Five Mayo walking trails to be enhanced under Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme

On the bike: Minister Michael Ring with Oral Carroll and students from Scoil Raifteirí earlier this year at the launch of 78 outdoor recreation projects. Photo Michael McLaughlin.

On the bike: Minister Michael Ring with Oral Carroll and students from Scoil Raifteirí earlier this year at the launch of 78 outdoor recreation projects. Photo Michael McLaughlin.

The Minister for Rural and Community Development, Michael Ring, TD, announced that he has approved over €100,000 to invest in the enhancement of five walking trails (€20,000 each ) in Mayo under Measure 1 of his Department’s Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme (2019 ).

The scheme is part of the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 Rural Regeneration and Development programme, and provides funding for the development and maintenance of outdoor amenities such as trails, walkways, cycleways and blueways.

The funding will support small-scale local projects with funding of up to €20,000 for investment in outdoor recreation facilities and the promotion of existing recreation infrastructure.

Prior to today’s allocation, Minister Ring has allocated more than €2.6 million in the last two years to walking and cycling trails in Mayo through the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme. Further funding in relation to mid-sized and larger projects under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme will be announced in the new year.

The following Mayo trails have received funding: (1 ) Táin Bó Fliodhaise - Cattle Raid of Mayo Trail (Munhin, Glencastle and Ceathrú Thaidhg ), to carry out improvements to the existing Turas na Gaeltachta- Táin Bó Fliodhaise sites at Munhin, Glencastle and Ceathrú Thaidhg. Also to develop specific branding and studies for developments on the wider Táin Bó Fliodhaise project.

(2 ) Killeen Walks. The Killeen Walks offers two looped walking trails ranging in distance of 6.5 km and 7.2 km. The route offers a mix of terrain to include country lanes and tracks. The trails are strategically located along the Wild Atlantic Way. The funding sought is for the design of a pedestrian footbridge along the route. The work will involve site investigations and to engage with structural engineers for a specialised design for a new footbridge.

(3 ) Pullathomas Loop Walk. The Pullathomas Loop Walk is a 7km walking trail that extends around the village of Pullathomas. The route offers a mix of terrain to include country lanes, tracks and footpaths. The trail is strategically located along the Wild Atlantic Way and offers spectacular views of north Mayo in this Gaeltacht area. The plan is to carry out improvements and much needed upgrade work to a section of the track and to the trailhead, installation of directional signage is also required.

(4 ) Brackloon Woods. Brackloon Woods are located approximately 6km from Westport just off the Leenane Road. The funding will support the development of a new access/entry point into Brackloon Woods. This will also act as an access point to both the Western Way and the Croagh Patrick Heritage Trail, both of which traverse through the grounds of Brackloon Woods. New directional signage will also be installed.

(5 ) Nephin Trailhead, Lahardane. To develop a carpark and information area at the start of the new low level walk which has recently been developed at the foothills of Nephin forest ground. The plans are to surface dress the existing carpark area along with the provision of fencing, seating and an information area. This was a collaboration project between the local community group, Coillte and Mayo County Council. The walk has become hugely popular with locals and with with other users/hikers looking to hike to the summit of Nephin

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