Westmeath County Council have begun a public consultation process for the preparation of a new Tourism Strategy for the county. This new strategy will guide and inform tourism development in County Westmeath from 2021-2027.
Since the first Westmeath Tourism Strategy was launched in November 2016, many actions and initiatives have been developed and implemented for the long-term benefit of tourism in Westmeath, including Visit Westmeath promotional activities, further development of the county’s recreational infrastructure and enhancement of the visitor experience at destination towns, villages and attractions. Westmeath County Council have also been working closely with Fáilte Ireland in order to encourage a more regional spread of tourism growth in the long term. “With considerable heritage and cultural assets, a scenic and rich natural environment, vibrant towns and villages and an easily accessible location, Westmeath has great potential to benefit from tourism”, said Pat Gallagher, Chief Executive of Westmeath County Council.
Much has changed in the sector since the launch of the first strategy, including new opportunities offered though the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands brand, along with the more recent and devastating impacts arising from Covid-19.
“It’s important that the new Tourism Strategy fully reflects and responds to the range of opportunities and challenges for our county”, said Úna Doris, Tourism Officer. Members of the public are invited to make submissions and proposals which will help to shape the new Tourism Strategy. A set of ‘issues papers’ are available to view on the Council’s Consultation Portal – accessible via https://consult.westmeathcoco.ie/. These aim to set the context and framework for a comprehensive public consultation process.
Topics for consideration as part of the consultation process for the new Tourism Strategy are outlined in the issues papers. These include supporting the growth of the Visitor Destination Towns of Athlone and Mullingar and how to take full advantage of Fáilte Ireland’s regional experience brands: Ireland’s Ancient East and Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands. In addition, the enhancement and marketing of our visitor experiences are to be considered, particularly our greenways, heritage features and food offering.
The Council are also engaging with stakeholders, including agencies such as Fáilte Ireland and Waterways Ireland, industry representatives and relevant interest groups as part of the process. While face-to-face consultations are not possible at the moment, anyone who wishes to discuss their ideas or comments before making a written submission, will be facilitated by phone, email or online meeting.
Content Last Updated/Reviewed: 20/05/2021