Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport Michael Ring joined the Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council Councillor Michael Fleming and members of the Board of Enniscrone Leisure Ltd for the unveiling of new facilities at Waterpoint Enniscrone. The works were funded under the Government’s ‘Energy and Access Upgrade Projects Scheme’ and have greatly enhanced accessibility and energy efficiency at the Centre.
In his address Minister Ring said the significant energy savings had resulted from the installation of the new automated Wood Pellet Boiler system, and this would be an excellent model for other enterprises to study and imitate. The Minister commended the Board and staff at Waterpoint for the excellent service they had delivered to the Enniscrone community over the years, and as a frequent visitor to the Centre he had first hand experience of their friendly and welcoming nature. The Minister also commended County Manager Hubert Kearns and the staff of Sligo County Council for the quality of the funding submission to his Department, which had been completed in a very narrow timeframe.’ The Minister believes that Waterpoint is a key resource in promoting the West of Ireland in an increasingly competitive tourist market. ‘Sligo is a beautiful county with excellent amenities, and Waterpoint is one of the major attractions to encourage visitors to this region.’ The Minister had a special word of praise for the core of volunteers ‘who work tirelessly in communities all over the country, and they certainly showed great commitment and vision in this community to support their facility.’
The Cathaoirleach Councillor Michael Fleming also acknowledged the role of the local community. ‘The most important factor in this endeavour has been the local Enniscrone community, who have been the driving force in managing this facility since it opened its doors in 1998. Both in terms of significant local fund-raising and in providing a wealth of experience and expertise, the people of Enniscrone recognize the value of this amenity and have been the mainstay of its enduring success. The programme of works has been carefully planned and expertly delivered, and I would like to pay tribute to each and every member of the project team for carrying out this work with great professionalism.’
Minister John Perry said the outstanding work delivered by the Board and staff at Waterpoint was greatly appreciated by the wider Enniscrone community. He said when the Government see a major voluntary effort undertaken by local volunteers, they do all they can to support it. ‘The Board have an excellent track-record in terms of managing and operating this facility, and he said ‘Manager Mary Rafter and her staff can take great credit for making Waterpoint a success story, and with these enhancements, it will continue to progress and thrive in the years ahead.’
Joint Chair of Enniscrone Leisure Ltd Pat Maughan said it was a proud day for the Board, staff and the local community to welcome Minister Ring to formally unveil the facilities. ‘On this day of celebration for everyone associated with Waterpoint, we acknowledge the contribution of people who served to great effect in the past.’ Former Chairman Jim O'Regan was a inspirational figure who played a leading role in making the dream of Waterpoint become a reality, and Sligo County Council’s engineer Henry Rowan maintained his close interest in the facility after he retired from his post.’ Mr Maughan commended Sligo County Council for their support over the years, and thanked Michael Carty and Ray O'Grady for their valued assistance with the funding submission. ’ Pat also paid tribute to the members of the project team and the local contractors who worked tirelessly to ensure the work was carried out to an exceptional standard. ‘The evidence of their handiwork is clear for all to see, it is a credit to them, and their efforts are greatly appreciated by their customers and the local community.’
The Manager of Waterpoint Mary Rafter was MC for the event, and she thanked Minister Ring for taking a close personal interest in the programme of works and for visiting Enniscrone for the official opening. ‘The savings we can report following the installation off the wood-pellet boiler system have given a great lift to everyone at Waterpoint. The rewards were immediate. “Our spend on oil was at €1800 per week and the wood pellets cost €2500 every five weeks. This has generated a 60% saving on fuel alone. The other interventions i.e. glazing, wall and roof insulation will add further savings. A story such as ours should give other business hope. There are other forms heating supply and power that we all should embrace.
The capital grant marked a turning point for Waterpoint in that it has helped ensure the future viability of the centre, that has remained open all year round, unlike similar facilities; an added bonus was that the project providers were all sourced locally providing employment and business to the community.’ Mary concluded by saying that every member of staff takes great pride in this facility, and it provides wonderful encouragement to see facility enhanced in this way.’
- At the unveiling of new facilities at Waterpoint, Enniscrone were Hubert Kearns, Sligo County Manager, Councillor Dara Mulvey, Minister John Perry, Minister Michael Ring, Cathaoirleach Sligo County Council, Councillor Michael Fleming, Councillor Mary Barrett
- Minister Michael Ring unveils a plaque to mark the official opening of new faciliites at Waterpoint Enniscrone, accompanied by the Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council and special guests.
- Minister Michael Ring unveils a plaque to mark the official opening of new faciliites at Waterpoint Enniscrone
- Minsiter Ring addressing audience at Waterpoint Enniscrone