Enterprise, Trade and Investment Minister Arlene Foster has highlighted the growing tourist potential of Fermanagh’s cultural heritage.
The Minister was speaking at Crom Castle for the launch of the Lough Erne Cot, a traditional craft used to navigate Fermanagh’s waterways.
The new vessel was built by boat enthusiasts and volunteers from counties Fermanagh and Cavan under a unique EU-funded cross-border project and will be used to enhance the visitor experience at the castle and the surrounding Crom Estate.
Congratulating those involved in the project, Arlene Foster said: “The counties of Fermanagh and Cavan, the Lough Erne systems, and indeed Crom Castle itself, are deeply connected to the traditional cot, which has a rich and diverse heritage. The new Lough Erne Cot therefore creates another exciting dimension to the attractions that visitors to Fermanagh and Crom Castle will be able to experience.
“The rich culture and heritage of Fermanagh has the potential to attract many more tourists to the area. With our great historic houses, castles and gardens to visit allied to a strong pre-Christian and Christian heritage, alongside our special landscapes and the waterways themselves; there is vast potential to appeal to sightseers and culture seekers.”
Also in attendance were Heather Humphreys, the Minister for Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht in the Republic of Ireland, and Lord Crichton, the son of Earl Erne and heir to Crom Castle who helped to launch the vessel.
The Minister continued: “The links that have been established now thrive under this collaboration and the aim is to continue this co-operation and outreach to benefit both counties.”