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‘Funding will come for a Shannon project’ – Breen

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Individuals involved in The Venue which requires close to €8 million to get off the ground have been urged to stand by the project.

Director of Economic Development with Clare County Council, Liam Conneally when commenting on a motion from Cllr Mike McKee at the January meeting of the Shannon Municipal District stated, “A lot of work has been put in partnership with The Venue project, we require significant capital funding and the Department need proof why the site will be a starting point”. He added, “I believe the application for funding will be successful, my expectation is that in the coming months we will prepare for A level funding. There is a lot of work to be undertaken, we should stay at it and we will achieve success”.

At the same meeting, Cllr Gerry Flynn outlined his annoyance with views from business people posted on social media about local representatives. “I was very disappointed with the private business people who have put up on social media that the councillors for the town are not up to scratch and surplus to requirements”. The Independent continued, “I am encouraging the movers of he Venue to stay on the pitch, it is a long term goal we have been working on. The notion now that they are throwing their toys out of the pram that they didn’t get funding for an A rating project is wrong”. Sinn Féin’s Mike McKee commented, “Do we want The Venue? Of course we do, A street will be the heart of Shannon, The Venue will compliment it”.

Fine Gael held their Shannon selection for May’s local elections at Treacys Oakwood Hotel on Thursday last where their members of the Oireachtas shared their thoughts on the The Venue with members of the party.

“At the time Minister Murphy told it wasn’t successful I fought hard for it”, Junior Minister Pat Breen said. “We have to be careful with funding as a lot of it comes from the taxpayer,” he cautioned. “Funding will come for a Shannon project in the future, it has to be done in a proper structured way. We are working with Clare County Council and the Department to ensure we have a project that is fit for purpose for the next generation of Shannon”.

Deputy Joe Carey called on Clare County Council to step up for The Venue. “I’m disappointed it wasn’t funded and I immediately made representation to Minister Murphy when I heard it was unsuccessful”. He added, “Clare County Council needs to step up to the plate on this, a focal point is needed for this area. I hope an exciting project can emanate from the ashes of this proposal”.

“I would like to see more of a Government commitment to the principle of a project in the heart of the community,” Senator Martin Conway announced.

Following December’s announcement that only €100,000 would be allocated for The Venue which has a price tag of €8 million, the voluntary group driving the project opted to shelve plans having secured planning permission for the multi-functional Community, Civic and Arts Centre. A public meeting on the issue will take place at the end of the month.

Newmarket-on-Fergus native, Páraic McMahon is a freelance journalist and broadcaster currently working for numerous national and local publications including The Clare Echo, The Irish Examiner, The Irish Independent, The Irish Times, RTÉ, TheJournal.ie, The42.ie. A graduate of Mary Immaculate College, Páraic was previously employed by The Clare Herald and Clare FM. If you have a story, tip or some feedback for him then send an email to - paraic@clareecho.ie

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