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Impact of the Decision To Leave the EU

It is now clear that the British people have made the choice to leave the European Union. The countr...


Minister Phil Hogan Officially Opens Cavan Burren Park & Interpretative Centre

Interreg Iva Funding Of Over €900,000 Investment In Cross Border Tourism & Recreation Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government Phil Hogan TD last Friday 9th of May officially opened Cavan Burren Park at Blacklion, Co. Cavan. Cavan Burren Park is a joint initiative between Coillte and Cavan County Council and consists of a 5km series of walking trails (including a multi-access trail) and an interpretative centre within the UNESCO designated Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark. The site is recognised to have an exceptional archaeological heritage with over 80 monuments, ancient hut sites and field systems that survive from prehistoric times.

The 124 hectare Cavan Burren Park is a cross border initiative made possible through over €900,000 in funding from the Border Uplands project which is supported by the European Union's Interreg IVA Programme, managed by the Special EU Programme Body and delivered by the Irish Central Border Area Network (ICBAN); project partners include Cavan County Council, Fermanagh District Council, Leitrim County Council and Sligo County Council. Cavan Burren Park will be jointly managed by Coillte and Cavan County Council who have been working together to deliver local tourism and recreation facilities while protecting the landscape and heritage for future generations

Minister Phil Hogan said "Cavan Burren Park and Interpretative Centre will open up this spectacular area to the public while protecting the historical infrastructure. Areas like the Global Geopark are essential in supporting tourism in rural communities and are of immense value in terms of protecting our national heritage. Increasingly partnerships are essential if we are to deliver these important projects and I commend the work of Cavan County Council and Coillte in delivering this innovative project."

A 2013 report by Goodbody Economic Consultants for Coillte & The Heritage Council estimated the public goods value of cultural heritage on the Coillte estate to be in excess of €90 million per annum. In total Coillte delivers approx. €600m in public goods annually across the country – including recreation, landscape management and biodiversity. Visits to sites such as the Cavan Burren Park and the Global Geopark are estimated to be worth almost €270million annually in rural communities nationally.

Acting Coillte Chief Executive Mr Gerry Britchfield said "Coillte is proud to be part of this flagship gateway facility. This project is an excellent example of how cooperation can deliver important public goods to broader society and leverage value of the public goods inherent in the Coillte estate for the benefit of local tourism and investment."

Cathaoirleach of Cavan County Council Val Smith said "Today we are delighted to welcome Minister Hogan and our partners to be with us as we officially open this fantastic new Park. Working together we have created a space that both protect our ancient sites and history while simultaneously generating a future through tourism and recreation."

Shane Campbell, CEO of ICBAN "Today we can all enjoy the fruits of a successful partnerships. Cavan Burren Park enhances the tourism potential of the Central Border Region and allows us through the pooling of resources, knowledge and funding to maximise our natural assets to the benefit of all."

The special EU Programmes Body is a North / South implementation Body sponsored by the Department of Finance and Personnel in Northern Ireland and the Department of Finance in Ireland. It is responsible for managing two EU structural funds Programmes PEACE III and INTERREG IV designed to enhance cross-border co-operation, promote reconciliation and create a more peaceful and prosperous society. The Programmes cooperate within a clearly defined area including Northern Ireland, the Border Region of Ireland and Western Scotland.

The INTERREG IVA Programme, funded under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), is worth €256 million and aims to address the economic and social problems which result from the existence of borders. It has two distinct priority measures to create co-operation for a more prosperous and sustainable cross-border region.

For more information on the SEUPB please visit www.seupb.eu

Coillte is Ireland's leading provider of public goods, delivering outdoor recreation, landscape management, nature conservation and archaeological heritage to a value of approx. €600m per annum according to independent research. Coillte manages 7% of the land of Ireland and employs approx. 900 people in its forestry, wood panel products manufacturing, renewable energy and other businesses.

Source: Coillte - Minister Phil Hogan Officially Opens Cavan Burren Park & Interpretative Centre