Members of the local business community and tourism providers were invited to a joint networking event organised by Mullingar Chamber of Commerce and Co Westmeath Tourism Ltd recently. The tourism themed event was held at the new indoor leisure facility Rock ‘n’ Bowl, Lynn Road Mullingar.
Attendees were welcomed by Martha Clancy of Mullingar Chamber of Commerce.
Rhona Rogers, Co Westmeath Tourism Ltd gave a presentation on the importance of being a part of the tourism industry and encouraged businesses to work together in this difficult climate. “Tourism makes a significant contribution to the local economy - €36 million was spent here in the county by overseas visitors in 2008.” said Ms Rogers. She went on to acknowledge that visitor numbers had decreased last year, but pointed out the allocation for tourism in the last budget had increased which is a positive sign. She encouraged businesses to participate in events happening locally such as the forthcoming St Patrick’s Day Parade and Easter Eggstravaganza and gain some business from them. She also highlighted the upcoming Springclean Westmeath seminar taking place on Thursday March 11 at Belvedere House, Mullingar which aims to support Tidy Towns and encourage more people to get involved.
Guest speaker, Bartle D’Arcy, general manager Belvedere House, Gardens and Park presented the range of events for the coming months taking place at Belvedere and urged local businesses to make the most of large events such as The Self Sufficiency Show in April, Midlands Home and Garden Show, and Life Music Festival in June and sporting events such as the upcoming Jealous Wall Duathlon and Fighting Cancer Triathlon, all of which will attract both national and international visitors. The hosting of these events in Mullingar is good news for the accommodation sector, retail premises and many other local service providers. He advised that as a venue Belvedere is open to local businesses to showcase any new products or services in the area.
Speaking after the event Chamber President Paul O Brennan commented “Tonight’s joint networking event between Mullingar Chamber and Westmeath Tourism Ltd shows the working relationship that has been built up between the two organizations. As mentioned by Rhona Rogers it is important that we work together in these times and we will endeavor to support the important role that Westmeath Tourism Ltd plays in enhancing local tourism”.