• Cyril McAree

Fáilte Ireland Uncovers Local History Across Ireland’s Ancient East


Fáilte Ireland will bring to life the history and stories behind some of the oldest towns in Ireland’s Ancient East through a series of newly updated Historic Town trail signs around the region. Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Brendan Griffin T.D., officially unveiled the new Historic Towns signs in Leighlinbridge, Co. Carlow – the first of four towns to have the signage installed.

PIC SHOWS : Minister of State for Tourism and Sport Brendan Griffin T.D. officially unveiled the new Historic Towns signs in Leighlinbridge, Co. Carlow yesterday – the first of four towns to have the signage installed, he is pictured with Pat Deering T.D. Jenny De Saulles, Head of Ireland's Ancient East with Fáilte Ireland and Martin Nevin, Local Historian. Working with local authorities and historians, Fáilte Ireland has uncovered interesting and lesser known stories from each area’s history. This content will be displayed through wayfinding, interpretation, photography, maps and other signage across each town. The Historic Towns initiative, designed to encourage visitors to stay longer and explore the wider region – as well as Leighlinbridge - have also been strategically placed in Athy (Co. Kildare), Carrickmacross (Co. Monaghan), and Wexford town. A further seven towns across the Ireland’s Ancient East region will have signage installed and updated over the coming months. Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Brendan Griffin T.D., said: “I’m delighted to unveil the new Historic Town signage at Leighlinbridge, which I know will really bring the storied past of this charming town to life. I’m pleased that Fáilte Ireland has worked so closely with Carlow County Council and local historians to bring to life the lesser known history of the area. This scheme will allow locals and visitors alike to properly appreciate and engage with the area’s unique heritage.” Fáilte Ireland’s Head of Ireland’s Ancient East, Jenny DeSaulles, said: “There is a growing tourism trend for exploring local areas and uncovering their unique stories. That’s why at Fáilte Ireland we’ve worked closely with local historians to bring to life the hidden history of each town. History and storytelling are at the core of the Ireland’s Ancient East brand and the signage unveiled in Historic Towns today will really help to shape engaging visitor experiences. “Vitally, it will also encourage visitors to explore different parts of Ireland’s Ancient East and to stay in the region for longer. We look forward to unveiling more signage in Historic Towns across Ireland’s Ancient East over the coming months.” Fáilte Ireland has identified a number of strategic objectives and priorities for Ireland’s Ancient East which are specific to using storytelling interpretation to create brilliant experiences and in turn to deliver economic benefits. These objectives are to:

  • Deliver engaging world class visitor experiences that make Ireland’s living and historical culture accessible through the use of authentic stories as a differentiator;

  • Create and deliver unique visitor experiences based on “living” the history;

  • Provide the visitor with interpretation in the first language of the target audience, i.e. in English, French, German, Spanish and Italian;

  • Increase the length of time visitors spend in Ireland’s Ancient East and the amount of money they spend there;

  • Encourage overseas visitors to stay beyond the traditional tourism season and to visit longer.


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