Archive for the ‘Projects’ Category

Sustainable Development of ‘The Boathouse’ at Kilkeel Harbour

Posted on: September 21st, 2021 by Margaret

SEA FLAG are delighted to assist Anglo-North Irish Fish Producers Organisation (ANIFPO) in the revitalisation of an existing, historic building located at Kilkeel Harbour, known locally as ‘the boathouse’.

Under Union Priority 4 of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, the Fisheries Local Action Group approved funding to carryout renovations to the boathouse to provide a multi-use facility for the use of ANIFPO/Sea Source, Kilkeel Harbour Works, fisheries businesses and the local community.

New Business for Kilkeel

Posted on: September 21st, 2021 by Margaret

New business, Quay Dog will develop natural fish-based dried dog food which involves using raw by-products, in particular, fish skins, sourced locally in Kilkeel.

The project involves the processing of low valued fish produce into a higher value product, providing additional income and economic growth within the fishing industry and locality.

Keeping fishing active and safe during the sanitary crisis

Posted on: September 3rd, 2021 by Margaret

Motivated to support the sector and avoid serious economic consequences, the Basque FLAG implemented measures to involve the fisheries sector in potential solutions. In April and May, the Basque FLAG cooperated with 12 fishers’ associations (cofradías) to acquire personal protective equipment (masks, gloves, overalls, etc.), and safeguard the sector’s economic activities.

The project, pending FLAG funding, received financing from the cofradías. The FLAG oversaw the collection of protective items, purchased through the regional government of the Basque Country, prepared the packages for each cofradía and distributed them. The first order was distributed in the second week of April, and by May the FLAG had distributed three rounds of packages,  including 40 000 masks and 5 000 pairs of gloves, for almost 3 000 workers (including fishers, auction staff and marketers).

Environmental Improvement Scheme Paves the Way at Portavogie Promenade

Posted on: September 3rd, 2021 by Margaret

SEA FLAG welcomes a boost which will promote the rich maritime history of Portavogie and  improve the overall aesthetics of the promenade and help towards improving health and tourism in the area.

Under Union Priority 4 of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, the Fisheries Local Action Group approved funding to enable environmental improvements at Portavogie promenade. This project will reenergise the local promenade, improving the connection between current fishing provision and the heritage of fishing within the local community and surrounding area of Portavogie.


Carlingford Lough Ferry Sets Sail

Posted on: August 20th, 2021 by Margaret

Carlingford Lough Ferry have been successfully awarded funding under Union Priority 4, European Maritime and Fisheries Fund to develop and fit out an onboard passenger cruise experience.

The introduction of 2 new cruises, Maritime Tour cruises and Seafood Showcase cruises are a welcomed development in the area. The project aims to develop the area of maritime tourism by running these cruises as an annual schedule of summer events on Carlingford Lough in addition to the car ferry service. The large deck area on the car ferry offers a platform for outdoor social gatherings and to showcase the heritage and natural beauty of the local area.

The first of the two new cruises is a maritime tour of the Lough with an onboard audio tour guide who would talk about the maritime history, heritage, wildlife and sea life, in addition to the heritage of the fishing communities that have developed in the local area.

The second would be a ‘seafood showcase’ through a series of ‘Meet the Maker’ cruises. These cruises would be a collaboration with local seafood providers to showcase the diverse range of offerings the Lough and coastal region has to offer.

This project would promote social inclusion within the fishing community of Kilkeel and surrounding areas. Through the promotion of maritime cruises and shared culture and heritage of fisheries areas, this project could also indirectly support the fisheries sector economic growth and tourism products of the areas.


‘From Sea to Service’

Posted on: August 20th, 2021 by Margaret

Under Union Priority 4, European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, funding was awarded to Down Business Centre enabling them to initiate a ‘From Sea to Service’ project.

The ‘Sea to Service’ delivery programme is a series of training workshops to be undertaken in the hospitality sector, with both Front and Back of House staff. These groups will comprise of management, servers, etc. The participating businesses will be made up of restaurants, cafes, pubs and takeaways, within the areas of Ardglass, Kilkeel and Portavogie. The purpose of these workshops is to instil a passion surrounding local seafood and fish produce, as well as allowing participating businesses to ‘upsell’ these dishes more effectively.

The project contributes to the Seaflag Objectives, with the project contributing to 3 out of the 5 stated targets;

  • Adding Value, through the potential creation of jobs and the promotion of innovation across all supply chain activities;
  • Diversification, through the linkages between the commercial fishing and the local hospitality sector promoting the maritime economy; and
  • Social and Cultural, through promoting the cultural heritage of fishing industry through the story of local seafood.

Marine Litter Initiative

Posted on: July 20th, 2021 by Margaret

Under Union Priority 4 of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, the Fisheries Local Action Group approved funding to NIFHA.

The two-year project will involve a variety of elements aimed to improve waste management in the three fishing harbours, Ardglass, Portavogie and Kilkeel, through the development and implementation of an action plan focused on marine litter to include re-purposing and recycling of end-of-life fishing gear and how the fishery harbours control and recycle waste.

There will also be a focus on clean-up efforts to include co-ordinating local beach cleans, linking in with existing schemes and organisations. The project also involves promoting and monitoring the Fishing for Litter scheme and creating simple messaging to help those using the harbours to understand best practice in waste management through the development of a local code of practice, reflecting key elements from the Responsible Fishing Ports for small ports scheme and blue flag marinas scheme.


Renovation Project Goes Ahead in Portavogie

Posted on: March 26th, 2021 by Margaret

SEA FLAG is delighted to announce confirmation of funding awarded under Union Priority 4, European Maritime and Fisheries Fund,  to demolish a decaying boat shed and rebuild three industrial/commercial properties which would be available for rent in Portavogie Harbour.

The proprietors aim to promote economic growth, social inclusion and job creation within Portavogie and the fishing industry. The business would address the identified shortage of new business premises and premises to host fishing support services for the Portavogie Fleet.

With the aim to diversify the business to include leasing of harbour workspace units in the Portavogie area, this renovation would enhance the area to provide accommodate a number of ventures thus strengthening the future sustainability of the harbour.

The project aims to develop attractive, purpose-built units that would appeal to fishing support businesses and Small Micro Enterprises.

Follow SEA FLAG’s website and facebook pages to see how this development is transformed later this year.

Net mending: preserving tradition through diversification

Posted on: August 13th, 2020 by Margaret

Net mending, a sector which overwhelmingly relies on women, has long been underestimated and unknown to a large part of society, despite it being a fundamental auxiliary activity to fishing. There are no formal schools for this profession, so net makers treasure their artisanal knowledge, which has been passed down from generation to generation. Over the years and with practice, they can master the subtle art of net making.

With the support of their respective FLAGs, the net makers associations of Malpica, Corme, Burela, and A Guarda, decided to collaborate to increase the visibility of the profession and showcase the value to their work. Their main objectives were to promote their activity as well as to increase their income through diversification.

To make this possible, the associations involved in the project participated in a number of dissemination events, as well as in exhibitions and craft fairs where they could showcase their handmade products, created from the materials they use daily. Informative workshops were held targeting all kinds of audiences, contributing to increased awareness about the difficulty of this activity and its importance for seafarers.

In addition, and in cooperation with the Galician Crafts Foundation (‘Fundación Centro Galego de Artesanía e de Deseño’), they initiated a training programme for the creation of handmade objects, usually accessories and jewellery, using materials that net makers traditionally use in their work: nets, needles, ropes… These were then sold at the official sales points of the Galician crafts brand (‘Artesanía de Galicia‘) and to different fashion and craft shops. With the help of the regional federation for net making, which joined forces with these four associations, the project was eventually extended to the entire Galician net makers collective.

Reviving the fisheries sector by promoting local seafood

Posted on: August 13th, 2020 by Margaret

The Opale Coast and Three Estuaries FLAGs, which cover the region, surveyed the stakeholders in the areas seafood sector at the beginning of the COVID-19 lockdown, with the objective of collecting their ideas for strengthening local production and its sustainability when economic activity resumes.

Stakeholders identified promotion and communication as being important in the survey. As such, the FLAGs have now developed a promotion campaign with the help of a communications consultancy. The campaign consisted of two fun and playful and educational advertisements over a double-page spread in local and regional newspapers focused on both fishing and aquaculture products.

The campaign, which ran for a total of five weeks, was based on promoting local seafood, as well as training opportunities, meaning it was also able to promote the generational renewal of the sector. Twice a week, readers were able to discover local recipes cooking techniques, enjoy a seafood quiz, and acquire ‘tips’ related to the specific fishing activity featured that week. Each of the weekly campaign instalments were translated into English for wider distribution.

Becoming self-sufficient through renewables

Posted on: August 13th, 2020 by Margaret

Eastern Asturias FLAG has supported the cofradía (fishing organisation) of Bustio to finance two projects with the aim of making its land-based operations 100% self-sufficient in renewable energy. The first one, implemented in 2014, consisted of solar panels connected to the national energy network. However, without energy storage capacity, the solar panels could only supply the energy needed at certain times of the day.

In order to achieve a total energy autonomy, in 2017, the cofradía decided to add storage batteries to allow surplus energy to be collected and used when needed. This second project also included wind turbines and a biodiesel generator to cover production downturns when there is a lack of wind and sun.

In view of the cofradia of Bustio’s commitment to transforming the fishing sector towards a low-carbon economy, the implementation of these projects brings environmental benefits by helping to reduce the CO2 footprint and the emission of polluting gases. Reducing the energy cost of activities such as labelling, auctioning or the storage of fresh fish also brings financial benefits. Given the success of the projects, the Asturian government is now studying how to transfer the use of renewables to the other cofradías of the region.

An aquarium supplied by local fishermen on the Wild Atlantic Way

Posted on: August 13th, 2020 by Margaret

Achill Island, a big focus of recreational fishing tourism until the 80’s, suffered a decline due to the reduction (or elimination) of certain species. Although it continued to be an important enclave of tourism, the lack of any indoor tourist activities made it less attractive to tourists. Local fishermen were therefore invited to provide the most unusual catches available in local waters, such as multi-coloured lobsters, to showcase the local fisheries wealth through the creation of the first local aquarium in Co. Mayo.

The aquarium was planned as an attraction to encourage visitors stay in the area when it is raining. Some 18 000 visitors came in the first months of opening in 2016, so the project was extended to also include a fisheries heritage museum. In 2019, visitor numbers were up to  almost 30 000 and, while previously during the low season months (November to May) the area and surrounding towns, such as Westport, were almost empty, today a significant number of families come to the aquarium throughout the year.

The project has created six full-time and three part-time jobs for local residents, mostly relatives of fishers. A marine biologist volunteer assists in the maintenance of the aquarium and has recently also developed a Marine Conservation Presentation for “transition year” students.

  • New indoor tourist facility in Achill
  • 98 000 tourists and 1500 students received since 2016
  • 6 full-time and 3 part-time jobs created in the local area
  • Local network with other tourist stakeholders created

As in this case, local areas should look for the necessary elements to capitalize on their potential, taking advantage of the existing goods to find solutions for local problems.

Lessons & contribution to CLLD objectives:

Lessons: One of the biggest challenges was the access to and securing of funding due to the strict limits for public money, for which the Aquarium and Visitor Centre needed to be included in local development schemes to access to alternative funds.

Contribution to CLLD objective: b) Supporting diversification inside or outside commercial fisheries and job creation on the areas

Kilkeel Boat Company Raises to new Heights

Posted on: June 30th, 2020 by Margaret

Funding was awarded to Ian Newell Boat Building and Repair Ltd enabling them to diversify and invest in new equipment . Due to an increase in demand for their engineering services, the new equipment will allow the company to perform safer and ease the handling of materials, to and from their profile machine.

Wellbeing Clinic to be Launched in Ardglass

Posted on: June 23rd, 2020 by Margaret

Ardglass will soon reap the benefits of a new Health and Wellbeing Clinic

Ardglass woman, Nuala Wills aims to open a new business in her home village in the near future. The new wellbeing clinic aims to provide a range of professional treatments to improve the wellbeing and quality of life for the people of Ardglass and surrounding areas.

The Ardglass Wellbeing Clinic has received grant funding approval from the South East Area Fisheries Local Action Group (SEA FLAG), who administers funding from the European Union and the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) through Union Priority 4 of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund.

Ms Wills having worked in the health and wellbeing service industry around the world for numerous years, and seeing the benefits this brings to clients, is eager to provide this service to the people in her local fishing community of Ardglass. The Ardglass Wellbeing Clinic will offer a variety of treatments, to include injury treatment, acupuncture, taping, clinical massage, sports massage, women’s health and fertility support treatments to name but a few. One of the main aims is to help fishermen and their families. Ms Wills commented the following:

‘Firstly, I would like to thank SEA FLAG and DAERA for this fantastic initiative and the team for their support throughout the application process. I would also like to encourage others within the fishing communities to take this opportunity and contact SEA FLAG regarding their potential projects.’

Ms Wills continued;

‘I am delighted to be able to provide health and wellbeing services in Ardglass. My aim is to support the fishermen and their families and boost the community wellbeing of Ardglass and surrounding areas. Coming from a fishing family and community, I know only too well that fishermen’s health and that of their family, can suffer through their unpredictable and antisocial hours, mental and physical stress, as well as work-related injuries. I will be providing Acupuncture, Injury Treatment, Women’s Health Treatments and Massage, offering flexible and convenient appointments to fit around the working hours of our unique hard-working fishing community. I want to help not just active fishermen but the whole fishing community, to improve their overall health and wellbeing. I am confident this new offering will have a positive impact on the community as a whole.’

SEA FLAG Chair, Alderman Carson commented:

‘I am pleased that SEA FLAG has approved grant assistance for the creation of a new business in one of our fishing dependent communities. I believe it is important to use different approaches to engage with each community as one size does not fit all. I am therefore delighted that through this project the local fishermen will benefit from having access to these health and wellbeing services at a time and location that accommodates their work pattern. Fishing is a physically demanding job, where you can be exposed to particularly challenging working conditions and the provision of a local, convenient wellbeing clinic service in Ardglass will be a great benefit to the community. I look forward to seeing this project move forward in the future and develop a strong client base.’

Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Councillor Laura Devlin said:

‘It is fantastic to see the benefits SEA FLAG is bringing to the fishing dependent communities, particularly providing much-needed financial support during these difficult unprecedent times. It is important that we continue to reinvigorate our communities and the local economy. I believe this facility will be a great asset to the village and surrounding areas, and I have no doubt that the community will benefit from this new local service.’

SEA FLAG is continuing to provide financial support to the fishing communities of Ardglass, Kilkeel and Portavogie and surrounding areas. The £2m funded programme is aimed at supporting projects which focus on the promotion of economic growth; business and job creation, and social inclusion; social wellbeing and cultural heritage in fisheries, aquaculture and maritime areas.

SEA FLAG is taking bookings for one-to-one virtual information sessions to provide information and guidance on the programme. For further information please contact a member of the SEA FLAG team on 0330 137 4051, or visit the website at

Nautical Themed Eco-Garden Sails Ahead in Ardglass

Posted on: May 4th, 2020 by Margaret

During the current coronavirus pandemic, South East Area Fisheries Local Action Group (SEA FLAG) is delighted to announce that a nautical themed eco-garden, community and educational area has been approved for grant assistance from the European Union and the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs through Union Priority 4 of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund.

The nautical themed eco-garden will be developed at St Nicholas’ Primary School, Ardglass. Ardglass village is one of the main fishing ports in Northern Ireland. For generations the local fishing industry has had a symbolic relationship with the families and school in Ardglass. St Nicholas’ Primary School is situated in the heart of the village and is seen as a hub for the families and wider community.

The project involves carrying out groundworks, and installing two towers, a frame with a reinforced cargo net, steps, a slide, a rope bridge and the bow of a ship. The frame will replicate a fishing boat, including netting filled with artificial fish, local to the Ardglass port, with sea life creatures fixed around the boat with buoys. There will also be an eco-garden area with plant and vegetable planters, bugs life trio, heavy duty picnic tables and an open playhouse. The project also involves inviting guest speakers from the environmental, fisheries, aquaculture and maritime sectors to deliver talks and activities to the community.

Theresa Taggart, St. Nicholas’ Primary School Parents’ Group Treasurer said, “The nautical themed eco-garden will complement the school’s curriculum of outdoor play and embrace their natural environment, local habitats and enhance awareness of the local fishing industry in the village of Ardglass and surrounding areas. The garden will educate children and families on how to care for their environment, which will be supported by the creation of allotments that families can take care of and work together to maintain”.

Theresa added, “I would like to take this opportunity to thank SEA FLAG and Northern Ireland Fish Producers’ Organisation for their financial support which will make this project possible.”

SEA FLAG Chair, Alderman Carson, commented, “This project will have a positive impact on the development and well-being of the children and young people of Ardglass and surrounding areas. This nautical themed eco-garden will enhance children’s learning through play, focusing on their cultural and marine heritage which will help promote the fishing industry and encourage young people to consider a career in the local fishing sectors.”

Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Councillor Charlie Casey said, ‘‘I am pleased to see that SEA FLAG is continuing to provide funding to the fishing dependent communities during these difficult times. I believe this project will be a great opportunity for grandparents, parents and the wider community of Ardglass to come together to share their knowledge of the fishing industry to the younger generation’’.

SEA FLAG is very keen to see this unutilised grassed area will be transformed now that the project has set sail to proceed.

SEA FLAG is continuing to provide financial support to the fishing communities of Ardglass, Kilkeel and Portavogie and would encourage businesses within the fishing, aquaculture and marine industries, community and voluntary sector to contact the SEA FLAG team on 0330 137 4051 or to discuss any potential projects.


Project update: check out the final product here: Nautical Themed Eco-Garden

Expansion of Marine Fabrication in Kilkeel

Posted on: February 12th, 2020 by Margaret

G. Smyth Boats Ltd currently operates from Kilkeel harbour, carrying out moulding hulls, fitouts/repairs of boats and complete builds.

Under Union Priority 4 of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, the Fisheries Local Action Group approved funding to enable the company to diversify into the moulding of a 10m – 12m mould catamaran. This in turn will allow an increase in production and efficiencies.

The quality of life in the fishing dependent community of Kilkeel will be improved by creating new jobs and safeguarding the existing full time jobs. The new equipment will ensure the company has the capabilities to meet customer demands and enable them to enter new markets.


Pictured from Left to Right: Andrew Rooney, FLAG representative; Lisa McBride, FLAG Board member; Gerald Smyth, G Smyth Boats Ltd; Councillor Roisin Mulgrew, Chairperson of  Enterprise, Regeneration and Tourism, Newry, Mourne and Down District Council; Alderman Angus Carson SEA FLAG Chair; and Patrick Higgins, FLAG representative.

Ardglass and Portavogie Chill Out

Posted on: February 11th, 2020 by Margaret

Northern Ireland Fisheries Harbour Authority (NIFHA) has recently installed two refrigerated bait stores, one at Ardglass Harbour and the other at Portavogie Harbour, funded through Union Priority 4 of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund.

The new chilled storage facilities are welcomed by the local creel fishermen in the local fishing communities. With the benefit of the refrigerated storage, this will protect and preserve the quality of their bait, assisting to maximise the lifespan of the resource and maximise efficiencies. The central chill stores will enable the fishermen to increase the length of time bait is viable, increase the security and protection of the bait and will also reduce its potential for contamination.

The facilities will have a positive impact on the local creel fishermen of Ardglass and Portavogie.

Manufacture & refurbishment of scallop fishing equipment

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

Ian Newell Boat Building & Repair Ltd is a well-established business which operates from the harbour in Kilkeel. The business undertakes a range of steel fabrication and engineering work within the fishing industry.

The Fisheries Local Action Group approved Ian Newell Boat Building & Repair’s application and awarded grant assistance towards a high definition plasma cutting machine. The equipment provides the business the opportunity to undertake a wide range of jobs with greater turnaround time. This includes the making  and repair scallop fishing equipment. Previously local fishermen had the inconvenience and cost of sending the equipment to England for repairs, but with a high quality service available in Kilkeel, the business has continued to thrive.

Surface preparation & coating division

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

DR Diesel, established in 2002, specialise in marine and industrial diesel engine repairs and servicing. Over the years the company’s services have expanded and they now have a fully equipped workshop on the harbour front in Kilkeel from where they offer engine repair, fabrication and general marine engineering services.

The Fisheries Local Action Group approved an application from DR Diesel to diversify from their current marine diesel business into surface preparation and coating of sea vessels. Surface preparation is achieved through hydroblasting a process thatinvolves the use of water propelled at high speeds to clean surfaces and materials. By focusing and pressurising the water stream, the force generated can remove a vast range of films and materials. This coupled with a hot zinc metallisation system used to apply the coating to vessels, now provides a high quality service with a shorter turnaround time for the customer whilst increasing business turnover and employment.

Kilkeel Seafoods; 14 The Harbour

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

Kilkeel Seafoods (which is part of the Whitby Seafood Group) receives fresh scampi tails from the landings in Kilkeel and other Irish ports, freezes the raw material and then uses this material to manufacture scampi to be breaded scampi for sale in the Irish and UK foodservice and retail market.

The Fisheries Local Action Group approved a project which would consolidate the two sites which existed within Kilkeel harbour, one located on the North Harbour with the other located on South Harbour. The business has a strong desire to continue the business at Kilkeel harbour but to ensure this can happen the business will urgently needed to relocate their full operations to more suitable premises within the harbour.

The Fisheries Local Action Group were delighted to approve the project for the enlarged processing facility would enables current and future expansion of seafood processing in Kilkeel, in particular the movement of scampi shelling facilities from elsewhere in the U.K. and Asia into Kilkeel, creating additional employment and strengthening investment for the long term.

Maritime Heritage Based Tourism Infrastructure and Communication

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

‘The Maritime Heritage Based Tourism Infrastructure and Communication’ project was a collaborative project between Strangford Lough and Lecale Partnership (SLLP), Newry Mourne and Down District Council, Ards and North Down Borough Council and the Northern Ireland Fishery Harbour Authority. The aim of the project was to improve the capacity of the fishing dependent communities, by enabling each town/village areas to attract and retain tourists and other business and to add to their current tourism offering whilst increasing the services available at the harbours.

The project brought together a number of interrelated work packages which include Heritage Trails, Heritage Guides, Public Realm of Portavogie and Wi-Fi provision within Ardglass, Kilkeel and Portavogie. The overall project was led by SLLP who are responsible for the delivery of the Heritage Guides. Newry, Mourne and Down District Council for the Heritage Trails, Ards and North Down District Council for Portavogie Public Realm and the NIFHA manage the Wi-Fi access within each of the three locations.

The delivery of this project demonstrates the true ethos of the FLAG approach, with a range of organisations working together to develop a project with wide reaching benefits for the local community. It is because of this approach the FLAG were keen to approve such a project.

Fisherman’s Development Training

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

With the average age of those involved in the industry increasing , the Seafish Industry Training Associations proposal was to address this by providing an opportunity for those who are involved in the industry, to work towards a Class II Skippers Qualification. By attaining this qualification it provides those with the opportunity to continue to develop professionally whilst continuing to work within the industry.

The popular course developed a range of skills in the use of electronic navigation systems, General Operators Certificate in radio and advanced fire fighting which required a considerable level of commitment and dedication in order to complete.

New business horizons for fishing villages

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

Newry, Mourne and Down District Council were successful in attaining grant assistance towards the development of the ‘Mourne Coastal Path Feasibility Study’.  The aim of the study was to assess the feasibility of developing a coastal walking path between Greencastle and Portavogie identifying tourism and business development opportunities that will enhance the visitor experience along the way by creating unique attractions and experiences’.

The Fisheries Local Action Group approved project was particularly visionary in its approach as the as the feasibility study  has the potential to identify a range of options and may be used to attain future grant assistance in the realisation of the project.

Celebrating the NI Seafood Industry in Film: Fishers, Farmers and Our Coastal Communities

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

From the fishermen who toil to bring home fantastic fresh seafood and the shellfish farmers who grow it; to the auctioneers and processors; fishmongers and fish fryers, the Seafish led project approved by the Fisheries Local Action Group brings together a collection of films that look at the rarely seen world of the seafood industry through interviews with those at its heart.

‘Fishers, Farmers and our Coastal Communities’ provides a unique visual record of the fantastic produce landed daily into the fishing villages; the stories of the boats, factories and retailers who process, market and sell seafood at home and abroad.

Cranfield Beach

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

The Fisheries Local Action Group approved scheme at Cranfield enabled Newry, Mourne and Down District Council to enhance one of its main beaches ensuring  users have an even better experience whenever they visit the site. The works have resulted in an upgrade to the children’s play park with new adult fitness equipment; installation of new pathways; erection of fencing; and the provision of entrance feature signage and interpretation panels in line with the Mourne Coastal Route branding.

As well as the above, separate works at the site included installing rock armour along the beach front. The Fisheries Local Action Group recognised that by enhancing the facility at Cranfield Beach, Kilkeel would reap the benefits of greater visitor numbers whilst increasing the potential spend of tourists in the fishing dependent community.

Chairperson for Newry, Mourne and Down District Council, Councillor Naomi Bailie, welcomed this investment by stating that she has seen “the real value that the South East Area European Fisheries Funding has had in 2 of our important coastal recreational facilities. Both schemes have brought significant enhancements to the quality of the user and visitor experience, and the range of activities that are now on offer at both sites. The Mourne Esplanade, Kilkeel and Cranfield Beach are both located in unique settings, and together they have the potential to impact on the health and well-being of those who live in the fishing dependant community and surrounding areas.”

Ardglass Creel Bait Store

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

The NI Fisheries Harbour Authority installed and provided a chilled storage facility to enable the local creel fishermen to store their fishing bait at the harbour of Ardglass, in a safe, efficient and sustainable manner. Previous to this the bait was creating an unpleasant environment at the harbour and storage was somewhat difficult.

This provision of a central store reduces the amount of bait left at the quaysides whilst being moved to boats. Having a chill storage facility at the harbour will enable the fishermen to increase the length of time bait is viable and also increases the security and protection of the bait and reduce its potential for contamination.

The Harbour Authority Chief Executive, Mr Kevin Quigley expressed his delight receiving this funding and hopes the local fishermen will continue to reap the benefits. Mr Quigley said: ‘Through this funding secured from SEA, the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and the European Union, the Harbour Authority is now in a position to provide a central chill store at the harbour of Ardglass. This facility will improve the quality of life in the fishing dependent community of Ardglass as it will provide better storage facilities for the creel fishermen for their bait, that will enable them to store their bait on the harbour in a safe and hygienic manner.’

Mourne Esplanade

Posted on: October 5th, 2018 by

The Mourne Esplanade, Kilkeel, represents the main recreational and sporting facility for the fishing dependent community of Kilkeel. This scheme has resulted in significant enhancements which will increase usage to the facility, and includes lighting to the coastal pathway, an ornate boundary railing, fencing to the football pitch, renovations to the changing pavilion, a new seating and viewing area with adult fitness equipment, and 2 new art features depicting imagery from the fishing industry.

The funding approved by the Fisheries Local Action Group has provided a fantastic facility for the fishing dependent community of Kilkeel which will continue to deliver social, physical and recreational benefits to those who use it.

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Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs
European Structural and Investment Funds
Ards and North Down Borough Council
Newry, Mourne and Down District Council