Longford is not being omitted from Hidden Heartlands brand, insist tourism chiefs

Liam Cosgrove

Reporter:

Liam Cosgrove

Email:

liam.cosgrove@longfordleader.ie

‘Yours to Uncover’: Longford to feature in major marketing campaign for Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands

Fáilte Ireland chiefs have insisted Longford will play a prominent part in the marketing of its Hidden Heartlands brand.

Tourism bosses have reiterated their pledge to ensure Longford plays a leading part in the rollout of Ireland's Hidden Heartlands brand.

It comes after recent comments from a number of local politicians over Longford's omission from a television advert to signal the launch of the concept.

Fine Gael Cllr Peggy Nolan was among the most critical as she questioned why a clutch of neighbouring counties had featured while Longford had been left out.

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“Leitrim got two beautiful shows on that ad, so did Roscommon, so did Westmeath and yet we weren’t even included in that at all, so from that, Ireland’s hidden heartland model is still very much hidden and I am very, very upset about it,” she told a recent meeting of Longford County Council.

However, the State's National Tourism Development Authority, responded by insisting Longford was very much part of its plans to highlight its new tourism model.

In a statement, Fáilte Ireland’s Director of Marketing, Niall Tracey said its multi-media brand awareness campaign, worth €1m, was scheduled to include a specially-commissioned radio advertisement featuring Clondra and the Royal Canal over the coming weeks.

“Our Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands brand has been incredibly well received by the industry and resonated strongly during research in our target markets,” said Mr Tracey.

“It is tapping into a growing tourism trend for soft activities by encouraging visitors to be ‘active in nature’ and to explore the region by going off the beaten tracks.

“The brand’s appeal also very much lies in its offer for visitors to get away from the stresses and pressures of modern life and to experience the tranquility of rural Ireland.

“Over the coming weeks, through our domestic brand awareness campaign, we will be reinforcing Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands as a key brand in the Irish tourism offering, and presenting Irish consumers with compelling reasons to consider Longford and the wider region for their future travel plans.”