Newry Mourne and Down District Council’s AONB and Geopark have been successful in their funding application to DAERA’s Environment Fund Strategic Strand as a consequence of COVID-19 impacts.
The Council has received £30,000 for projects in the Ring of Gullion to be completed by the end of March 2021.
One of the projects will focus on Slieve Gullion Special Area of Conservation (SAC) path corridor maintenance due to increased erosion from additional footfall. Due to lockdown, more visitors are using Slieve Gullion SAC for recreation. There has been an increase in path braiding, and path creep – these usually occur when more people are using the path. This additional funding will repair the path corridor in three places where the most significant erosion has occurred since lockdown.
Another project will focus on the Mullaghbane River Walk which is a vital link for the community to the local shop and pharmacy enabling them to bypass a narrow busy road. Due to the coronavirus, this link is even more important than ever. The river walk has being in place for a number of years, however it poses a risk to the increased users due to dead trees and over hanging branches along the river walk. This project will focus on removing these over hanging branches and providing COVID-19 message.