Galway receives €150k boost for outdoor recreation amenities

Galway Daily news Funding boost for walking and cycling in Galway's forests

People who enjoy the incredible outdoors of the west of Ireland will be glad to hear that almost €150,000 in funding has been allocated for outdoors recreation projects in Galway.

The Department of Rural and Community Development has allocated funding totalling €146,220 towards eight projects in Galway.

The funding comes under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme, which supports the development, promotion and maintenance of outdoor amenities such as trails, walkways, cycleways, and blueways.

In Galway Forum has been allocated €20,000 for upgrades to the Binn Shleibhe Loop hill walk at Cornamona.

Two separate grants of €20,000 each have been made for the Lismany-Kylemore Trail and Boardwalk at Lismany Kylemore Bog, Laurencetown, Ballinasloe.

The County Council will spend €20,000 replacing and upgrading the boardwalk and viewing platform, and the same amount again on a trail upgrade.

Comhair na nOilean has received funding for two projects. Out and About on the Offshore Islands aims to promote Ireland’s offshore islands, with €19,935 awarded for the project.

And the group will also receive €12,600 for promotion and maintenance of the looped walks and blueways on Inishbofin.

The Clonbur Walking and Bicycle Trails will benefit from €18,000 for trail maintenance. The same amount has been allocated for upgrades to the bog road and carpark at the Glenamaddy Frass Cloncoon Bog Looped Walks.

Lastly, Phase 1 of the Aughrim Forest Trail Project at Ballygar has been allocated €17,685.

The Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme is administered by the Department of Rural and Community Development. The projects are co-funded by the Department and Fáilte Ireland.

These projects fall under Measure 1 of the scheme, targeting small local projects. Minister Heather Humphreys announced almost €3.2 million in funding for 173 Measure 1 projects on Monday.

“The last year has demonstrated more than ever the importance of outdoor amenities for our physical and mental wellbeing,” Minister Humphreys said.

“There has been a notable increase in the number of people using our walking trails, cycleways, parks and other resources to exercise and keep fit, while respecting the guidelines on social distancing during the COVID-19 crisis.”

The scheme, which began in 2016, is now “proving its worth” as more and more people make use of the new and improved outdoor facilities which have received investment under it.

“These facilities will represent a tremendous long-term asset for rural communities and visitors alike into the future.”