It’s claimed Ennis is only scratching the surface of its tourism potential, and that more must be done to develop the town.
A brainstorming session is taking place today as part of plans to develop a Niche Destination Plan for Ennis, to ensure that the county town gets its share of the visitors coming to the Banner County.
A fifth of all hotel and B&B accommodation in Clare is in Ennis.
However, businesses in the town take in just 11% of Clare’s tourism revenue each year.
This stark figure was one of a number that has led Promote Ennis, a joint partnership between Ennis Chamber and the Ennis Municipal District, to seek out ways to promote the town to visitors from near and afar.
Today sees a brainstorming session take place at the Temple Gate Hotel, with tourism experts in attendance, but work has been ongoing behind the scenes for months, and funding is being sought through the LEADER Programme.
CEO of Ennis Chamber Margaret O’Brien explains what they’re hoping to achieve.
It’s hoped the plan will lead to a boost in visitor numbers sooner rather than later.
Ennis-based Repucon Consulting won the tendering process and will lead the project.
Its director Mark O’Connell says it won’t be plain sailing but there’s a lot of positives already.
Today’s event, dubbed a ‘visionary session’ has seen local stakeholders joined by leading experts in niche tourism, to brainstorm ideas on how best to go about promoting Ennis as a stand-alone destination.
International tourism consultant Professor Terry Stevens has decades of experience in the field and developed Ireland’s first ever tourism strategy 30 years ago.
He says it’s about making the most of what Ennis already has to offer.