South Armagh MLA gets behind Bell’s Castle restoration drive

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Saturday, August 18th, 2012
Sinn Féin Assembly Member Megan Fearon has attended a meeting aimed at restoring Bell’s Castle and transferring its management to the local community. The meeting, which was arranged by Declan Mulgrew, gave members of the public the opportunity to give their views on the project and how it might be achieved. Speaking to Newry Times, Fearon said it was a ‘fantastic community campaign’ which she was happy to support. “This fabulous castle in the middle of South Armagh has so much potential as a tourist destination and community facility. I know that it may take time for the ownership to be transferred to the public but I know that Declan has been in contact with both the Architectural Heritage Fund and the National Trust and things are moving in the right direction.” “South Armagh, despite historic lack of investment from British politicians, now boasts some of the most outstanding tourist destinations in Ireland. We have the Ring of Gullion, Ti Chulainn Cultural Centre, Slieve Gullion Forest Park and Play Park and Kilnasaggart Stone to name but a few attractions.” Fearon pointed to neighbouring counties which also offer some breathtaking scenery. “In our neighbouring North Louth there are attractions like Roache’s Castle, The Long Woman’s Grave, Carlingford and the Cooley Mountains. And all of this is located in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. I think the restored Bell’s Castle would fit in wonderfully to the tourism jigsaw of the area.” Sinn Féin councillor Anthony Flynn also attended the meeting. Echoing Fearon’s sentiments, he added, “The possibilities for Bell’s Castle are endless, from a tourist hostel offering good quality, budget accommodation to a place where our children can access the history and folklore of the area. I am very excited about this project and delighted to be involved in it.”
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