Harnessing of Natural Resources (Harnessing of Natura..)
Harnessing of Natural Resources
Start date: Mar 31, 2011,
End date: Jun 29, 2014
Rural regeneration through the harnessing of natural resources and under-utilised assets for economic and social gain. The proposal focuses on the natural beauty and resources of West Cavan, West Fermanagh and East Leitrim and harnesses them to act as a catalyst for rural regeneration. This area has been previously identified as a cohesive unit in need of regeneration. This will be achieved through investment in a range of complimentary tourism, enterprise and social amenity infrastructure and joint marketing initiatives. Achievements: This project is focused on rural regeneration through the harnessing of natural resources and under-utilised assets for economic and social gain. Focusing on the natural beauty and resources of West Cavan, West Fermanagh and North/East Leitrim, it will harness these resources to then act as a catalyst for rural regeneration. This area has been previously identified as a cohesive unit in need of regeneration. This will be achieved through investment in a range of complementary tourism, enterprise and social amenity infrastructure and joint marketing initiatives.The Key Aims and objectives of the HNR Project are:· To harness the eco/nature based tourism potential of the region and foster cross border economic development· To increase visitor numbers· To provide opportunities for job creation and income generation within the project area and act as a catalyst for private sector investment· To ensure a long-term strategic approach is taken to investing for the future· To ensure that an area based, cross border approach is taken to provide a full complement of tourist products, services, amenities and enterprise development· To continue to work with communities to provide the building blocks for sustainable social, community and economic development and maximise the potential for communities working on a cross border basis.The ethos of the HNR Project is based on cross border collaboration and as the project progresses; the relationship between all those involved continues to grow. Relationships beyond that of the partners have developed because of the work being done through this project, not just on a cross border basis but on a cross county and cross organisation basis as well.For example:-· Two projects that were, initially, completely separate have now joined to become one project. The Car and Motorcycling Touring Routes in County Leitrim and the Open Country Tours in County Fermanagh have amalgamated. These tours will now cover County Fermanagh, County Leitrim and County Cavan. This has been achieved through the Tourism Officers in the two counties pooling their resources to make the most of the projects and the budget.· The completion of the first project, the new all-weather recreational facility, in Drumshanbo has been a huge success with the local and outlying communities. This new facility has helped develop relationships between the community group running the facility and the local hotel in that groups staying in the hotel are using the facility. One such group was a youth group from East Belfast.· The work carried out by Inland Fisheries Ireland at Acres Lake in Drumshanbo has resulted in additional work being done in the area by Leitrim County Council and Waterways Ireland. Waterways Ireland has upgraded their moorings at the site and Leitrim County Council is adding pathways that will give the fishermen easier access further along the lake.· The Irish Wheelchair Association (IWA) is delighted with the new accessible fishing facility at Lough Doon, County Leitrim (Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) Project). This is the only specific accessible amenity for Trout angling in north Leitrim. This project has strengthened the relationship between IFI and IWA.· Killykeen Cycle Trail is in the centre of Killykeen Forest, an amenity owned and run by Coillte Teoranta in County Cavan. Because of the funding received through the HNR Project and the upgrading of this cycle/walkway, Coillte and Cavan County Council joined resources and funded the upgrading of the drive into the forest. This has resulted in over one mile of roadway into the forest now being more accessible. Once again the HNR Project resulted in collaboration of a number of organisations to improve the area.The Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark (MACGG) is at the heart of this project and the new facilities at the Visitor Centre, along with the improvements to the outlying areas, has complimented and updated the tourism product. Visitors to MACGG can now expect an enhanced experience throughout the Global Geopark. MACGG is the first trans-national Geopark in the world and the people in the border counties of Cavan and Fermanagh have been working together on this for over 6 years. The HNR Project has reinforced the relationship between these two counties as they continue to work together for the betterment of the area.The HNR Project is achieving a very positive impact on the border counties of Fermanagh, Cavan and Leitrim. As stated in the section above, already established relationships are being improved and this is clear from the continued collaboration between County Cavan and County Fermanagh as they take the Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark to another level.Cavan and Fermanagh will continue to work together when the HNR Project closes as they intend to keep their status as a trans-national Geopark. Already meetings have taken place with regard to accessing upcoming funding streams. It is highly unlikely that these two counties would have collaborated without EU funding as neither organisation had the budget to upgrade and extend the Geopark.The interaction of national agencies e.g. Coillte Teoranta and Inland Fisheries Ireland, with local bodies, has created an enhanced rapport and collaboration which has flourished as a direct result of working together on HNR.
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