Sligo’s got a Square! The €4Million Queen Maeve Square Reveal

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Queen Maeve Square in Co. Sligo has been officially opened on Friday the 3rd of May 2024, by Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media Catherine Martin TD, accompanied by Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council, Councillor Gerard Mullaney. This follows an investment of over €4million by Fáilte Ireland, the Department of Housing, Local Government & Heritage and Sligo County Council.

Queen Maeve Square has completely transformed the centre of Sligo into an attractive public space and orientation hub, aiming to encourage visitors to come to Sligo for events and festivals! The square will also serve as an outdoor venue for concerts and other events, such as farmers markets, with a standing capacity of approximately 4,500. 

Outdoor dining facilities for local businesses and the attractive seating options available are there to ensure that the Square attracts visitors and encourages them to stay longer, creating a vibrant atmosphere in the centre of Sligo.

Additionally, an iconic Sligo sign has been unveiled, and is expected to become a focal point of Queen Maeve Square, encouraging visitors to stop for photo opportunities and spend more time in the area while helping promote and raise the profile of the Square and Sligo.

Speaking at the official opening of Queen Maeve Square today, Councillor Gerard Mullaney, Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council said: 

“Queen Maeve Square will play a key role in promoting Sligo’s attractions, supporting local businesses, and enhancing the visitor experience. Located in the heart of Sligo, Queen Maeve Square is designed to be a versatile and functional space that caters to the diverse needs of the community. Queen Maeve Square stands as a beacon of hope and opportunity, inviting everyone to experience the magic of this remarkable town.” 

Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media Catherine Martin TD, said:

“I am pleased to officially open Queen Maeve Square today in Sligo. The investment of over €4million in Queen Maeve Square helps transform the heart of the town and gives a central focus to many of Sligo’s attractions. Sligo has so much to offer visitors, and Queen Maeve Square creates a fantastic focal point for the town, and is an exciting new addition to support Sligo hosting festivals and events, like the one being held here this weekend. Queen Maeve Square is a wonderful amenity for visitors to enjoy and spend longer in the region and I look forward to seeing the tourism offering in Sligo continue to develop around this focal point and under the guidance of Fáilte Ireland’s recently launched 5-year Destination and Experience Development Plan for Sligo.”  

Minister for Housing, Local Government and Housing, Darragh O’Brien TD, said:

“Queen Maeve Square is one of a number of projects my Department, through the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund, is supporting across County Sligo. Along with other URDF supported projects, such as the O’Connell Street Enhancement works, this project will help drive regeneration and rejuvenation of the town centre and help make Sligo an even more attractive and vibrant place for people to live, work and invest in. Sligo County Council has been allocated over €57 million in total under the URDF and  I look forward to continuing to work with them on the progression and completion of their remaining URDF projects” 

Orla Carroll, Director of Product Development at Fáilte Ireland added:  

“Fáilte Ireland is committed to and focused on the sustainable development of tourism across Ireland which is an important economic driver and source of employment. We look for every opportunity to develop destinations and invest in compelling visitor experiences with the potential to drive visitors across the regions. Queen Maeve Square, which has been developed by Fáilte Ireland in partnership with Sligo County Council and the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, is a fantastic new amenity that will support the continued development of Sligo’s tourism offering. The vision of this project is to create an attractive public space and central hub for Sligo which will serve as an outdoor venue for concerts and events and facilitate visitor orientation and information points to encourage visitors to learn more, stay longer and explore the wider region.” 

Chief Executive of Sligo County Council, Martin Lydon said:

“The opening of Queen Maeve Square marks a transformative moment for Sligo as we continue to position ourselves as a premier destination along the Wild Atlantic Way.  This new civic space is not just a beautiful public amenity – it is a testament to our community’s pride and ambition.  Queen Maeve Square will serve as a vibrant hub for residents and visitors alike, encouraging exploration of our rich history and natural assets.  I am confident this project will be a catalyst for the sustainable renewal of our historic town centre, further enhancing Sligo’s reputation as a welcoming, culturally vibrant gateway to the northwest.  This is an exciting day for Sligo, and we look forward to the many events, activities and fond memories that will take place in this wonderful new public square.” 

The project is enhanced with four information points which detail Sligo’s rich history and inspires visitors to further explore the destination. These information points focus on different themes relevant to Sligo and the cut-out artwork for the metal signs was designed by students from ATU Sligo. 

The Square will feature a map of Sligo’s Coastline etched in the pavement with ground lighting to mark the 7 nearby Discovery Points along the Wild Atlantic Way. An orientation sign designed by Sligo illustrator, Annie West provides further information to visitors, and at night, the Square will be illuminated by light projections offering an exciting, animated space. 

The Queen Maeve Festival was the first event to take place in the newly launched Square and ran from Friday 3rd to Sunday 5th May, featuring musical acts Gavin James, Moncrieff, and Teada and Niamh Farrell. The event was a great success, with a great ambience and of course, a fantastic new location.

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Julia Labedz
Julia Labedz
Julia has several years of experience as a writer and editor, working with independent clients as well as larger organizations. Prior to working for ITTN she was a marketing executive. She has both a BA and MFA in English with Creative Writing, with an extensive professional and creative portfolio. In her free time, Julia works on her novel.

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