Save Exploris – Idea Generation
Portaferry Exploris is under threat of closure and needs a quick solution pending the development of a longer term strategy for sustainable survival and development.
Neither Ards Borough Council or the NI Executive have an appetite to step into the breech and help protect this popular tourist and community icon.
So, just to float an idea (ideas are free!), if the Portaferry Exploris needed a cash lift from its 25,000 supporters on Facebook, how many would dig deep?
To keep it going a year until a commercial strategy is put together, I understand £600,000+ is needed. That is equivalent to 6000 loyal fans of Exploris coughing up £100 each. Or 25% of those who Likes on Facebook.
This should be feasible. With a proper marketing strategy such an innovative scheme would catch the imagination and give the people of Ards and indeed Northern Ireland something to be really proud of. Six weeks are left and the clock is ticking, and Ards Borough Council has indicated that it is prepared to close the doors at Exploris.
And Stormont has said ‘No!’ to support following a recent Executive Committee meeting.
An adventurous solution is needed.
Raising local funds will lever cash from grant bodies – it can be done. What we need is to explore all options and ideas. A community stakeholder fund set up in the short-term would wed the community to Exploris in such a way that it takes on a new dynamic and energy.
Being a Friend of Exploris would have a special meaning.
It could be the beginning of a new dawn for Portaferry. If no strategy succeeds, Exploris will close.
Please feel free to comment of my Facebook Page – or add an idea of your own: