Longford firms need to plan for Center Parcs

Calls for foresight over Center Parcs plans

Longford firms need to plan for Center Parcs
By Aisling Kiernan

Businesses in Longford need to gear themselves up for the Center Parcs development which is coming on stream in 2019, this week’s meeting of Longford County Council heard.

Calls were made for the local enterprise board to get involved so that companies associated with the production and manufacturing sector could supply the necessary goods and services required by the UK based outdoor recreation company which is establishing its latest state of the art facility at Newcastle Wood in Ballymahon.

Cllr Micheal Carrigy (FG) proposed the motion that the local authority would seek approval from the Department to employ additional staff to assist the head of Enterprise to help existing and start-up Longford companies secure contracts from Center Parcs.

“I want to see as many Longford companies as possible serving this site and I think that Michael Nevin from the Longford Enterprise Board is the right man to take the lead on this,” Cllr Carrigy said.

The meeting then heard that the time had come to start engaging with local companies and establish their needs so that when Center Parcs was ready to do business, Longford businesses would have the goods.

“As far as I am concerned all of this can be achieved working closely with the local authority, but this is something that cannot be put on the long finger - we must initiate it now,” said Cllr Carrigy.

Fianna Fáil local area representative, Cllr Seamus Butler warned that local businesses would “need to scale up” in order to service Center Parcs.

“In fact there will be a number of startups as well out of this but the reality is that the ground work will have to be done, or nothing will happen; Center Parcs is coming on stream in 2019 and we need to be ready,” he said.

“The groundwork needs to be done sooner rather than later.”

Cllr Martin Mulleady (FF) then added, “I agree; we should not give any of this to Westmeath”.