18th December

Shannon-Erne Blueway's 70km water trail

A 70km water trail and 17km of linear and looped walking/cycle routes from Leitrim Village to Belturbet, have opened to provide a range of recreational leisure activities. The Shannon-Erne Blueway adds to the network of Blueway trails developed by Waterways Ireland along various navigations.

Waterways Ireland Blueway

Dawn Livingstone, CEO Waterways Ireland; Cathoirleach Paddy Smith, Cavan County Council; Minister Heather Humphries; Karl Henry, broadcaster and fitness expert with members of the Ballyconnell Community

"This is a wonderful amenity which is a great addition to Cavan and Leitrim's tourism offering. The Blueways across the country is an important element of the government's tourisim strategy," remarked Heather Humphries, Minister for Regional Development, Rural Affairs, Arts and the Gaeltacht. 

This latest iniative will bring additional revenue for local  businesses and should boost local job creation, she added. 

"I would like to commend Waterways Ireland, the local authorities and the tourism agencies that have collaborated to bring this project to fruition."

Paddy Smith, Cathoirleach Cavan County Council, said the county was blessed with a network of scenic waterways that could rival any in the country.

"We are delighted to link in with Waterways Ireland and Leitrim and Erne Rivers. The opportunities for recreational activities along the Blueway are many."

The Shannon-Erne Blueway is a partnership involving Waterways Ireland; Cavan County Council; 'This is Cavan'; Canoeing Ireland; Leitrim County Council; Leitrim Tourism and Fáilte Ireland. Waterways Ireland has also developed a paddling trail from Drumshambo through Battlebridge and Leitrim Village to Carrick-on-Shannon.

The agency's chief executive, Dawn Livingstone, said that partnerhip was key to delivering the Shannon Blueway which provided "world beating" facilities and services along the navigation.

She added that the Shannon-Erne Blueway has the potential to have a very positive impact on jobs and the regional economy. Visitor numbers to the Mayo Greenway - now in its sixth year - have risen from 80,000 in 2011 to 300,000 in 2014, underpinning an addtional €5m spend in the region. 

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