Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council is pleased to launch its new combined experience ‘Royal Hillsborough and Historic Moira’. This initiative designed to boost the tourism and hospitality economy within these two rural villages involving 40 local businesses.
Funded by the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA), Rural Tourism Collaborative Experience (RTCE) programme and the council this new programme has and will continue to integrate local authentic food and drink businesses with tourism providers in Royal Hillsborough and Moira. It will drive footfall, sales, awareness and dwell time in these areas through combined visitor experiences and itineraries.
Speaking about the programme, Vice Chair of the council’s Development Committee, Councillor Hazel Legge said: “We are delighted with the response to the programme and to have so many interested and engaged partners is a testament to the success of the tourism and hospitality sector in these rural areas. Moira and Royal Hillsborough are unique gems, and it is important that we support, encourage, and celebrate the wonderful offerings already in place, as well as drive future collaboration.
“I would like to thank our local businesses for their engagement with our council officers and for the feedback they provided to help shape this programme. Together we have formed new alliances and been educated on the business offering of both areas. A visitor no longer wants a run of the mill trip – it’s all about having experiences; something different, memorable and impressive.
“With the wealth of bars and restaurants, accommodation options and tourist attractions, there is so much on offer; whether you want a one-day trip or a three night stay. This tourism concept will bring to the masses the wonders of our council’s charming rural areas, its people and place.”
As part of the programme new bespoke itineraries have been created to showcase the best of what the areas have to offer. These suggested plans give top tips and ideas of new things to experience, adventure to new places, and sample some of the best cuisine these rural areas have to offer.
Speaking about the programme, Lynne McCabe who owns Ralph’s Moira and Lisnacurran in Royal Hillsborough said: “The COVID-19 pandemic created an explosion of growth and new tourism thanks to the support of the staycation market. We need to maximise on this as a springboard for when overseas tourism markets return. We are thankful to be placed in the hub of Northern Ireland, so close and accessible to everywhere being located right on the Belfast to Dublin corridor. I look forward to the programme bringing the best of the areas together and showcasing what we have on offer.”
The programme will be supported by the roll out of outdoor advertising, digital communications and storytelling that showcase some of the participating businesses, highlighting their business successes.
A new, easy to navigate webpage has been created to help visitors plan their next day trip, staycation, or adventure. Visit to www.visitlisburncastlereagh.com/royal-hillsborough-and-historic-moira to learn more about the programme and see the raft of experience itineraries on offer.