A host of business and tourism chiefs from Mayo and Manchester held an inaugural networking lunch on Thursday August 8 to celebrate the success of this year’s Manchester Mayo Gathering. The event which was held at the Ice House in Ballina attracted business and tourism representatives from all over Mayo and Manchester.
The group enjoyed a networking lunch and guest speakers included the Cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council councillor John O'Malley; Mayo County Manager Peter Hynes; the CEO of Mayo Enterprise Board Joanne Grehan and the co-director of Manchester Mayo Tourism and Business Tony Hennigan.
Mr Hennigan in his opening address remarked: “The Manchester Mayo Gathering, which has been run in conjunction with the Mayo North Gathering, has been a fantastic success in terms of the number of visitors we have attracted to the area and the revenue it has generated. Some hoteliers have already reported a 70 per cent increase and one local venue has said that he has made more in this Gathering week than he has made all year. The links between Manchester and Mayo have always been very strong, but this year’s Gathering has ensured that those links have been doubled in strength and we are determined to make sure that they are never broken. We would like to acknowledge the support of Moy Valley resources who have helped us stage this event.”
Cllr O’Malley added: “We have been delighted with the support shown to us from Manchester in the number of visitors that they have brought over. The Gathering has been a great success story and has brought back the Diaspora from all over the world.”
Joanne Grehan said: “It is great to see a business event included in this nine day celebration. I know that Martina Hughes from Mayo.ie has been working very closely with the Manchester Mayo Tourism and Business group to help develop our business and tourism links. We are delighted with the success of the 2013 Gathering, but we want this now to be just the beginning and today's inaugural to become an annual event.”
Peter Hynes in his closing address invited the group back in late September when Mayo hope to bring the Sam Maguire home.