Minister of State Kevin 'Boxer' Moran outside Ormond Castle.
Carrick-on-Suir's historic Ormond Castle was officially re-opened yesterday (Tuesday) by Minister of State for the OPW Kevin 'Boxer' Moran at a ceremony at the Castle attended by a large gathering of local political, business, tourism and community representatives.
The Castle re-opened to visitors following an extensive two and a half year refurbishment involving an investment of an estimated €750,0000.
Minister Moran praised OPW staff for the great job they have done in restoring the Castle to its original splendour.
"The project that has been carried out is a significant achievement and a testament to the skill of the OPW staff and apprentices that worked on it," he said.
The Minister said the re-opening of the Castle now offered a huge opportunity for a major increase in tourism in Carrick-on-Suir.
"With the support of local people and the various groups which the OPW has been working with, I am confident that there is a very bright future ahead.”
Works carried out on the Castle included the complete rendering of its exterior walls, the upgrading of electrical systems, fire and security systems and installation of underfloor heating.
The project also involved the consolidation and conservation of historic internal plasterwork, scaffold and minor roof repairs, upgrading of existing storm water services, upgrade of the sewerage system and refurbishment of visitor and guide facilities.
Minister Moran confirmed that OPW, with the assistance of Fáilte Ireland, has plans to invest further in the site at Carrick-on-Suir by recreating the historic landscaped garden to the front of the property as part of a Phase 2 project and by providing Interpretation for visitors throughout the site.
Following the re-opening ceremony, the Minister was given a guided tour of the Castle, which is regarded as Ireland's best example of an Eliabethan manor. Guided tours of the Castle are free to the public until July 31.
Full report and photos in next week’s edition of The Nationalist in shops on Wednesday, August 2.