Mayo: Business and tourism links with Manchester
Mayo Manchester Business and Tourism group was formed in 2011 to promote links between Mayo and the north England city.
It was also set up to help promote Mayo Tourism and Business in the media both in the UK and in Ireland. In its first three years of existence the group generated just over €1million worth of publicity and just over 100,000 visitors to North Mayo.
In Ireland the group worked closely with an Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD, Michael Ring TD, the Minister for Tourism and Sport, and Tourism Ireland to help them launch and promote the hugely successful 2013 Gathering.
The group was responsible for organising the biggest Gathering in Ireland by any UK group and was awarded the Mayo Diaspora award for its work in promoting links to the West of Ireland.
Under CEO Tony Hennigan, the group has forged strong links with dozens of organisations, businesses and public representatives in Mayo.
The Business part of the group organises an annual Mayo Manchester Business and Tourism event each summer which takes place at the Bonniconlon show on the August bank holiday. It has also helped launch the Nephin Irish Whiskey Distillery, fashion company Erin Bijoux and helped promote the new Mayo-based health drinks company Mariko Green Tea.
The Tourism part of the group worked with Mayo.ie from its conception, and assisted several festivals, shows and events in the county. It also organised its own Mayo Manchester Gathering and Mayo Manchester Diaspora weekends in Mayo, Dublin and Manchester.
Activities in the UK
In the UK the group has formed partnerships with several businesses as well as community and sporting bodies. Manchester MP, John Leech, spokesperson for Tourism and Sport in the coalition government has been a great supporter of the group and has helped launch the Mayo Gathering at the House of Commons.
The group is heavily involved with promoting the worldwide inaugural 2015 Mayo Day with a major concert in Levenshulme, South Manchester on Saturday 2 May.
The group hopes to organise a Mayo Manchester Festival weekend in North Mayo from Thursday 30 July to Monday 3 August 2015 involving sport, music, song, dance, business and cultural activities.