Environment Minister Alex Attwood finds £18k for Dungiven

Alex Attwood.

Alex Attwood.

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Environment Minister Alex Attwood has done a ‘u-turn’ and found £18,000 to tackle the eyesore of derelict sites in Dungiven.

Mr Attwood’s decision to grant Limavady Borough Council the funding for the scheme has today been welcomed as the “right decision”.

Yesterday, the minister announced the towns getting a share of £1 million made available to tackle dereliction across the North, but Limavady did not made the cut.

However, earlier today Limavady Sinn Fein Councillor Sean McGlinchey said the minister told him on local radio that Limavady Council would get the money it had applied for after all.

“It’s the right decision and always was the right decision,” said the former Mayor. “It would have been better, however, if the minister had made the decision based on the merits of Council’s application, rather than what appears to have been political pressure, but no-one is here to play the blame game.

“Full credit to the minister for this u-turn, and I’m just delighted for the town and all the volunteers who have done their bit to tidy it up, including young children.”

Councillor McGlinchey said 15 sites/buildings from lower Main Street in Dungiven to the top of the town had been identified for improvement.

SDLP Councillor Michael Coyle - Mr Attwood’s party political colleague - said he was “very pleased there has been a turnaround and, no doubt, the money will be put to good use, particularly during Derry’s year as City of Culture when Dungiven is the gateway to the North West.”

He added: “The minister said he didn’t have to be convinced there was a case for Dungiven, but obviously now he has been able to acquire the money.”