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Bilberry to City Centre Waterford Greenway Link officially opened

The Bilberry to City Centre Waterford Greenway Link was officially opened today (Friday June 2nd), by the Mayor of Waterford City and County Cllr. John O’Leary.

The new section, funded to the tune of €12.5 million by the National Transport Authority (NTA) and delivered and managed by Waterford City and County Council, links the Waterford Greenway from the Bilberry car park to the Clock Tower in the City Centre, as well as connecting it to the Waterford sustainable transport bridge due to be delivered in 2025 and the start of the Waterford to New Ross Greenway.

Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. John O’Leary said, “We are delighted to officially open this section of Waterford Greenway.  The new link section will open up the route allowing walkers, runners, and cyclists to continue their shared journey right into the heart of the city centre and beyond.”

“It’s significant to note that this link will give users access to the Southeast and Southern Greenway networks and reach locations such as New Ross, Youghal and Mallow.

“Waterford is experiencing a renaissance.  With work commenced on the North Quays SDZ an exciting opportunity lies in store for the city, county, and region as a whole.

“The city’s economic, commercial and tourism offerings will undoubtedly be enhanced, and the addition of the Bilberry City Centre Waterford link showcases the very best of the county as it traverses from countryside to city centre.”

Minister for Environment, Climate, Communications and Transport, Eamon Ryan TD, said, “The Bilberry to City Centre Waterford link, which forms part of the Cork to Waterford Intra-Urban Demonstrator Pathfinder project will be extremely valuable to the local area as well as those travelling from further afield, and will for first time, create a seamless cycle link between two Irish cities.

“All of the best cities and towns in the world are moving this way – to re-imagine and re-design their centres as active travel hubs, by reallocating road space and by putting in infrastructure which makes it safer and easier for people to walk, cycle or wheel. This new stretch of the Waterford Greenway extends it right into the heart of the city and long the historic quays. This will be good for visitors but particularly good for local people and businesses, making it easier for school children to get to and from schools safely, or allowing people to stroll or bike into this beautiful medieval city centre to shop, and in time, to continue on by public transport, or by connecting greenways to other towns in the region.”

The Active Travel project comprised of the construction of 2.1km long and 4m wide cycle and pedestrian shared surface from the Greenway car park at Bilberry, along Bilberry Road, Grattan Quay, and Merchants Quay to the South Quay Plaza at the Clock Tower.

The new section includes 210 metres of two new cantilevered boardwalks over the River Suir at Grattan Quay and Bilberry Rock, along with a full overhaul of the pedestrian routes and traffic signals at the junction of Rice Bridge, while existing facilities on Grattan Quay and Merchants Quay car park see the addition of high-quality surface finishes, landscaping, and street furniture.

The construction was undertaken by John Cradock Construction Ltd. and comprised of almost 65,000 hours worked on the project, with 250 employed on the construction phase at various times across the project.

The sustainable elements of the project are quite prominent as the newly installed segregated urban shared surface has been finished with energy efficient LED lighting, along with approximately 350 trees and 900m2 of wildflower beds planted. 8,000 tonnes of concrete, tarmacadam, and excavated rock, which would ordinarily go to landfill, have been recycled for reuse on the site.

Anne Graham, Chief Executive of the National Transport Authority added, “The National Transport Authority is delighted to have been able to work with Waterford City and County Council on this impressive addition to its hugely successful Greenway.

“This new link is one of 35 projects across Waterford benefitting from €11 million of Active Travel funding allocated by the NTA in 2023.  The funding is aimed towards building a comprehensive active travel network that can be enjoyed by all.”

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Images – free to use: Patrick Browne

Extensive Community Engagement Underway for Proposed Dungarvan to Mallow Greenway

Senior members of the proposed Dungarvan to Mallow Greenway project team provide update on local community engagement activities

The Dungarvan to Mallow Greenway, as proposed, is a 74-kilometre long walking and cycling path that would connect Dungarvan, County Waterford to Mallow, County Cork, linking the towns and villages of Cappoquin, Lismore, Ballyduff, Clondulane, Fermoy, Ballyhooly, and Killavullen.

The project team from Waterford City and County Council and Cork County Council estimate that approximately 140 landowners may be directly impacted by the emerging preferred route, and consultation is currently underway with these individuals, as well as a further approximately 100 landowners whose land is adjacent to the emerging preferred route.

The project team is following the Code of Best Practice for National and Regional Greenways and appointed a Project Liaison Officer to commence individual landowner consultations. At this stage, the Project Liaison Officer has visited over 170 individual private households – primarily located between Mallow and Lismore – and met with the landowners and their families.  Also, a meeting recently took place with the Irish Farmers’ Association, or IFA, representatives to share the progress of the project to date, and to listen to the concerns of their members.

This landowner engagement is in addition to the initial public consultation undertaken back in 2022 and the key themes emerging at that time included safety and security, environment concerns, and the potential impacts on local residents, farms and businesses.

Welcoming the engagement process to date, Sean Callery, Senior Engineer, Cork County Council, “The project group is very grateful to landowners locally for making themselves available and for engaging so robustly. The Project Liaison Officer has received a lot of valuable feedback and all of this will be analysed over the coming months. The route will be refined where possible in order to minimise farm severance and accommodate landowners, wherever feasible.”

Senior Engineer Waterford City and County Council, Sean Dobbs said, “This proposed new greenway would create a fun, healthy experience for local people and tourists alike, one that supports the economic development of the region and the wellbeing of our citizens. It is very encouraging to see the community engage at this level.”

The team expects to visit and meet with the remaining 70 landowners, most of whom are located between Lismore and Dungarvan, throughout the month of June. All feedback will be reviewed and refinements to the route will be considered and analysed by the project team. A further round of public consultation is expected to take place towards the end of the year.

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Applications now open for Casual Trading Licence at Durrow Station, Waterford Greenway – Summer Season 2023

Waterford City & County Council has initiated an application process for one casual trading licence at Durrow Station, Waterford Greenway for the summer season of 2022 from 1st June to 31st August 2023.

Intending applicants are asked to refer to the application guidelines, terms and conditions in advance of completing an application at Durrow station casual trading.

Applicants will also need to ensure they are familiar with the 2021 Waterford City & County Council Casual Trading Bye Laws.

Applications must be submitted via Waterford City & County Council’s online application system at https://submit.link/1O6

Closing date for applications is 17:00 hrs Monday 29th May 2023. Applications received after this time and date will NOT be considered as part of this application process.

The successful applicant must be ready to commence trading at the specified location on 2nd June 2023.

For enquiries and further information email: greenway@waterfordcouncil.ie

Applications now open for Casual Trading Licence at Durrow Station, Waterford Greenway – Summer Season 2023

Waterford City & County Council has initiated an application process for one casual trading licence at Durrow Station, Waterford Greenway for the summer season of 2022 from 1st June to 31st August 2023.

Intending applicants are asked to refer to the application guidelines, terms and conditions in advance of completing an application at Durrow station casual trading.

Applicants will also need to ensure they are familiar with the 2021 Waterford City & County Council Casual Trading Bye Laws.

Applications must be submitted via Waterford City & County Council’s online application system at https://submit.link/1O6

Closing date for applications is 17:00 hrs Monday 29th May 2023. Applications received after this time and date will NOT be considered as part of this application process.

The successful applicant must be ready to commence trading at the specified location on 2nd June 2023.

For enquiries and further information email: greenway@waterfordcouncil.ie

Proposed Development at Ballynacourty Greenway

Notice is hereby given that Waterford City and County Council propose to carry out the following development at Ballynacourty Greenway.

In accordance with Part 8, Article 81 of the above Regulations, Waterford City & County Council hereby gives notice of proposals to carry out the works associated with above development in the townlands of Kilgrovan and Ballynacourty, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford.

The objective of the works is to upgrade the section of the Greenway from Clonea Road to Ballinclamper to a Greenway standard.

The development will consist of:

  • Improvement works to the existing pathway by widening the path and by carrying out some drainage works along the route:
    – Widening southern section between L7010 Ballinard and L7011 Ballinclamper Road adistance of approx. 450 metres to 3 metres wide.
    – Widening the northern section between L7011 Ballinclamper Road and L3011 Clonea
    Strand Road a distance of approx. 630 metres to 2.5 metres wide.
  • Provision of a pedestrian crossing on the L-7011 at Ballinclamper and improvement of the sight lines at this crossing.
  • Provision of one agricultural crossing point along the route which will be formed by way of gated access.
  • Connecting two of the main car parks serving the Clonea Strand Blue Flag Beach at
    Ballinclamper and at Ballinard with a new pathway between the Greenway and the car park.
  • Addition of a new picnic and amenity area at Ballinclamper car park on Council owned lands which will include some surfacing works.
  • Enhancement of the existing amenity area/bike parking at Ballinard car park.

Plans and particulars of the proposed development will be available for inspection at Waterford City & County Council, Customer Care Desk, Civic Offices, Dungarvan, County Waterford between the hours of 9:30am to 4:00pm Monday to Friday for the period 9th of May – 6th of June 2023 inclusive (excluding Bank and Public Holidays).

Particulars of the proposed scheme will also be available to view on Waterford City & County Council’s website at http://waterfordcouncil.ie/projects/public-consultations/index.htm

The proposed development has undergone Appropriate Assessment Screening under the Habitats Directive (92/43/EEC) and the Planning and Development Act 2000 as amended, and the Planning Authority has determined that a Stage 2 Appropriate Assessment is not required in this instance. In addition, the proposal has also undergone screening for Environmental Impact Assessment under the EIA Directive 2014/52/EU (and the relevant provisions of the Planning and Development Act, as amended), and the Planning Authority has determined that there will be no likelihood of significant effects on the environment arising from the proposed development and, therefore, an Environmental Impact Assessment is not required.

In accordance with Article 120 (3) of the Planning & Development Regulations (as amended), any person may, within 4 weeks from the date of this notice, apply to An Bord Pleanála for a screening determination as to whether the proposed development would be likely to have significant effects on the environment.

An Ecological Impact Assessment (EcIA) has been carried out to assess any potential adverse impacts to the local ecology. The EcIA report is appended to the Part VIII Application.

Submissions or observations with respect to the proposed development, dealing with the proper planning and sustainable development of the area shall be made in writing to:
the Director of Economic Development, Waterford City & County Council,
35 The Mall, Waterford
or by emailing projectsteam@waterfordcouncil.ie on or before 4pm on 20th of June 2023 and should be clearly marked Development at Ballynacourty Greenway.

All comments, including names of those making comments, submitted to the Council in regard of this scheme will form part of the statutorily required report to be presented at a meeting of the elected members. Accordingly, they will also be included in the minutes of that meeting and may appear in the public domain.

Waterford City & County Council is subject to the provision of Freedom of Information (FOI Acts 1997 and 2014) and the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2013.

Reminder: Ballinacourty Greenway Spur Improvement Works – Public Meeting

Waterford City and County Council is organising a public information event regarding the Ballinacourty Greenway Spur widening and improvement project. This is a ‘drop in’ event which will take place in St. Laurence’s Community Hall, Ballinroad, X35 KT53 on Tuesday 9th May between 5 and 8 p.m.

Interested parties are invited to attend to meet and discuss the current proposals with members of the project team and to view project plans and particulars. Those in attendance will also be advised as to how they might get involved in the Part VIII Planning process, which commences on the same date and will close for public submissions on 20th June 2023.

The proposed development will consist of:

  • Improvement works to the existing pathway by widening the path and by carrying out some drainage works along the route in the townlands of Kilgrovan and Ballynacourty, Co. Waterford:
  • Widening southern section between L7010 Ballinard and L7011 Ballinclamper Road a distance of approx. 450 metres to 3 metres wide.
  • Widening the northern section between L7011 Ballinclamper Road and L3011 Clonea Strand Road a distance of approx. 630 metres to 5 metres wide
  • Provision of a pedestrian crossing on the L-7011 at Ballinclamper and improvement of the sight lines at this crossing.
  • Provision of one agricultural crossing point along the route which will be formed by way of gated access.
  • Connecting two of the main car parks serving the Clonea Strand Blue Flag Beach at Ballinclamper and at Ballinard with a new pathway between the Greenway and the car park.
  • Addition of a new picnic and amenity area at Ballinclamper car park on Council owned lands which will include some surfacing works.
  • Enhancement of the existing amenity area/bike parking at Ballinard car park.

The proposed enhancement works are being funded under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme which is administered at national level by the Department of Rural and Community Development. The Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme 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. To date this scheme has funded numerous recreation schemes around Co. Waterford since its inception in 2017.

 

 

Ballinacourty GreenWay Spur Improvement Works- Public Meeting

Waterford City and County Council is organising a public information event regarding the Ballinacourty Greenway Spur widening and improvement project. This is a ‘drop in’ event which will take place in St. Laurence’s Community Hall, Ballinroad, X35 KT53 on Tuesday 9th May between 5 and 8 p.m. Interested parties are invited to attend to meet and discuss the current proposals with members of the project team and to view project plans and particulars. Those in attendance will also be advised as to how they might get involved in the Part VIII Planning process, which commences on the same date and will close for public submissions on 20th June 2023.

The proposed development will consist of:

  • Improvement works to the existing pathway by widening the path and by carrying out some drainage works along the route in the townlands of Kilgrovan and Ballynacourty, Co. Waterford:
  • Widening southern section between L7010 Ballinard and L7011 Ballinclamper Road a distance of approx. 450 metres to 3 metres wide.
  • Widening the northern section between L7011 Ballinclamper Road and L3011 Clonea Strand Road a distance of approx. 630 metres to 5 metres wide
  • Provision of a pedestrian crossing on the L-7011 at Ballinclamper and improvement of the sight lines at this crossing.
  • Provision of one agricultural crossing point along the route which will be formed by way of gated access.
  • Connecting two of the main car parks serving the Clonea Strand Blue Flag Beach at Ballinclamper and at Ballinard with a new pathway between the Greenway and the car park.
  • Addition of a new picnic and amenity area at Ballinclamper car park on Council owned lands which will include some surfacing works.
  • Enhancement of the existing amenity area/bike parking at Ballinard car park.

The proposed enhancement works are being funded under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme which is administered at national level by the Department of Rural and Community Development. The Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme 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. To date this scheme has funded numerous recreation schemes around Co. Waterford since its inception in 2017.

 

 

Waterford Greenway celebrates fifth birthday

Photo by Colin Shanahan – DigiCol Photography (c) 2021 – http://www.digicolphotography.com

It’s hard to believe that the much-loved Waterford Greenway has been open just five years, yet many locals will find it hard to imagine life without this award-winning trail on their doorstep. The Waterford Greenway stretches from Ireland’s Oldest City in the East of the County, through the picturesque village of Kilmacthomas to the harbour town of Dungarvan in West Waterford. Freedom, fresh-air, magnificent scenery and chance encounters are some of the highlights often mentioned by visitors to this spectacular trail in Ireland’s Ancient East.

Waterford Greenway was officially opened on March 25th 2017 by Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, Simon Coveney TD on the 50th anniversary of the last passenger train journey between Dungarvan and Waterford City. Since opening, the Waterford Greenway has attracted over 250,000 visits annually, resulting in the development of many tourism and hospitality businesses.

In five short years the Waterford Greenway has won the hearts of locals and visitors alike and celebrated a number of accolades which include; being the first Irish Greenway to receive the Green Flag Award for Parks and Green Spaces in 2020 and retain it in 2021, winning silver in the Excellence Category at the 10th European Greenways Award in 2021, and most recently being named Best Visitor Attraction in the Irish Independent 2022 Reader Travel Awards.

The captivating trail offers spectacular views of the Comeragh Mountains, the River Suir and the Waterford coast as you freewheel your way from the City to the sea, through tunnels, across viaducts and past old railway stations. Attractions along the dedicated cycling and walking trail include, with the world-renowned ornamental gardens at Mount Congreve, Waterford Suir Valley Railway, and the Copper Coast UNESCO Global Geopark. The many vibrant coffee stops along the route will give you a flavour of the fantastic food and coffee scene in Waterford, where you can relax with an old friend or a new one!

Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. Joe Kelly said “Happy fifth birthday to a much-loved amenity here in Waterford and the South East. Waterford Greenway is a visitor attraction that has grown and developed due to the dedication, vision and commitment of Waterford City and County Council, the local communities, businesses and stakeholders. The enjoyment this visionary project brings to so many of all ages and abilities is just amazing.”

Michael Walsh, Chief Executive, Waterford City and County Council added, “Waterford Greenway has been transformative for the county. Businesses have been built, visitors have come time and again and of course locals have the huge benefit of having this world class amenity on their doorstep.”

The Waterford Greenway can only get better as work is already underway to improve the Greenway connection to the city centre and are due for completion in 2023. Works are progressing very well on the New Ross Greenway, with the new sustainable transport bridge in the City allowing visitors to continue their Greenway journey from Waterford through parts of Kilkenny and Wexford.

Feasibility studies for a connection between Waterford City and Tramore, Dungarvan and Mallow and a Waterford Greenway to Suir Blueway connection are all underway and will undoubtedly bring more opportunities to locals and visitors to get out and enjoy the fantastic sights in Waterford and the South East.

You can follow Waterford Greenway on Facebook or Instagram for all the latest on what’s happening and share your memories (old and new) to help us celebrate five great years of the Waterford Greenway using the hashtags #HappyBirthday #WaterfordGreenway

www.visitwaterfordgreenway.com

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Councils to examine feasibility of new Greenway linking Mallow and Dungarvan

Pictured in 2021 at contract signing stage of the Dungarvan to Mallow Greenway Feasibility study were: Johnny Brunnock, Trails Officer, Waterford City & County Council; James Fogarty, Deputy Chief Executive, Cork County Council, Cllr. Tom Cronin, Cathaoirleach of the Dungarvan/Lismore Municipal District; Niall Healy, Director of Services Cork County Council; Cllr Kay Dawson, Former Chair of Fermoy Municipal District; Kieran Boyle, Atkins; Pauline Moriarty, Fermoy MDO, Cork County Council; Richie Walsh, SEO, Waterford City & County Council.

Cork County Council and Waterford City and County Council are to examine the feasibility of a new Greenway linking the two counties.

The potential Greenway would be developed along a 77.35km stretch of scenic countryside adjacent to the River Blackwater, incorporating stunning scenery and using viaduct crossings at key landmark locations.

The route under consideration would run from Mallow, through to Fermoy, and onto Dungarvan where it could link-in and connect with the existing Waterford Greenway.

Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Gillian Coughlan, said, “This project, should it come to pass, would provide a wonderful opportunity to create a vibrant tourist attraction in the north of the county, which in turn could feed into the tremendous success that is the Waterford Greenway. Nature has already provided us with a wonderful backdrop which in itself already draws tens of thousands of tourists every year. Since the pandemic struck, everyone truly appreciates the benefits of being outdoors, and it is incumbent upon us to explore every opportunity to create new and compelling reasons to explore our wonderful county. I look forward to the outcome of the feasibility study.”

Commenting on the project, Mayor of Waterford City and County Cllr. Joe Kelly, said, “The existing Waterford Greenway has been an unparalleled success since its opening in March 2017. We have witnessed at first hand the transformative effect that a project like this can have on local communities, business and the health &well being of our people. Here in the heart of Ireland’s Ancient East, Waterford has already been working with Kilkenny, Wexford and Tipperary on Greenway and other outdoor recreation projects. We now look forward to potentially creating further linkages with our near neighbours in Cork through what has the potential to be a very exciting Greenway project.”

Cork County Council will act as the lead authority to carry out the required management responsibilities for the feasibility study, including the formal appointments of project consultants.

Chief Executive of Cork County Council, Tim Lucey, said, “This feasibility study is the first step in bringing a project like this to fruition. This is an opportunity to develop a strategic, sustainable and captivating Greenway that links the beautiful countryside at the heart of Munster to the scenic coast of Waterford, and beyond. We look forward to seeing the results of the study, and would like to thank the Department of Transport for the funding that has allowed us to explore this exciting project in greater detail.”

Having provided services to similar projects in Ireland and internationally, consultancy company Atkins will bring experience from previous projects, including the Royal Canal Greenway and the Baldoyle to Portmarnock Greenway as well as the ongoing Fingal Coastal Way and Boyne Greenway. Kieran Boyle, Technical Director at Atkins, said: “The Dungarvan to Mallow Greenway Project will provide a new scenic link for local communities and tourists alike to traverse between attractions while enjoying the beautiful landscape. We look forward to collaborating with Cork County Council and Waterford City and County Council to create a new focal point for the region that supports more sustainable travel, encourages tourism, and complements the natural landscape.”

Funding of €361,238 has been awarded to both Cork County Council and Waterford City and County Council by the Department of Transport under the Strategy for the Future Development of National and Regional Greenways to complete the feasibility project.

As part of the initial steps in the development of the feasibility study, the Local Authorities are launching an Online Public Consultation to seek the views of the general public on the Dungarvan to Mallow Greenway. The Consultation will provide information on the vision for the Greenway and other keys details being considered during the initial feasibility route option assessment study. Members of the public are invited to visit the www.corkrdo.ie/greenways from the 7th March to submit their comments online. A local awareness campaign will also be undertaken.

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Mayor of Waterford City and County accepts Waterford Greenway award

Photographs: Patrick Browne

2022 got off to a promising start as Waterford Greenway added to its trophy cabinet when the 46km walking and cycling trail was named as winner of the ‘Best Visitor Attraction’ in the Irish Independent 2022 Reader Travel Awards.

With tens of thousands of amenities, places and hospitality businesses nominated in fourteen categories, Irish Independent readers were particularly taken with Waterford Greenway.

Some of the Irish Independent’s readers comments included, “The surface is perfect,” and with coffee and lunch stops “for treats” along the way, and a super choice of places to eat, drink and stay in Waterford and Dungarvan and “It is always alive with people.”  Locals as well as tourists were particularly forthcoming with their praise for Waterford Greenway, citing “It promotes exercise, social get-togethers of families and mental well-being through its safe routes” and “It soothes the soul.”

Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. Joe Kelly was delighted to accept the award.  “What’s particularly special about this award is that it was made on behalf of the Irish Independent readers who have visited Waterford Greenway. With their experiences so positive and their feedback so affirming, the Council’s Greenway team, local communities, and stakeholders can take great pride in what they have created in Waterford.”

Pól Ó Conghaile, Travel Editor Irish Independent said, “I look forward to the Irish Independent’s Reader Travel Awards because they provide us with priceless, real-world insights from holidaymakers on the ground. Tens of thousands of comments provide a fascinating picture of what people actually visit, and why – and not a marketing snapshot.”

“This year, it was no surprise to me to see the Waterford Greenway top the nominations for ‘Ireland’s Best Visitor Attraction’.  It’s a super example of a route that has caught the imagination of both locals and visitors, created real tourism momentum, and inspired businesses both on and offline.  In just a few short years, it has become a gold standard greenway.”

The old railway line from Waterford City to Dungarvan is a spectacular 46km off-road cycling and walking trail which travels through time and nature crossing eleven bridges, three impressive viaducts and an atmospheric tunnel.

The popular route in Ireland’s Ancient East is peppered with heritage, history and natural beauty as it runs alongside the world renowned ornamental gardens at Mount Congreve, Waterford & Suir Valley narrow gauge heritage railway, former woollen mills and railway stations and offers breathtaking views of the River Suir, the Comeragh Mountains, The Copper Coast and Dungarvan Bay.

No stranger to accolades, Waterford Greenway made an impact with Irish Independent readers in 2019 when it was named ‘Ireland’s Favourite Adventure’ in the Irish Independent Reader Travel Awards, while in 2021 it was awarded silver in the Excellence Category at the 10th European Greenways Award Ceremony.  In 2020 Waterford Greenway was the first Irish Greenway to attain Green Flag status, which it retained in 2021.

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Waterford Greenway voted Best Visitor Attraction in Irish Independent Reader Travel Awards

In what can only be described as a phenomenal start to the year for Waterford Greenway, today saw the popular Waterford trail named as winner of the ‘Ireland’s Best Visitor Attraction’ in the Irish Independent Reader Travel Awards 2022.

The old railway line from Waterford City to Dungarvan is a spectacular 46km off-road cycling and walking trail which travels through time and nature crossing eleven bridges, three impressive viaducts and an atmospheric tunnel.

The popular route in Ireland’s Ancient East is peppered with heritage, history and natural beauty as it runs alongside the world renowned ornamental gardens at Mount Congreve, Waterford Suir Valley Railway, former woollen mills and railway stations and offers breathtaking views of the River Suir, the Comeragh Mountains, The Copper Coast UNESCO Global Geopark, and Dungarvan Bay.

Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. Joe Kelly was delighted with Waterford Greenway’s latest accolade, “It’s fantastic that Waterford Greenway has been chosen by the Irish Independents’ readers as Ireland’s Best Visitor attraction.”

“It’s a much loved amenity here in Waterford and the South East, but it is wonderful to see how much an impression Waterford Greenway has made throughout the country.  It is a visitor attraction that has grown and developed due to the dedication, vision and commitment of Waterford City and County Council’s Greenway team, the local communities and stakeholders.”

Some of the Irish Independent’s readers comments included, “The surface is perfect,” and with coffee and lunch stops “for treats” along the way, and a super choice of places to eat, drink and stay in Waterford and Dungarvan. “It is always alive with people.”  And those people are not just tourists: “It promotes exercise, social get-togethers of families and mental well-being through its safe routes” and “It soothes the soul.”

Michael Walsh, Chief Executive, Waterford City and County Council added, “Waterford Greenway has been transformative for the county.  It’s not just locals who are benefitting, but as evidenced by this award, visitors from right throughout the country.”

Johnny Brunnock, Trails Officer, Waterford City and County Council added that the combined efforts of locals and the business community had helped to create a fantastic amenity that the county can be very proud of.  “It’s been a tough two years for everybody, but amenities like Waterford Greenway give people the opportunity to get out and about, and stay connected, and all the while taking in some of the most breath-taking scenery that the county has to offer.”

No stranger to accolades, Waterford Greenway made an impact with Irish Independent readers in 2019 when it was named ‘Ireland’s Favourite Adventure’ in the Irish Independent Reader Travel Awards, while in 2021 it was awarded silver in the Excellence Category at the 10th European Greenways Award Ceremony.  In 2020 Waterford Greenway was the first Irish Greenway to attain Green Flag status, which it retained in 2021.

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Notes:

Ireland’s Best Visitor Attraction is one of over a dozen categories in the Irish Independent Reader Travel Awards for 2022.

Works commence of Waterford Greenway Extension

Works have commenced on the extension of the Waterford Greenway from Bilberry to the City Centre and are expected to be completed within 18 months.

The project will help augment the user numbers along this section of the Greenway and, in addition, provide users with a safer and more comfortable cycling and walking experience as they approach the City Centre.

The enhancement and improvement of the 2.1km stretch of the Greenway will also provide for the future Greenway links to New Ross, currently at construction phase, and Rosslare and Tramore.

Following a competitive tendering process the €6.8m contract was awarded to John Craddock Ltd. of Kilcullen.

The Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. Joe Kelly welcomed the commencement of the project and the continuing commitment to enhance the Waterford Greenway.

“The Greenway has breathed new life into the city and county and the fact that this extension will give users a more comfortable cycling and walking experience is to be welcomed.”

“Having recently being recognised as the second best Greenway in Europe, at the 10th European Greenway Awards, just reinforces what we already know.  The Waterford Greenway is an amazing amenity and the envy of many cities and countries in Europe.”

“The extension from Bilberry to the City Centre will enable users to extend their journey from Dungarvan right into the heart of Waterford city, and eventually onto Tramore and New Ross.”

“The collaboration and cooperation of the regions’ local authorities in consolidating the Greenway network is testament to the significance in which the Greenway is held as a valuable tourist attraction and a means to promote leisure and encourage active movement.”

Further works will include 2 structural steel boardwalks, boundary treatment comprising of a combination of Reinforced Concrete retaining walls and paving works, including exposed aggregate, limestone/granite slabs and setts.

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Free to use images:  Patrick Browne

l-r:  Michael Walsh Chief Executive Waterford City and County Council, John Craddock of John Craddock Construction Ltd., Paul Flynn Executive Engineer Waterford City and County Council,  Alan Wright of John Craddock Ltd., Mayor of Waterford City and County Cllr Joe Kelly, and Caroline Butler Project Director Clifton Scannell Emerson Associates.

John Craddock of John Craddock Construction Ltd, Mayor of Waterford City and County Cllr Joe Kelly and Michael Walsh, Chief Executive Waterford City and County Council.

New Walk Waterford booklet launched

Mayor of Waterford City & County Council, Cllr. Joe Kelly officially launches the new version of the Walk Waterford-From Sea to Mountains booklet, along with an accompanying on-line resource www.visitwaterfordtrails.com at the Anne Valley Walk, Dunhill. Cllr. Kelly was joined for the launch by Mike Walsh, Mary Finn and Bernie Roberts all Dunhill Tourism Walking Trail CLG, Johnny Brunnock, Trails Officer, Waterford City & County Council and Willie Moore, chairperson, Dunhill Tourism Walking Trail CLG. Photo: John Foley Images.

The new version of the Walk WaterfordFrom Sea to Mountains booklet, along with an accompanying online resource was recently launched by Mayor of Waterford City & County Council, Cllr. Joe Kelly at the beautiful Anne Valley Walk.

Walk Waterford is a series of 39 recreational walks throughout Waterford, from stunning coastal walks to breathtaking mountain scenery to tranquil woodland settings to picturesque towns and villages and Ireland’s oldest city. In the booklet, each walk has a map, trail description and important trail information that will help visitors plan their visit. The format of the booklet sees trails being grouped into themes such as coastal, mountain, woodland & nature, long distance & Greenway and urban trails. With details about the grading of each trail, it is hoped that the booklet will help people make an informed decision about the trail they choose to visit.

Launching the booklet, Cllr. Kelly said that he was ‘delighted to be able to help formally announce that the booklet was available. It will be a great free resource for people planning their next walk, day trip or holiday to Waterford’.

Cllr. Kelly also went on to say that ‘now more than ever, as we continue to emerge from pandemic restrictions, it is vital for our health & well-being that we keep active and healthy. Where better to do this in the great outdoors. We are very fortunate here in Waterford, in the heart of Ireland’s Ancient East, to have a wealth of trails and amenities to choose from. I look forward to discovering some of the trails myself over the summer!’

The booklet which was prepared by Waterford City & County Council was also supported with funding from the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme which is administered by the Department of Rural and Community Development. Johnny Brunnock, Trails Officer with Waterford City & County Council, who was also in attendance at the launch, pointed out that ‘the project also includes the addition of a dedicated trails section to the Visit Waterford website which promotes all there is to see and do in Waterford, as well as where to stay, what’s on and where to eat.

We would encourage locals and visitors alike to log onto www.visitwaterfordtrails.com where they can download the new booklet, watch newly created videos and find lots of useful information while planning their visit to the outdoors. We would also like to thank all those who contributed to this project and of course all of the voluntary trail development groups around the county, like the local community here at the Anne Valley Walk who manage and maintain many of Waterford’s wonderful walks for all of us to enjoy’.

Walking in nature is without doubt one of life’s most enjoyable experiences and best of all…it’s free! However, with this freedom comes responsibility. Waterford City & County Council and stakeholders involved in this project would like to take this opportunity to remind those venturing into the outdoors to be considerate of your surroundings, land owners and other trail users at all times. Always remember to practice the principles of Leave no Trace. Dispose of waste properly: If you bring it in, take it out. Visit www.leavenotraceireland.org for further information.

The new Walk Waterford booklet will be available from Waterford City & County Council, Tourist Offices, Libraries and other outlets over the coming days and weeks.

Find your trail in Waterford…where Ireland begins.