The upgraded and re-routed St Kevin’s Way trail has been officially opened. It is hoped that the upgraded trail will bring new tourists to the area along with enhancing the walk for locals.
Wicklow County Council carried out the work in conjunction with Coillte and the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS), with assistance from the St Kevin’s Way Management committee,
Cathaoirleach of Wicklow County Council, Cllr Pat Kennedy, remarked: “Up until this point this trail has had minimal investment, thanks to funding under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme this scheme has been elevated to an amazing standard”.
Speaking at the opening, the Chief Executive of Wicklow County Council, Mr Frank Curran, commented: “In Wicklow we are blessed to have so many areas of outstanding scenic beauty on our doorstep, the upgrade at St Kevin’s Way will enhance the area for both locals and tourists”.
Minister of State for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Mr Malcolm Noonan TD, in a statement welcomed the development of the long-distance walking route, St. Kevin’s Way, stating that “the NPWS of my Department have worked in conjunction with Wicklow County Council to deliver an upgrade and reroute of the St Kevin’s Way, a long-distance walking route in County Wicklow”.
He offered special thanks to a member of his own NPWS staff, Ann Fitzpatrick, Ranger, who worked hard to manage and deliver the Wicklow Mountains National Park project to the highest of standards.
Minister Noonan continued: “A large section of the walk traverses Wicklow Mountains National Park, and through their hard work, members of the NPWS and Wicklow County Council have taken a substantial section of this walk away from the public road, installed a footbridge, built a new section of trail and replaced several hundred meters of boardwalk. As restrictions begin to ease, I am delighted that these works will provide safer access to all of us as we walk and hike the beautiful routes in our National Park throughout the summer months”.
Funding was secured from the Department of Community & Rural Development under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme to the amount of €160,000.
Acknowledging this significant investment in the project, Cllr Kennedy paid tribute to the Minister for Community & Rural Development, Heather Humphreys TD, and her officials for their continued investment in the Garden County.