Expansion of the Wicklow Mountains National Park
The Minister of State for Regional Economic Development, Mr. Michael Ring T.D., today announced that the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs has reached an agreement to purchase 4,900 acres (or 1,983 hectares) of the Dublin Uplands, in the area known popularly as the Featherbeds. This land will be added to the Wicklow Mountains National Park, expanding the total size of the National Park to 22,000 hectares.
Announcing the acquisition, the Minister of State said, ‘I am very pleased to announce the expansion of the Wicklow Mountains National Park. The Featherbeds are an important area for nature conservation and for public amenity. Their acquisition by the State is a sign of our enduring commitment to preserve our natural heritage for future generations of citizens and visitors alike to enjoy. This outcome is the culmination of a constructive engagement between the Department and NAMA and addresses a long-standing strategy to align key environmental assets. I believe an exceptional opportunity has been realised for the State in terms of the environmental gain and the amenity potential. The National Parks and Wildlife Service of the Department will work with Dublin Mountains Partnership to manage this new acquisition, reflecting the on-going commitment of all stakeholders to improve the recreational potential of this area whilst ensuring the highest standards of nature conservation.’