Causeway Chronicle

Council partners with tourism bodies to support outdoor recreation businesses in Causeway Coast and Glens

Maria McAlister, Landscapes and Activities Interim Manager at Tourism NI, addressing participants at the networking and support event in Cloonavin.

Council has partnered with Tourism Northern Ireland (TNI) and Ireland’s Association for Adventure Tourism (IAAT) for a special networking and support event for operators working in the outdoor recreation sector in Causeway Coast and Glens.

Businesses gathered for a meeting at Cloonavin on Friday, January 12, to explore potential opportunities and support available to the sector and to discuss some of the challenges it faces.

At the event, Amy Patterson from Crindle Bespoke, Limavady shared her journey from Crindle Stables to Crindle Bespoke, her alignment with the Embrace a Giant Spirit brand, her willingness to work collaboratively and how participation in Council and TNI mentoring and development programmes has contributed to her business growth.

Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Councillor Steven Callaghan said: “Council’s Destination and Coast and Countryside teams were delighted to join with our partner agencies for this event in Cloonavin, which presented a great opportunity for businesses involved in the outdoor recreation sector to meet and receive insights from Council, Tourism Northern Ireland and Ireland’s Association for Adventure Tourism.

“As a destination, Causeway Coast and Glens provides a fantastic and engaging landscape with diverse terrain, which allows for a wide range of outdoor recreation activities – many of which provide an adrenaline rush for thrill-seekers.”

Maria McAlister, Landscapes and Activities Interim Manager at TNI, added: “Outdoor tourism is a key element of the local economy with far-reaching benefits including social and community well-being. This timely initiative builds on the growing demand for outdoor activity and supports Tourism NI’s five year ‘Embracing Outdoor Tourism’ framework.

“We are delighted to support this event, to hear from local tourism operators on their tourism journeys, to amplify Northern Ireland’s compelling ‘Embrace a Giant Spirit’ destination brand and work together to advance sustainable, regenerative outdoor tourism to become a hallmark of the area. The focus to support high quality outdoor experiences will encourage a competitive offering that allows for retention of visitors for longer, visitor dispersal to lesser-known villages and towns, and an extended season”.

Brendan Kenny, CEO with IAAT added: “We are thrilled to have been part of this event and indeed it was a fantastic opportunity to meet local operators and other key stakeholders in the area. As the representative body for the adventure activity tourism sector, we look forward to supporting local operators in helping fulfil the exciting potential in this part of Northern Ireland as we seek to tackle the various challenges, and take advantage of opportunities, together.”

Pictured from left: Richard Gillen, Council’s Coast and Countryside Manager; Amy Patterson, Crindle Bespoke; Kerrie McGonigle, Council’s Destination Manager; Colin Wolfe, Chairman Ireland’s Association for Adventure Tourism (IAAT); Maria McAlister, Interim Manager Landscapes and Activities Tourism Northern Ireland; and Brendan Kenny, Chief Executive IAAT.

Causeway Chronicle

Causeway Chronicle