€200,000 funding under the Rural Development Programme sanctioned to Fota Wildlife Park, Co. Cork, to construct a new visitor attraction and conservation centre.
Phil Hogan, T.D., Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government announced today (26 October, 2012) that he has given sanction to South & East Cork Area Development to approve funding of €200,000 to Fota Wildlife Park to construct a new visitor attraction and conservation centre at Fota, Co. Cork.
This funding, provided under the Encouragement of Tourism Activities measure of the Rural Development Programme 2007-2013, will aid the Park’s conservation work, create additional learning opportunities for visitors and provide an indoor viewing and entertainment area for visitors to the Park. Unlike the existing unique open nature of the Wildlife Park, this proposed facility will provide the public with access to a series of additional indoor areas and will assist with the growth of visitor numbers outside the peak tourist summer season.
Announcing the funding Minister Hogan said:
‘’With an estimated total project cost of €627,000, this is a significant investment for Fota Wildlife Park, which is already a major tourist attraction. This investment will make the Park more of an ‘’all weather’’ attraction and assist with extending the visitor season into the winter months. This will in turn benefit hotels and other tourism and leisure facilities in the area.’’
The LEADER elements of the Rural Development Programme currently offer, and will continue to offer, significant financial resources to communities all over Ireland. With a budget of €96 million for 2012, it is critically important that communities continue to come up with ideas that will reinvigorate their localities and avail of the resources available to develop all aspects of their communities into the future.
The Minister added, ‘’This project will now go back to the Board of South & East Cork Area Development Ltd. for final approval. This is in line with the EU’s ‘’bottom-up’’ approach to rural development.’’