Castlewellan Trails Welcomed by South Down Politicians

The new Castlewellan trails 0pened up on Wednesday 13 November have been welcomed by a number of local politicians.

South Down MLA Seán Rogers (SDLP) has welcomed the official launch of the trails within Castlewellan Forest Park and Bunkers Hill.

dn_screenSpeaking after the launch Mr Rogers said: “Castlewellan has so much to offer – not only for locals but tourists alike. A healthier lifestyle is now the norm for most so demand for outdoor recreation activities has rocketed and I’m delighted to see Castlewellan responding in such a positive way.

“The opening up of Bunkers Hill Wood – its family trails and play equipment has exceeded all expectations in terms of its popularity. The Peace Maze has been refurbished and new walking trails within Castlewellan Park have been established.

“I wish to pay tribute to Down Council, the Forest Service and Outdoor Recreation for funding the projects and bringing them to fruition.”

“Down District  SDLP Councillor Laura Devlin added:” “I was delighted to attend the launch with my friend and predecessor – former Councillor Eamonn ONeill and to hear first-hand a number of Officers paying tribute to his vision for Castlewellan. It was Eamonn who had suggested opening up Bunkers Hill Wood to the community and it was also under his guise that the Peace Maze project got off the ground. This is just an example of his hard work, dedication and his commitment to the local community.

“Bunkers Hill in particular in very close to my home and whether it is 630am or 9pm – these trails are being utilised which is just fantastic.”

South Down MLA Chris Hazzard (Sinn Féin)commented: “Sinn Féin have championed the recreational potential in our local area over many years.

“Our forest parks, mountains and lakes are world class attractions for their beauty, and we are now finally beginning to realise their attractions for recreational activity.

“These trails will attract significant tourism for our local economy and I would thank Michelle O’Neill for investing in their development.”

Alliance Councillor Patrick Clarke has also warmly welcomed the completion and launch of new trails within Castlewellan Forest Park and Bunkers Hill and the refurbishment of the Peace Maze.

Councillor Clarke said: “The recently completed multi-use family trail and play trail at Bunkers Hill in Castlewellan has already in its short inception been a tremendous success with the walking trails being used daily by large numbers of walkers of all ages. The new natural play trail has also captured the imagination of many young children who are enjoying the new recreation facility at Bunkers Hill.”

“As a frequent user of Castlewellan Forest Park, I have also been very impressed with the newly completed walking trails at Castlewellan Forest Park including the Slievenaslaat Walk Trail which must give some of the most impressive views of the Mourne Mountains.”

“The refurbishment of the peace maze including new walkway and entrance signage has allowed this popular peace maze to be enjoyed by the many visitors to Castlewellan Forest Park and to also take in the great views of Castlewellan.”

“Both trails at Castlewellan Forest Park and Bunkers Hill have now fully utilised the use of natural woodland space following the felling of diseased trees.”