The new Dundalk BIDS manager Edel O’Mahony is confident that BIDS 2, the second programme that sets out to improve the business life of Dundalk, will be a major success.
Edel is from the town and believes in the town. She has played a major role in the implementation of the Louth Economic Forum programmes on industry, agriculture, education etc, so she brings to the job a considerable business experience and influence.
Dundalk BIDS new slogan is Better Business Brighter Future.
“The retail business is the largest employment sector in Dundalk,” said Edel. “Many business are struggling to remain opening and there is a feeling of abandonment and despair among some traders. The ongoing concern about the decline of the town centre and the the number of vacant premises and the growing air of dereliction, these are the problems and the challenges we face. And I’m confident we can tackle them.”
The five key pillars that BIDS will built its new programme on are:
Marketing and promotion.
Investment and infrastructure.
Town Watch – community.
Events and festivals.
The BIDS board and staff will be building relationships with retailers, consumers and visitors as well as Dundalk chamber of commerce, and different agencies, bodies, councils and elected members.
“We want to listen and learn,” said Edel. “We need to look at the current retail and town centre mix and see what is needed for the future. For instance, town centre living, town centre leisure, café culture, and creating a town centre experience and culture.”
BIDS will be developing close links with the Local Enterprise Office, Louth Economic forum, Enterprise Ireland, DkIT, Failte Ireland, and all business ambassadors for the town.
It will be working with the tourism office, led by Sinead Roche and various tourism committees not just in Louth, but also Meath, Monaghan, Newry and Mourne.
It will market Dundalk with the Cooley peninsula by improving the packaging.
It will work closely with Failte Ireland and all local, national and EU media.
BIDS already has a fully updated website, as well as Facebook and Twitter outlets.
The new BIDS programme will set out to reinstate the sense of community in the town, pride in the town and a love of the town, the sense of family values of long ago, and the local history and culture.