Fianna Fáil TD for Cavan-Monaghan Niamh Smyth has called on the Minister for Rural & Community Development to ensure that funding is allocated under the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund to Hope Castle and the Market House in Castleblayney.
An application has been submitted by Monaghan County Council setting out four key objectives for Lough Muckno Park, including the Market House including a masterplan up to 2029.
Deputy Smyth explained, “I was made aware of this application last year. At that stage I requested an update from the Minister. Since then the Market House has fallen into serious disrepair. I understand that a steel frame has been ordered by Monaghan County Council to secure the building. Once this has been erected, a construction survey will be carried out of the building to determine its future. This iconic building needs investment and needs it now!”
“Not alone this, but the monument of the legendary Big Tom which was unveiled next to this building last September, has had to be covered up as a consequence. This is simply not acceptable. It’s sad to see this happen as it has been a massive draw to the town for tourism since it was unveiled last year. I am calling on Minister Michael Ring to allocate the funding necessary to bring these beautiful buildings back to their original condition.”
“Monaghan County Council has submitted a very detailed application to the Department of Rural & Community Development for funding so that a masterplan for Lough Muckno Park, a business case and all relevant surveys can be carried out in order to attract potential investors.”
“I have followed up again with Minister Ring to establish the status of these applications and I have been told that that they are currently being assessed with successful applicants due to be announced this month. I am hopeful that the Minister will see the immense potential for this project and I will continue to engage with the Department on it”.