North Ayrshire Council, in conjunction with the Scottish Sailing Institute, Largs Yacht Haven Ltd and a number of other funding partners have acknowledged the €336,000 (￡275,000) of EU funding towards the new championship slipway installation at Largs. Without the slipway in place the area would not of been able to host the prestigious World Laser championships in July of this year that provided a much welcome economic boon for the coastal town.
North Ayrshire Council secured the funding under the Sail West project, which is part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund through the INTERREG IVA cross border programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body.
The Sail West project is a marine tourism initiative with 20 partners from Northern Ireland, Ireland and Scotland. The project aims to encourage the development of tourism and recreation across their shared maritime region.
In acknowledgement of the EU funding received, a plaque was installed beside the slipway and was unveiled with representatives of the partner organisations present. Councillor David O’Neill, Leader of North Ayrshire Council said “Local Authority support has been vital to this project and North Ayrshire Council has been an active partner for many years in the development of sailing and associated marine infrastructure. We are confident that the participation in the Sail West Project and the recent very successful hosting of the World Laser Championships at Largs will bring significant benefits for all project partners.”
Newly appointed Sail West project manager Frank McGrogan, based in Donegal County Council welcomed the completion of the Largs project. “This is the first Sail West sub-project to have been completed and all the partners have been impressed by the drive and vision of North Ayrshire partners in successfully completing the championship slipway that will undoubtedly be used for many future events.”