Building Your Business
Sustainable Tourism Enterprise Across the East Border Region

25 April 2013

PLATO EBR exhibits at the Cross Border Tourism Conference which took place in Ballymascanlon, Dundalk where the Guest Speakers talked about the topic of Sustainable Tourism and practical ideas for your business. The speakers covered:

  • Martin Carey - CEO of Mourne Hertiage Trust who highlighted the range of EU-funded projects developed under the Trust and in particular the importance of the European Charter which they were the first in the UK to receive back in 2002. In an ensuing debate Martin among others, acknowledged the concerns of farmers in the local area to geo-tourism and the potential for the area as a designated National Park.


  • Gerry Kelly - Senior Engineer in the infrastructure of Narrow Water Bridge, outlined the long history of funding applications for the Bridge and whilst funding has now been granted since October 2012, there is still much work to do to ensure the €17.369 million requested is spent on time and the bridge constructed by 2015.


  • Bernard Lane - Consultant, Writer and Lecturer – founder and editor of the high ranking Journal of Sustainable Tourism outlined his take on the need for sustainable rural tourism development and the  importance of three main factors: economic impacts, environmental and socio-cultural – he said environmental often gets over-played compared to the others but all are important especially for those trying to do business in the local region.


  • Alan Lauder - Chief Executive of Bird Watch Ireland gave an informative talk on the needs of birdwatchers outlining they are a varied bunch and the need for tourism providers to tap into this market.


  • Dr Kirstin Lemon - Landscape Geolgist informed the audience of the importance of geology to tourism and particular used the example of the Marble arch Caves for the surrounding catchment areas of Fermanagh, Cavan and Leitrim.


  • Peter Nash - An economist was the keynote speaker giving an insightful deion of the role of Tourism Ireland and in particular how it developed out of the Good Friday Agreement back in 2000. Of key importance in what he said was that Ireland is competing with places such as England (Cornwall and Devon) and Scotland rather than the continent. Ireland competes for social energisers (city breaks) and curiously cultural groupings (those reaching outside of the city and into the East Border Region for example). He felt Ireland was competing against experiences elsewhere therefore Ireland had to provide an experience plus something else e.g. if you are a B&B owner, offer the experience of Ulster Fry/Irish Breakfast but afterwards encourage guests to go for a walk and come back to watch you make brown bread and give them something to take home – it can be something as simple as that.


To download presentations from the event please click here

  • Cavan
  • Louth
  • Meath
  • Monaghon