The much anticipated new mooring facilities, enhancement of the riverside walk and Morrissey park in Belturbet town are well underway.
Managed by the North East Partnership, and monitored by the Special EU Programmes Body, the INTERREG IVA funded programme RIVER, provided four partner councils- Ballymoney, Ballymena, Coleraine Borough Councils and Cavan County Council with £1.3 million to improve rural towns and villages on their inland waterways.
The project development at Belturbet was welcomed by Cathaoirleach of Belturbet Town Council Barry Wilson, who said: “We all need to work together to restore the focus of the river Erne to Belturbet. The River Erne is one of Belturbet’s greatest assets. In the 1670’s Belturbet was the biggest depot town for export of linen and this all happened via the river… the River Erne was once our motorway”.
Charlie McGettigan of Inland Waterways recognises the importance of the river to Belturbet: “The River Erne flows through the middle of the town, depending on what time of the year it is, people moor up, and go into the town to eat and drink in its’ restaurants and pubs. During the middle of the summer, there are sometimes fifty to sixty boats a week mooring at Belturbet. The Erne boat rally at the end of May is our biggest event and brings great business to the town” he said.
Cavan Co. Council hope to complete all works on the marina by early summer.
See this week's paper for report on what was found during the archaeological dig which took place there.