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€25 million Greencastle Harbour Breakwater Offically Opened

3rd May 2024
The new Greencastle Harbour breakwater
The new Greencastle Harbour breakwater Credit: Brendan Diver

The community of Greencastle in County Donegal, Ireland, has celebrated the official opening of the Greencastle Harbour Breakwater. The breakwater, which measures 270 metres, is expected to improve the safety and effectiveness of the harbour for all users, including tourism and leisure users availing of pontoon facilities. 

The breakwater project was funded by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, which provided a total of €22m over two phases. The concluding phase, through the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine’s Brexit Adjustment Local Authority Marine Infrastructure (BALAMI) Scheme 2022-2023, provided funding of €15.5m, of which €14.38m was secured from the Brexit Adjustment Reserve. The Breakwater project was the single largest beneficiary under the BALAMI Scheme and was considered the Scheme’s flagship project.

The Greencastle community is deeply embedded in the fishing industry and the marine industry in general, with almost 200 people directly or indirectly employed. The town is a significant white fish port in Ireland and is also home to a large inshore fleet mainly engaged in shellfish and crab, making it a key town in Ireland’s seafood sector. Greencastle has significant fishing support services, including fish processing, marine engineering, boat building, and net making.

Marine Minister Charlie McConalogue cutting the ribbon with DCC staff, elected representatives, contractors and Greencastle Harbour Staff on the new Greencastle breakwater Photo: Brendan DiverMarine Minister Charlie McConalogue cutting the ribbon with DCC staff, elected representatives, contractors and Greencastle Harbour Staff on the new Greencastle breakwater Photo: Brendan Diver

Speaking at the event, Marine Minister Charlie McConalogue said: “Greencastle is an important gateway harbour to the Northwest Region. The breakwater is vital for the growth and sustainability of this harbour and, furthermore, vital for the growth and sustainability of the Inishowen Peninsula.”

The Minister also acknowledged those involved in delivering the project, commending the standard and efficiency of the work completed by the principal contractor, Stephen McCormick of Foyle & Marine Dredging Ltd, who had to contend with challenging tidal currents for the duration of the project. He also commended the commitment of Donegal County Council, who managed and delivered this project with project consultants Doran Consulting.

Leas-Chathaoirleach of Donegal County Council, Cllr Gerry McMonagle, thanked all involved and paid tribute to the work undertaken. Speaking at the event, he said: “The investment made by Minister Charlie McConalogue in Greencastle is one of over 25 investments made by the Minister and the Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine in our piers and harbours right around our county’s 1,100km of coastline. This coupled with co-funding of €3M from the Council will support our coastal and fishing communities and enable them to take advantage of new opportunities as they arise.”

The Scheme was designed to address the impacts of Brexit on the seafood sector by supporting economic sectors, businesses, and local communities and to support job creation and protection and facilitate diversification of economic opportunities. To date, the Scheme has provided funding of over €38.45m to support the delivery of 149 capital projects around the Irish coast.

After unveiling the plaque with Leas Chathaoirleach McMonagle, Minister McConalogue concluded by saying: “The distribution of Brexit Adjustment Reserve funds has enhanced, upgraded, modernised and developed Ireland’s publicly owned coastal and marine infrastructure. Ultimately, I am excited to see what the future holds for local businesses and the local community.”

Published in Irish Ports Team

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