Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands an easier fit for western half of Cavan- Feeley

Fianna Fáil Councillor, John Paul Feeley has broadly welcomed the launch of the “Ireland’s Hidden Heartland’s” brand to market the central region of the country for tourism purposes. The new brand stretching from North Leitrim to Limerick includes approximately half of County Cavan and focuses on that part of the country influenced by the River Shannon. It is anticipated that in 2018 €2 million will be assigned to promote this new brand.
“As chairperson of the Economic SPC of Cavan County Council we have engaged on a regular basis with the tourism sector and launched a new tourism strategy for County Cavan towards the end of 2017. This week our council approved the adoption of a new angling strategy. These are all significant developments for County Cavan. One anomaly in the tourism marketing of the region was finding parts of the county as far west as Blacklion included in Ireland’s Ancient East.”
“I was very pleased that Cavan Burren Park had been recognised as a flagship site within Ireland Ancient East as indeed had the Cavan County Museum at Ballyjamesduff. However from a practical perspective it was not realistic to anticipate that a tourist would travel from the Viking City of Waterford also part of Ireland Ancient East to a site on the Fermanagh Leitrim border such as Cavan Burren Park.’
“I believe this new designation recognises the significance of the Shannon-Erne Waterway, the River Shannon, the source of which is in Glangevlin and is itself one of the key sites in the Marble Arch Global Geopark along with the Cavan Burren Park and the sister sites focusing around Cuilcagh Mountain and the other sites throughout Cavan and Fermanagh which flow naturally from that.”
‘I know the Cavan County Council have prepared substantial plans for significant investment in the various sites in County Cavan which form part of the UNESCO Marble Arch Global Geopark. These plans would take up the entire budget allocated by Failte Ireland for promoting this new brand. If Government are serious about promoting this new region then it must be matched with very significant funding to ensure that sites such as Cavan Burren Park, the Shannon Pot, Killykeen as the flagship sites in our county must be the recipient of significant, frontloaded government investment.’
‘The test for this new brand is not the glossy launch in Athlone, it will be whether there is follow through in investment in the area from Blacklion at its very northern most and on from there.’ concluded Feeley.