Almost 30,000 people have visited Curragh Chase and Ballyhoura forest parks since mid-June
There was a significant increase in visitors to Coillte-operated forest parks in Limerick following the lifting of travel restrictions, it has been revealed.
New figures show nearly 30,000 people visited Curragh Chase forest park and Ballyhoura forest park during June, July and early August. This was a significant increase on the number of visitors recorded in April and May and followed the easing of public health restrictions in early June.
During March and April, when strict Covid restrictions were in place, there was a large drop in visitor numbers as all non-essential travel was restricted.
However, since travel restrictions were lifted on June 19, visitors have begun returning to Coillte’s forests across Ireland.
“Since restrictions were eased and people could move more than five kilometres from their homes, we, unsurprisingly, saw an immediate large increase in visitor numbers. In fact, there was a significant increase in visitor numbers in two of Coillte’s Limerick forest parks since lockdown restrictions were eased in June, Curragh Chase and Ballyhoura. This continued, steady increase is heartening for all of those who cherish our amenities,” said Imelda Hurley, Chief Executive of Coillte.
“Access to nature is very important for the body, mind and spirit and that is why we work hard to maintain our tracks, parks and outdoor recreational facilities across Limerick. As we approach the end of August, and people take time to enjoy our forests, we ask that visitors continue to adhere to the social distancing rule of two metres when meeting others outside of their household, as well as the other guidelines on outdoor gatherings announced by the Government,” she added.
Ms Hurley has also thanked visitors to both forest park for adhering to the public health guidelines during the Covid-19 pandemic.
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