Constructive talks on future of Muckross facilities

Charles, Prince of Wales and his wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, visiting the traditional farms at Muckross House during their visit to Killarney in 2018.
Picture: Valerie O’Sullivan

THE future of all operations at Killarney’s Muckross House and Gardens – including the traditional farms – looks secure following a top-level meeting between park management and senior department officials.

Concern had been expressed for the future of the traditional farms attraction which has been a big favourite with visiting families.

On June 18 last the Board of Trustees of Muckross House said that due to the global pandemic, social distancing measures and the safety of staff and visitors, the farms would reopen in July and August with limited public access.

Chairman of the Board of Trustees Micheál Ó Coileain

It sparked fears that the major tourist attraction would shut down indefinitely in September and meetings were scheduled to inform the 12 full-time staff and 25 part-time time employees at the folk park and farm complex that some redundancies were expected.

The board said cost saving options were required in order to ensure the survival of the organisation and that a number of employees were at risk of redundancy.

Chairman of the board of Trustees, Micheal O’Coileain, remarked at the time: “This was not an easy discussion. The board deliberated on this for a long time and regretfully we feel we have to explore this option, as are other organisations across the country”.

In a statement issued to this Tuesday, however, the Trustees said they met with senior department officials yesterday and they described it as “a very constructive engagement”.

“There is commitment from both parties to ensure and affirm the future of all operations at Muckross and those employed there, which includes the traditional farms,” the statement added.

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