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Facelift for Fermanagh ahead of G8

The Lough Erne resort in Co Fermanagh will host G8 2013.

A million pounds worth of funding has been announced to tackle some of Northern Ireland's eyesores, with Fermanagh set to benefit ahead of the G8 summit.

Monday, 04 February 2013
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Environment Minister Alex Attwood said the money will be split between Co Fermanagh, Belfast, Lisburn, Moyle and Co Down, and will be used to clear up hundreds of derelict sites.

A total of £380,000 is earmarked for the Enniskillen area, where eight of the world's most powerful leaders will convene in June.

Belfast gets a package worth £300,000 for work on areas including Broadway and the Crumlin Road, while Lisburn city centre is set to benefit from a £160,000 spruce up, Moyle gets £100,000 and the Ballynahinch, Newcastle and Downpatrick areas get £60,000.

It comes after similar sums of money were spent on Portrush and Portstewart ahead of the Irish Open last year, and for Derry-Londonderry's year as City of Culture.

Fermanagh will be very much in the international spotlight as hosts for the G8 summit. This is a tremendous opportunity to showcase its charms to the world.

Alex Attwood

SDLP minister Mr Attwood said: "This is good news for many areas and a further step on my programme to attack dereliction across Northern Ireland.

"I was also keen to build on the very successful work done in Portrush and Portstewart last year. This funding means we will be able to extend the good work down the coast, removing eyesores in scenic coastal areas including Bushmills, Ballycastle, Waterfoot and Ballintoy.

"Lisburn is this year's European City of Sport, and our investment will see many areas in the city centre being given a real spruce up. Downpatrick, Ballynahinch and Newcastle will benefit from the funding boosting in these historic and seaside areas."

Fermanagh District Council Chief Executive Brendan Hegarty told UTV the move was "a phenomenal opportunity".

"We want to present the county as best as we can and promote it in terms of industry and tourism," he said.

The councils must spend the money allocated to them by the end of March.