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Press Release: Draft County Tourism Strategy

Priority on Support for Tourism Industry in Draft County Tourism Strategy

Support for industry and collaboration on marketing activities to achieve greater impact are some of the priorities outlined in the new Draft County Tourism Strategy. Aligned with the emerging Regional Tourism Strategy for Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands and the Westmeath County Development Plan 2021-2027, the Draft Strategy is now open for public consultation. Creating immersive and memorable visitor experiences is also a priority, along with ‘activating’ our greenways so that local businesses can leverage greater benefits from their proximity to these assets.

Following a pre-draft public consultation process in late 2021, the strategy development process was delayed in order to align with regional planning work being undertaken throughout 2022, following the extension of the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands region to cover all of County Westmeath. The new Draft Strategy takes account of the range of challenges and opportunities identified during the pre-draft consultation phase and during the subsequent consultation that took place in aligning with the emerging Regional Strategy.

“We have strong potential to grow with Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, with an excellent base of visitor services and on-brand assets already existing”, said Úna Doris, Tourism Officer for Westmeath County Council. “In addition, collaborative initiatives underway with Fáilte Ireland will have a big impact, including the Greenway Activation Programme commenced in January this year”. A number of ‘large-scale transformative projects’ are also called out in the Draft Strategy in terms of enhancing our ‘destination towns’, utilising funding schemes such as Just Transition and the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund.

Overall, the Draft County Tourism Strategy aims to guide tourism development countywide, taking account of the range of challenges and opportunities available for the County. Delivery of the Strategy will require collaboration, involving a range of stakeholders, including Westmeath County Council, Fáilte Ireland, tourism and hospitality businesses and communities countywide.

The Draft Strategy document, along with environmental screening reports are available to view on the Council’s Consultation Portal ( https://consult.westmeathcoco.ie/browse ) and submissions are invited via email to tourism@westmeathcoco.ie 


Content Last Updated/Reviewed: 10/03/2023