Ballycastle ‘again left out’ - McKay

NORTH Antrim Sinn Féin MLA Daithí McKay has criticised what he says was the Environment Minister’s decision to “again overlook” Ballycastle for derelict site funding.

He was speaking after Alex Attwood confirmed that he would put in a similar funding bid in for Derry city as he did for Portrush and Portstewart but did not feel Ballycastle merited the same focus.

Mr McKay was speaking after criticising the Minister on the floor of the Assembly.

Mr McKay said: “The failure by government agencies and now the Environment Minister to ‘remember’ about Ballycastle when promoting tourism has led to the town missing out once again with no additional funding being put aside for the town.

“Over £400,000 was given to Portrush and Portstewart and whilst that money is needed to help improve the environment there it is equally needed in Ballycastle as one of the main north coast hub towns. He has also put forward an application for a similar intervention in Derry City ahead of 2013 and plans to bid for that funding in June, The question remains why does he not make a similar bid for Ballycastle?

“We have a world class tourism product here in Ballycastle and the surrounding area but unfortunately some politicians seem doomed to repeat the exclusion of the town in key initiatives the same way many agencies have done in the past.”