An international Celtic Routes project that brings together local authorities in Wicklow, Wexford and Waterford with colleagues in Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion in Wales has been launched.
The Celtic Routes project aims to encourage visitors to explore new areas of South East Ireland and West Wales en route to their final tourist destination. It hopes to transform less well-known areas from transit zones to new touring sites, increasing the time visitors spend in these regions and capitalising on the opportunities to boost local economies.
The project has been developed through customer research, trade events and workshops as well as cross border visits by businesses in Ireland and Wales to bring together expertise and ideas. The objective is to increase the visitor appeal of the targeted areas, including through the development of new trails linking local culture, heritage and the natural environment. The Celtic Routes project will run until December 2020.
The launch in the Riverside Park Hotel, Enniscorthy, Co Wexford, was attended by representatives from the three Irish local authorities along with the Welsh Councils as well as TDs, Councillors, business, tourism and other representatives.
The Cathaoirleach of Wexford County Council (lead authority for the project in Ireland), Cllr Michael Sheehan, said: “The project will focus on a tailored and targeted marketing and promotional campaign to entice our main markets and visitor profile to ‘Discover Your Celtic Routes’.”
The underlying aim of the Celtic Routes project is to convert potential visitors transiting through our cities into staying visitors. Another objective is to increase sustainable economic developments by maximising visitor spend, income retention, adding value to the combined tourism offerings within the region through a tailored marketing and promotional campaign for visitors and tourism providers, supported by the three local authorities.
Frank Curran, Chief Executive, Wicklow County Council, said funding of €1.9 million for the Celtic Routes project was provided under the European Territorial Co-Operation Programme – known as Interreg or the Ireland/Wales Fund. This funding will not be affected by Brexit. “This project is directed by co-operation – between the project partners, between local authorities and State agencies, and with all tourism providers – from glamping and camping, dining and dancing, experiences and escapades.”
Further information can be found on: www.celticroutes.irish