Tourism potential at Avoca Mines site being discussed
STEPHEN DONNELLY, Independent TD for Wicklow and East Carlow recently met with members of the Vale of Avoca Development Association Subcommittee and local tour operators to discuss the massive potential for local tourism and job creation at the Avoca Mines site.
'Avoca has a unique industrial heritage. The copper mines brought prosperity, migrant workers and dotted the landscape with chimneys and engine houses. There is a huge opportunity to turn the mines into a tourist attraction. But realising this potential requires a change in position from the Government. They need to acknowledge that this is a heritage site. And instead of seeing Avoca as a problem that needs to be solved, see it as a potential win for the local community and the local economy. Some environmental work may need to be done, but if public access continues to be restricted and if historic structures dismantled, this opportunity to preserve and develop the site will be missed.
'Tourism is one of Wicklow's' greatest untapped opportunities. We live in a beautiful county that has a lot to offer but we're not yet maximising our natural and man-made assets. The Avoca mines could become a real draw, like the Arigna Mines in Roscommon or the Geevor tin mine in Cornwall.'