Ennis in County Clare is named Ireland's Information Age Town and will benefit from an investment of £15 million to develop technologies and advance the information age society.
The announcement of Ireland's first Information Age Town was made by Minister for Public Enterprise Mary O'Rourke at an event held in the Point Theatre in Dublin. Telecom Éireann, organised the competition and 46 towns from all over the county to competed to become Ireland’s first Information Age Town. Four towns were shortlisted for the final; Ennis, Kilkenny, Castlebar and Killarney.
It is planned that every home in Ennis, will have access to an advanced phone system and a computer; every business ISDN and internet access, and every student will have access to computer learning.
The major proposal put forward by Ennis involves all sectors of the community and some of the projects are already up and running. President of Ennis Chamber of Commerce, TJ Waters explains what the win will mean for people living in Ennis.
You will find that you can access every business, every community, every sports group, or almost anybody who has an internet line or who has a webpage once you turn on your television or your computer.
While the competition is fun for those involved, Alfie Kane, chief executive Telecom Éireann, said its real intent
Is about moving Ireland moving towards the information age and that means all of the towns have got to move forward.
Therefore Telecom Éireann also announced a million pound investment for each of the runners-up, to allow them get some of their projects underway.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 24 September 1997. The reporter is Margaret Ward.