Waterways Ireland welcomed members of the Destination Fermanagh Industry Group on their recent visit to the Shannon Blueway in Co Leitrim. Private and public sector members of the group visited this latest Waterways Ireland award-winning innovation and met the development and marketing teams as well as local businesses that have started up or grown around the Blueway.
Welcomed by Waterways Ireland's Regional Manager Éanna Rowe and Director of Business Development, John Boyle, the visit began with an information session in the Lough Allen Hotel. Boats provided by Leitrim Quay were used to take the group from Drumshanbo to Acres Lake, where they toured the site and the new visitor centre and then onto to Drumleague. From Drumleague the group walked, used bikes provided by local business Electric Bike Trails or stayed on board the Leitrim Quay boats all the way to Battlebridge.
In Battlebridge the group toured the lock and lock-keepers house before crossing the river to Battlebridge Glamping where they enjoyed a tour of the site and the pods and walked into Leitrim village to have lunch in The Barge.
Eddie Mc Govern, Tourism Development Officer for Fermanagh & Omagh District Council said "it gave me a totally different perspective of an area, that I thought I knew very well. It's beautiful and cycling along the canal (even in the rain) showed the potential of the area. Those electric bikes are so good ".
John Boyle Waterways Ireland, commenting on the visit said "Waterways Ireland have developed and led the Blueways initiative across our waterway network as we believe in its potential to activate significantly increased recreational and tourism use of the waterway corridors. The visit of Destination Fermanagh members is important to grow awareness of this award-winning initiative, and to provide a deeper understanding of how working together, a Blueways initiative on the Erne system could deliver more visitors to Fermanagh".
Progress is continuing on this collaborative approach to Blueway development on Lough Erne.