Letterkenny’s Cathedral Quarter project is calling on the help of businesses and sponsors across the county to invest in the innovative and ground-breaking project. Since it was first established three years ago, the project has grown considerably and the Cathedral Quarter committee is looking to appoint a full-time administrator to continue the good work and fulfil the potential of the Cathedral Quarter area.
Paddy Friel, Cathedral Quarter Chairperson, believes that the Cathedral Quarter project presents an opportunity for Letterkenny and the greater northwest: “We envisage that Letterkenny’s Cathedral Quarter can have the same impact on the northwest as Galway’s Latin Quarter had on the West of Ireland. The Artisan Street of the Church Lane leads to some of Letterkenny’s most iconic buildings including St. Eunans Cathedral and Conwal Parish Church (1636), the town’s oldest building. The area has the potential to become a must-see attraction for those travelling along the Wild Atlantic Way and we need to ensure that the good work continues on a steady basis.”
“To date, we’ve had great support from local businesses and people for which we are very grateful. We have had some funding made available through Donegal County Council, but we need to appoint a full-time administrator to continue the work. So far, five businesses have opened in the Cathedral Quarter which was once a derelict road”, he added.
Local man and Cathedral Quarter secretary, Donnan Harvey has spearheaded the project and played a vital role in the regeneration of the Church Lane.
He was working under the TUS Scheme under DLDC Ltd but that has now come to an end. Earlier this month, he announced that he wouldn’t be able to continue in his role as no other funding has become available to support his efforts:
“I will be devastated to leave the project but unfortunately, if no wage is forthcoming early in the New Year then my participation in this project will come to a complete end. Over the last three years, I was charged with the responsibility of leading the project and never received any money for my efforts.
“The situation was manageable during the establishment phase of the project, but I just can’t go on. Like everybody else, I have bills and loans to pay.”
The aim of the Cathedral Quarter project is to regenerate the historical Church Lane street and surrounding areas to create a tourist attraction in the heart of Letterkenny that can be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.
Even though the project has received very little funding it has gathered significant momentum through social media and by the support of local, national and international media.
The project has featured on Irish TV, RTE’s Nationwide, Irish Independent, the Irish Times as well as Pittsburgh Radio station WEDO 810 AM.
The Cathedral Quarter committee has worked with many groups and different organisations including the Architectural Technology Department at the Letterkenny Institute, Letterkenny Tidy Towns, Duncan McLaren from Dedalus Architecture and Kevin Yeats to work on a development plan which was sent to the Donegal County Council this year.
“Many people have given their time and effort towards the regeneration project, but we really need the support of a sponsor or group of sponsors to keep the regeneration going. A full-time administrator would really help with the great work already done,” Paddy Friel concluded.
For more information on sponsorship and for queries contact Paddy Friel, Cathedral Quarter Chairperson on firstname.lastname@example.org. For updates visit the Church Lane – Cathedral Quarter Facebook page.