€250m LEADER funding demonstrates Government’s commitment to Longford and Westmeath – McFadden

Fine Gael candidate for Longford-Westmeath, Cllr Gabriel McFadden, has said that both she and her colleague, Deputy James Bannon, agreed that there should be more joined up thinking between the two counties when it comes to developing the region as a tourism destination.

“I know I may be a little biased here, but we live in the most beautiful part of the country, the heart of Ireland.

“To add to the natural amenities provided by our lakess and rivers, I want to see the continued development of cycleways/walkways in Longford and Westmeath to help make the Midlands a destination to rival any in the country.

“The development of a cycleway from Athlone to Mullingar is progressing well and I expect a funding announcement shortly. Separately, a Longford-Clondra walkway/cycleway has already got a major funding boost and I am delighted work is underway.

“The tourism potential of national walking and cycling networks is well-known; for example, the Mayo Greenway is estimated to be contributing more than one million euro annually to the local economy.

“Developing such cycle routes is of major benefit to local economies and I believe more joined up thinking to promote and enhance tourism products for both counties can reap rich dividends.”