Are local initiatives to develop the Wexford village of Courtown into a major tourist resort being held back by bureaucracy?
Courtown is one of County Wexford's more important tourism money makers. As a harbour and seaside village, it sees an influx of tourists during the summer months when its population swells by several thousand.
To date Courtown has been passed over for allocations of money to develop major tourist centres. All development in Courtown has come from local initiative and hard work. Public funding for improvements to the town’s sewerage system in the Riverchapel area and a designated car park are vital for Courtown’s continued expansion in the tourism sector.
Local people say they have a clear vision for Courtown,
We want to have it as a major seaside resort along the south east coast.
Rather than allocating funding to Courtown, they are convinced Wexford County Council is getting bogged down with unnecessary and costly surveys and reports.
It is calculated £300 is needed for the car park works. The locals located a suitable site for the development and raised £150 for the scheme. However the Council dragged its heels and ultimately the scheme fizzled out. Courtown residents fear that without the required infrastructure, tourists will go elsewhere. This loss of tourism will hugely impact businesses in the area.
This episode of 'Newsbeat’ was broadcast on 4 February 1971. The reporter is Michael Ryan. The track accompanying this clip is ‘Nature’s Disappearing’ by John Mayall.