History in the making as Lanesboro goes digital

Aisling Kiernan

Reporter:

Aisling Kiernan

Email:

aisling.kiernan@longfordleader.ie

Wi-Fi

Anne Lee, Sheila Healy, Nora O'Farrell, CE Longford Co Council Paddy Mahon, Christine Collins, Minister Denis Naughten; Cathaoirleach Luie McEntire, Cllr Mark Casey and Brigid Mullooly.

It was a historic occasion in Lanesboro on two fronts at the weekend when a brand new national initiative was launched there by the Minister for Communications, Climate Change & the Environment Denis Naughten TD.

The initiative saw free WiFi launched in the Shannonside town and is the first of its kind to be rolled out in Ireland.

VEI Ltd announced the successful installation of WiFi on Saturday where a large crowd gathered for the event.

“It was a great experience and privilege to work with the local council and Cllr Mark Casey on this initiative and it is something we are looking forward to rolling out in other towns across the country,” Colm Redmond, Business Development Executive, VEI Ltd told those gathered, before pointing out that while other companies had endeavoured to install town WiFi, nothing would compare to the service VEI would provide.

“What we have done is installed a complete free WiFi and interactive digital signage; this is huge.

“The only other place to have this kind of facility is New York.”

Meanwhile, Cllr Mark Casey added, “VEI are a huge company and Lanesboro is now the first town in Ireland to have this to call upon.

“This is absolutely huge for tourism, for information, for young people and for everyone who enters the town; it's a game-changer for Lanesboro and my plan is to roll it out in Ballymahon”.

The local area representative in Lanesboro went on to encourage users to upload pictures, write reviews and generally comment across all Social Media options including Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram about their time spent in Lanesboro and their experience of the wonderful amenities there.

Cathaoirleach Cllr Luie McEntire then said this latest initiative indicated the “progressive and forward-thinking town” that Lanesboro is.

“You have embraced technology,” he said, before pointing to the fact that the free town WiFi would also assist in addressing “the so-called digital divide”.

“You are creating opportunities for those who might not otherwise be able to have internet access at home; it is also promoting and supporting tourism as free WiFi services in an area is seen as a vital link for tourism.

“We in Longford Co Council are striving to have a central and connected digital Longford and are committed to providing all our citizens with equal access to the opportunities of a digital world.”

Visitors, the local community and tourists can also download the TownApp – www.townapp.ie - available on Andriod/iOS - which also promotes local businesses including restaurants, accommodation, bars, hair salons, butchers, newsagents, supermarket, etc.