A squirrel in Woodstock Gardens. Photo: Brendan Marnell.
Woodstock Gardens in Inistioge is to benefit from a €200,000 funding boost specifically for Woodstock House, under the 2016 Rural Economic Development Zones (REDZ).
The announcement was made tonight by Fine Gael TD John Paul Phelan and local councillor Michael Doyle, both of whom have been campaigning to get more funding for the south Kilkenny beauty spot and visitor attraction. The funding aims to stimulate economic development in rural towns and their hinterlands.
“This is the latest in a series of funding schemes which have been announced by the Government which aims to boost economic activity and improve living standards here in Kilkenny and across rural Ireland," said Deputy Phelan.
“Under the 2016 REDZ scheme, just over €5.3 million is being approved to 41 projects nationwide, with €1.9 million going to projects in the North and Western Region, €1.3 million for projects in the Southern Region and €2.1 million for projects in the Eastern and Midlands Region.
Cllr Doyle, who was instrumental in setting up a steering group to advance the Gardens' interests, says that the REDZ scheme aims to improve links between rural towns and their hinterlands to stimulate activity at a local level.
"The funding will provide for a new public car park in Inistioge to service the community and the tourists that visit, also developing pathways into the village and connecting to existing river walks and to the green area down at the bridge," he said.
"This is fantastic news for the local community making parking for school much safer and also developing good facilities for those who visit Inistioge and Woodstock. Woodstock will gain extra signage and connectivity with Inistioge and improve visitor facilities up in Woodstock."
Woodstock is also to benefit from an increased allocation from Kilkenny County Council next year, as outlined in the local authority's Budget 2017 (see Wednesday's Kilkenny People).