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Michelle Gildernew calls for restoration of Ulster Canal

6 March, 2006

Sinn Féin MP Michelle Gildernew has today called for the Ulster Canal to be reopened to "unlock the massive tourist potential for the border counties".

Ms Gilderenew made her comments amidst speculation that David Hanson and Eamonn O'Cuiv will discuss the reopening of the waterway at a meeting in the Navan Centre, Co Armagh today.

Speaking today Ms Gildernew said:

"Sinn Féin has consistently campaigned for the reopening of the Ulster Canal. Not only would it help link up much of Ireland through an extensive inter-connecting waterway but it would also create a tourist hub to service the increasing numbers of foreign visitors who want to sail in ours rivers and canals.

"The rejuvenation of small towns along the Shannon could be replicated right across Armagh, Monaghan Cavan and into Fermanagh if the canal were to be re-established in the near future. We only have to look at the success of the Shannon - Erne network to realize that the Ulster Canal could help unlock the massive tourist potential for border counties.

"Discussions on this issue have been ongoing for a considerable period of time and it is essential that there is no further delay or foot dragging. Therefore I would call upon Minister O‚Cuiv and Direct Rule Minister Hanson to move quickly on this important initiative." ENDS

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