism Action Plan will empower local communities and authorities to further develop comprehensive tourism strategies, maintain attractions and amenities and boost tourism nationwide.

Senator Reilly stated:

“A collective engagement by national and government agencies with local authorities and local representatives provides the best way forward for the tourism industry, especially in rural Ireland.” 

“In the last number of months my colleague Councillor Noel Connell got a motion passed at Cavan County Council on the need to develop and enhance the tourist potential of Lough Sheelin in County Cavan.”

 “Part of the proposal was the need for a roadmap to provide a strong framework, to which all the key stakeholders are committed, for both marketing and development of the Lough Sheelin area.” 

“Cllr. Connell outlined that the plan should be the result of extensive stakeholder consultation at community and business level and should involve both marketing and capital elements - in particular the development of the tourism infrastructure of Lough Sheelin for sightseeing, walking, cycling as well as the heritage, culture and other offerings.”

Senator Reilly concluded:

“Like my colleagues on Cavan County Council who passed this motion, I believe the development of such a plan will help develop the destination brand and visitor experience of Lough Sheelin, building on its great natural assets, in a similar manner to the investment in other key tourist attractions like Lough Derg and the Wild Atlantic Way, while supporting a sustainable regional tourism economy.”

“But we must also be proactive in fending off threats to Ireland’s tourist industry. An issue I have been continuously raising as a grave concern for the border regions is the possibility of a British exit from the EU in 2017.” 

“I feel that it is important that the national and government tourism agencies meet with local authorities and stakeholders in the border region to devise a comprehensive plan for such an event.” 

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