In the hope of better for Sligo – Councillors approve ‘ambitious’ five-year tourism strategy for the county

Relying on Yeats and Wild Atlantic Way to attract half a million visitors.

Economy is struggling with nearly 25% shops lying idle.

Virtual silence on industrial development.

Sligo News File.

Sligo County Council has agreed on a tourism plan describing it as an ambitious strategy.

It aims to have the area among the top 10 performing counties over the next five years.

Despite the uncertainty of Brexit, the council has courageously referenced earning potential of €149m for the county based on 548,000 visitors per annum over the lifetime of the plan

However, there is virtual silence from all quarters on the development of a workable industrial development strategy. Sligo remains one of the most government neglected towns in the country with a high migration of young people in particular from the place.

WB Yeats – believed buried in France. Poet Louis MacNeice claimed that ‘the shiny new coffin transported Drumcliffe was more likely to contain ‘a Frenchman with a club foot’

No less a major concern is a growing threat to the retail and commercial sector. Nearly 25% of the shops are lying idle. Many others in the town and county are struggling to survive.

The Wild Atlantic Way is being touted by Ministers and TDs as an economic savour but, much more, not least substantial industrial activity, is needed if the once thriving town and its hinterland are not to end up an economic and social backwater of the North West.

The area has a resident MEP, Marian Harkin, and four TDs – Martin Kenny, Sinn Fein; Assistant whip to the Fine Gael party Tony McLoughlin, Fianna Fail duo Eamon Scanlon, the party’s spokesman on enterprise and employment, and Marc MacSharry. The county also has 18 local councillors.