Mayor of Drogheda Cllr. Frank Godfrey at the 2018 Irish Maritime Festival.
Drogheda’s Mayor, Cllr. Frank Godfrey has come up with several suggestions aimed at increasing tourism in the town.
The first of these ideas is to open Laurence’s Gate at weekends for the summer months from May to September.
Cllr. Godfrey points out that Laurence Gate is always booked out when it opens for special events, such as the Fleadh and the Arts Festival and says it should be open on a regular basis.
“We should plan now to have it open and carry out any Health and Safety works immediately” he said. “It’s the people’s Gate and it has been shamefully neglected for decades!
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“It would be a great boost for tourism to have it open. Most Drogheda people have never had the opportunity to go up to the top of the Gate! It shouldn’t be like a Lottery to try to get into St Laurence’s Gate!”
Frank also suggests that pedestrianising part of West Street – between Stockwell Street and The Tholsel – should also be looked at.
‘Pedestrianising the centre of town worked very well for the Fleadh, and based on that, we should look at doing that on a 3-month trial basis at least from 10.30am – 6pm daily.”
Godfrey has called on Louth County Council engineers to look at the feasibility of both and report back to the Council.
Finally, Frank has called on Louth County Council to engage a full-time professional Events Manager to organise a number of major events in Drogheda running throughout the year, saying that it would result in a major tourist boom.
“A festival on the lines of the Rose of Tralee or the Cork Jazz Festival, Galway Arts Festival or the many in Waterford every month of the year, would work well here in Drogheda,” he said.
“We have demonstrated that we can host a major event like the Fleadh, so let’s build on this now that the momentum is going. It would be a massive draw for the town.”
Suggesting a sustainable festival for Drogheda, Mayor Godfrey said we could host a Boyne Salmon International Festival on an on-going basis.