Donegal celebrates regeneration and addresses dereliction

News /

Unveiling of Heritage Council and Department of Housing funded regeneration project coincides with conference on house dereliction.

Derelict in Donegal and Beyond, a conference addressing the issue of house dereliction in Ireland, takes place in Letterkenny on Friday 22 July. Organised by Letterkenny Tidy Towns and Letterkenny Cathedral Quarter and featuring a range of expert speakers from the sector, the conference will be of interest to anybody with a stake in the issue of house dereliction in Ireland.

On the same day, Letterkenny is also celebrating the conclusion of an urban regeneration project, funded through the Heritage Council’s and Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage’s Historic Towns Initiative scheme. This project, driven by Letterkenny Cathedral Quarter, has overseen the transformation of the previously derelict area of Church Lane; the oldest part of Letterkenny town.

Secretary of the town’s Cathedral Quarter Project Donnan Harvey said:

“It is appropriate that both a conference on dereliction and the unveiling of a transformed Church Lane should take place on the same day. With around 3,000 people looking for housing in Donegal, the issues confronting us are challenging but we must remain optimistic. The work done on Church Lane proves that dereliction does not have to be a permanent feature and that the answer to dereliction issues is partnership between local community, local authorities, and government agencies.”

Chief Executive of the Heritage Council Virginia Teehan said:

“The Heritage Council is proud to be associated with the excellent work done on the regeneration of Church Lane through its Historic Towns Initiative Scheme. The project provides a fine example of what can be achieved when dedicated individuals and groups take positive steps. We are very much involved in the issue of addressing dereliction and the conference in Letterkenny is important, timely, and is sure to generate fruitful discussion.”

The conference will be opened by Minister of State for Local Government and Planning Peter Burke TD, and will include contributions from:

  • Colm Murray (Architectural Officer with the Heritage Council)
  • Frank O’Connor and Jude Sherry (Anois Agecny)
  • Dr. Karen Keaveney (Assistant Professor of Rural Development at UCD and a member of their Centre for Irish Towns)
  • Joe Gallagher (Donegal County Heritage officer)
  • Lee Gooch (Broadcaster)
  • Kyle Thompson (New Gate Arts Centre)
  • Donnan Harvey (Secretary of the Cathedral Quarter)

The conference starts at 11 in Dillon’s Hotel, Letterkenny. Tickets are available to purchase from here.