Origins of North East Inishowen Tourist & Development Co Ltd
The origins of this group lay in a meeting in McNamara’s Hotel, January 1990. The E.S.B. had decided to close forty shops nation wide including the Moville Branch. There was widespread consternation at the closure of the shop, which had been operational in Moville for over forty years. The large attendance had many concerns about the area in general loosing their E.S.B. Shop. Many people spoke at the meeting and arising out of it a Committee was formed to be the Action Committee to establish what could be done in relation to the closure. Seven people were picked then met immediately after the meeting and a committee was formed as follows:
Chairman Sean McBride,
Vice President, Daniel Doherty,
Treasurer, Stewart Norris
Secretary, Leo McCauley
Other Committee members were
Liam McCormack, Greencastle
In early February 1990 the committee went to the E.S.B. Head Office, Fitzwilliam Square, to meet the then head of E.S.B Paddy Moriarty, along with local representatives, Paddy Harte and James McDaid. A fairly well rehearsed submission was made to the E.S.B and Mr. Moriarty said he would consider our position. Not long afterwards the E.S.B. announced that the closures would relate to only thirty-eight shops, and the two that received the reprieve included Moville. This was a very successful move and the newly formed group decided to keep meeting and channel their energies into local issues, and hopefully be just as successful. The group then met regularly and eventually in 1991 decided the best course of action was to incorporate as a Company. In July 1991 North East Inishowen Tourist and Development Co Ltd was incorporated. A number of new members were taken on at that stage namely:
Gerry Lynott jnr
Since then the Company has successfully traded in the community development/economic area.
In 1991, the first association with Fás was formed when a scheme was organised with a view to clear up the green and to regenerate the old Putting Green. This successful venture can still be seen today and we are now currently on the eleventh successive Fás scheme with a lot of good work being done over the years, including
- a stone wall at the entrance of the town coming in from Derry.
- a joint effort with Greencastle & District Community Group to join up the shore front paths from Moville to Greencastle.
- many improvements along the shore front walk, including Summer Seats, Tables, Picnic Areas, etc.,
- general up-keep of the area (in close association with the Tidy Town Committee which has coincided with a steady increase in National Points awarded to Moville over the last many years.)
In 1993 it was decided to obtain funding from the IRDL to publish the first Moville Area Development Plan. Sheamus Canavan Associates were hired and in 1994 The Moville Area Strategy was published. This was a 100% household and business survey which asked the local people in Moville and surrounding areas what were the burning issues which required attention. The three main issues which were highlighted by this plan (it is interesting to note how over the next 10 years they became addressed) were:
1. The need for industrial/Commercial incubator units in the Moville North East Inishowen area.
2. The need for a water based tourism/commercial activity, possibly in front of Moville or Carrickarory Pier.
3. The need for environmental improvements in Moville Town Centre area.
When this plan was published in late 1994, NEITDC were able to use this as a vehicle for obtaining funding to achieve any of these goals. Successfully in 1996, NEITDC as part of the IFI border towns and villages initiative were awarded money to regenerate the old Corn Store building which lay derelict for many years, to the tune of IR£250,000.
Also as part of the IFI award the County Council was given IR£100,00 if they would match it with another IR£100,000, to regenerate Moville Market Square. These environmental improvements were put through a lengthy consultative process with the Council Architects and the local people with a number of public meetings held.
As a result in June 1997, the official opening of both projects occurred. Mr John Hume and Mr Pat The Cope Gallagher both MEP’s, in association with local TD’s, Council Officials and members of NEITDC opened the new Corn Store Apartments, and the newly designed Moville Market Square, to date had been the greatest achievement of NEITDC.
In 1998 NEITDC published a further development plan, which prepared by Peter Quinn Associates which also built on the need for water based tourism project at Carrickarory, also for the need for commercial incubator units, this essentially reinforced the findings of the 1994 Plan, and armed with both plans the group proceeded to lobby for further development in the area. Ongoing has been the development at Carrickarory and it has been a long lengthy process, which has probably been in train for the past 6 or 7 years.
Also early in 2000 the group received funding to locate industrial units at a site on the Malin Road, Moville, however circumstances went against the group and the site was no longer available, However there was a chance that the funding could have been diverted to a Greenfield site if that could be obtained. Early in 2001 members of the group, Leo McCauley, Andrew Ward and Stewart Norris met the County Manager, Michael McLoone in McNamara’s Hotel, and persuaded him that if the Council donated a green field site at Glencrow we would then be able to locate 10 industrial units. Very shortly afterwards the green light was given by the Council, and with additional funding from IFI, Enterprise Ireland Peace & Reconciliation and IRDL substantial progress had been made, in the fact, that the units are now completed, to the ongoing success of NEITDC.
Recently, in late 2003, Intereg and IFA have also given national approval to the location of floating pontoon marina at Carrickarory. This is a long way short of the multimillion pound, fully permanent 200 birth marina envisaged, but with modern technology it is an excellent beginning to establishing a marina for the Carrickarory pier. Hopefully this will come to fruition later in 2004.
In late 2003 the Company decided that perhaps another issue outstanding in the area was a local Web Site. In mid 2003 the Company in association with locally based Software Design Company, Iontas Creative Solutions have been working on the establishment of a new web site movilleinishowen.com. If you are reading this you will now know that we have finally gone live. The web site is designed and operated initially by North East Inishowen Co is for the local community and hopefully will operate with participation and use of local people both living in the area and living abroad. It is the Company’s hope that this will become the reference site for all people with any grá for the North East Inishowen area.
On a sad note we lost one of our members Gerry Lynott in 1997. May he rest in peace.
The current members of the company are Leo McCauley (Chairman), Daniel Doherty (vice chairman), Michael Gillen (secretary), Stewart Norris (Treasurer), Harry Gillen (Treasurer), Mary McCauley, Andrew Ward, Liz Norris, Michael Keogh, Dan McGuinness, Liam McCormick
Stewart Norris passed away 2006.