Two Roscommon angling projects and one in Athlone have been awarded over €250,000 by the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs as part of the Government’s programme to support rural development.
Picture Credit: Laurel Lodged – Own work, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10234762
Inland Fisheries Ireland says the investment in rural angling is crucial in order to realise the benefits which can accrue from the natural fisheries resource. In 2015, Ireland attracted 163,000 overseas visitors who fished with a further 273,000 domestic anglers in the country. The sector contributes €836 million to the Irish economy and supports over 11,000 jobs, often in rural and peripheral communities.
€89,230 has been allocated for Accessible Angling on the Suck Valley Way at Donamon and Kilconnell. The work will provide a new match angling stretch to provide a further space for international competitions close to the current wheelchair facility.
€103,100 will go towards the upgrading of facilities at The Mudflats, Elphin Road, Cortober (Carrick On Shannon). This will include provision of floating fish stands for angling, upgrade of facilities including toilets, roadway, carpark areas, signage and fencing.
Meanwhile, €73,000 has been allocated for the maintenance of Angling Facilities at ‘The Meadows’, Athlone, Co. Westmeath. This will enable improvements to be made to the existing infrastructure in order to support river bank angling for major international match events.
Minister Denis Naughten has welcomed the allocation stating
“This investment will help to support the development of angling tourism in the area”. The projects in Roscommon, Galway and the midland counties include river bank restoration, a fishery recreation hub, access for coarse angling and fishing points (fishing stands, jetties, boat slips, car parking) which will allow for international match events and upgrade of existing disabled angling facility to include attractive, accessible lakeside and river bank walks.
“The investment is as a result of plans developed by Inland Fisheries Ireland under the responsibility of my Department, which have been funded by Minister Heather Humphreys in the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs,” added Minister Naughten.
Michael Fitzmaurice TD also welcomed the news, adding
“I would hope that these monies would be spent with a view to increasing tourism in the areas concerned and that a recognition would also be made of local communities in the area that may be affected by winter flooding as a result of any work carried out.
Deputy Fitzmaurice said that he will “also be putting pressure on the Minister and the relevant agencies to support the funding of Lakeland areas for additional fishing and tourism projects into the future.”
It is hoped that other Roscommon angling projects will benefit from future tranches of the scheme.