Date Published: 18-May-2011
By Dara Bradley
Queen Elizabeth and US President Barack Obama may be staying clear of the west of Ireland during their State visits but tourism chiefs are confident Galway City and County will profit hugely from the expected boost the ‘Queen and Obama’ tourism effect will bring.
The United States and the United Kingdom are by far Ireland’s largest tourism markets and a substantial boost in bookings is expected to arise from the visits – and a rising tide of tourism numbers will lift all counties, including Galway, not just those that are the focus of the State visits, according to Fáilte Ireland West.
The spotlight of the world is shining on Ireland this week and next with more than 1,200 journalists accredited to cover the historic visit to the Republic of the Queen, the first in 100 years of a reigning British Monarch; and the ‘flying visit’ of President Obama.
More than 300 reporters from British news organisations, including in print, radio, TV and online media, are in Ireland this week to cover the Queen’s visit; as well as CNN and Russian, Chinese and European media outlets, many of whom, particularly the American networks and newspapers, will remain on to cover President Obama’s trip.
Despite an intensive lobbying campaign to entice Mr Obama to follow in the footsteps of President John F. Kennedy who visited Galway City and addressed Eyre Square, neither the US President or Queen Elizabeth will come to Galway.
And while places like Dublin, Cork, Tipperary, Kildare and Offaly will receive maximum exposure, Fáilte Ireland West says Galway’s tourism industries will be provided with a “huge boost” as a result of the exposure. “There will be a big knock-on effect for everyone, including Galway,” said Fiona Monaghan of Fáilte Ireland West.
“Money couldn’t buy the exposure Ireland will get from the visits and Fáilte Ireland couldn’t afford to pay for the media exposure we are going to get in our top two tourist markets. These are huge opportunities, and it’s hard to quantify the return in visitor numbers that will result – it will be very big,” she said.
Galway is certainly not losing out, she said, because many of the hundreds of reporters who are here for the visits will have extended trips, courtesy of Fáilte Ireland and they will be visiting Galway City and Connemara in particular. This will lead to exposure in media outlets throughout the world in travel articles and reviews.
All media outlets are briefed on the assets of Galway and the west during their stay and the cultural and natural beauty of the county has been emphasised. CNN, for example, is broadcasting Mr Obama’s visit live and this will be interspersed with three-minute TV clips promoting Ireland and Galway City and Connemara are prominent in these.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.
Appeal for information following Portumna crash
Date Published: 08-May-2013
Gardai are appealing for witnesses following a single vehicle crash at the Portumna bridge this morning.
The road from Nenagh to Loughrea reopened shortly after 11 this morning following the completion of a technical exam.
Four men were travelling in a van when they hit the Portumna bridge around 6:30 this morning.
Gardaí, ambulance and two units of Portumna fire services rushed to the scene, and one of the men was taken to Portiuncula hospital in Ballinasloe.
He is being treated for head injuries, which have been described by Gardaí as serious.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Portumna Garda station on 09-097-42060
President Higgins among GMIT’s first ever honorary fellowships
Date Published: 10-May-2013
GMIT is to honour seven outstanding individuals including President Michael D Higgins with Honorary Fellowships at a special ceremony later this month.
It’s the first time in the 40 year history of the Institute the Governing Body of GMIT has decided to award honorary fellowships.
The GMIT Honorary Fellowships will be conferred at the g Hotel in the city this day two weeks Friday 24 May at 2.30pm in front of 200 invited guests.
Galway commuters hold their breath as LRC intervenes in bus strike
Date Published: 13-May-2013
Galway commuters are holding their breath as there has been a potential breakthrough in the Bus Eireann dispute, as both sides have agreed to talks at the Labour Relations Commission.
The LRC intervened this afternoon, on day two of strike action that has seen 95 per cent of bus services disrupted across the country.
The LRC’s Director of Conciliation Services, Kevin Foley, says the National Bus and Rail Union and the company have agreed to meet for mediated talks at 8 this evening.