Cllr Mark Hackett and Minister Pippa Hackett pictured in Ballycommon along the Grand Canal Greenway.

Offaly Greens hail continued investment in Grand Canal Greenway

Offaly Green representatives, Minister Pippa Hackett, Cllr Mark Hackett, Liam Walsh and Ekaterina Koneva have today welcomed the allocation of over €3.9 million for the Offaly stretch of the Grand Canal Greenway.

This is part of a wider announcement of €5.9 million for Offaly as part of the funding allocations for national roads and greenways throughout the country by Minister Eamon Ryan and Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII).

Welcoming the allocation, Minister Pippa Hackett said :“The Grand Canal Greenway is a county Offaly treasure of national significance and this allocation is proof that this Government continues to recognise its value by investing in its ongoing development.

Offaly Grand Canal projects funded as part of the 2024 allocations include a massive €2.4 million for the stretch from Turraun to Shannon Harbour, €700,000 for Daingean to Edenderry, another €450,000 for Leabeg to Boora and a quarter of a million euro for the Kilbeggan Link.

There are smaller grants of €35,000 for Daingean to Tullamore and Hennessy's Bridge to Turraun, €25,000 for Shannon Harbour to Banagher, while the final allocation is €80,000 for signage and enhancement on the greenway.

"The greenway contributes to the economic growth of both rural and urban areas of the county, promoting local business, tourism and activity-based holidays. On its own, the greenway is a fantastic amenity that spans the county, but it also extends access to other trails and facilities, like historic sites, and other existing and developing outdoor activities," she said.

Liam Walsh, together with Tullamore Green members, on the Grand Canal Greenway in Tullamore.

"Today’s allocation also compliments the EU Just Transition Regenerative Tourism Scheme which is open now and which County Offaly is primed and ready to benefit from,” the Offaly Minister added.

Cllr Mark Hackett, who represents North Offaly in the Edenderry District hailed a further €700,000 for the Daingean to Edenderry stretch of the Grand Canal Greenway as "another great development for North Offaly, and for Offaly in general".

"Investment of this scale will lead to more business opportunities along the routes; like cafes and bike shops, better access for the community who live here and use it regularly, and will boost tourism as visitors choose to visit and stay to enjoy everything that Offaly has to offer,” Cllr Hackett remarked.

Green Party representatives, Liam Walsh in Tullamore, and Ekaterina Koneva in Birr, hailed today’s announcement as a great win for the environment, as continued investments means more and more people can choose to leave the car at home, accessing and enjoying our beautiful county on foot or by bike.