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Minister Humphreys announces €926,515 Outdoor Recreation Funding Boost for Waterford

Dunmore East Coastal walk

Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, has today announced €16.1 million nationally to support 69 Outdoor Recreation projects. Under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme (ORIS) 2023 funding of €926,515 has been announced for four projects in County Waterford giving a further boost to outdoor recreation and local communities in the county.

The implementation of the ORIS scheme is aligned with the objectives of ‘Embracing Ireland’s Outdoors – National Outdoor Recreation Strategy 2023 to 2027’.  Projects funded under the ORIS scheme are delivered by Local Authorities and other key stakeholders.  Waterford City and County Council will deliver the latest four projects being funded by this announcement in collaboration with local communities as well as other state agencies and partners.

ORIS provides funding for the development of new outdoor recreational infrastructure.  It also provides support for the necessary repair, maintenance, enhancement or promotion of existing outdoor recreational infrastructure in rural areas across Ireland.  The scheme supports outdoor recreation activities such as walking, trekking, cycling, kayaking and hiking.  It helps to make use of the resources of the countryside that contribute to healthy active lifestyles, and it supports the economic and tourism potential of the area for both local communities and tourist visitors alike.

Today’s announcement by Minister Humphreys sees funding being allocated under ORIS Measures 2 and 3 for the following projects:

  • Crough Wood Walk – Embankment stabilization project: €175,505 in ORIS funding
  • Dunmore East Coastal Walk – Upgrade of Steps at Portally Cove: €108,000 in ORIS funding
  • Benvoy Beach – Upgrade of existing access to beach: €143,010 in ORIS funding
  • Ardmore Beach – Development of 870m walkway at Ardmore Beach: €500,000 in ORIS funding.

Welcoming today’s announcement Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. Joe Conway has said, “It is wonderful to welcome today’s funding announcement under the ORIS scheme. This funding will go towards developing and enhancing some of our favourite trails right across county Waterford.  The timing of this announcement couldn’t be more fitting as it gives another boost to our outdoor recreation network right at the start of the summer season.  Waterford is very grateful of the support that it has received in recent years from the Department of Rural and Community Development in support of our key outdoor recreation amenities and other rural projects.

“I would also like to thank staff of Waterford City and County Council and, in particular, the Rural Economic Development team which works hard to continually submit quality funding applications under this and other schemes in conjunction with our communities and other stakeholders.”

This latest announcement comes after an allocation of €100,000 under the ORIS Project Development Measure in January and a further €133,857 announced in April to fund six smaller scale outdoor recreation projects here in Waterford.  The recognition of Waterford’s potential as an important outdoor recreation location by central government was further indicated last December when Waterford was selected to be one of just six counties to be part of a pilot scheme which will see the preparation of a County Outdoor Recreation Plan, a process which is currently ongoing.

For further information on Waterford’s fantastic walking, cycling and outdoor recreation opportunities visit and get out and active this summer!


 Image (Karen Dempsey)

Dunmore East Coastal Walk which has received funding under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme in order to upgrade steps at Portally Cove as part of the continuing improvement of this walking trail.

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