National Enterprise Town Awards: Cahir

We are profiling all the towns to enter this year’s National Enterprise Town Awards. Today we are looking at Cahir, Co Tipperary.

The historic market town of Cahir is located at the intersection of the N8 and the N24 roads. The town is located to the south of Clonmel on the road to Cork and Dublin and also has rail connections to the main urban centres.

The town is set in the river valley of the Suir River and the new Suir Blueway has seen an increased level of activity both on the river such as kayaking and fishing and the walking trails adjacent to the river. It is an attractive settlement, being small scale and rural in character whilst also having strong urban core. Cahir has a tourism market which is evolving and is based on the historic Cahir Castle and Cahir Swiss Cottage, both OPW managed sites.

With a population of 3,593 (Census, 2016) Cahir is one of the larger South Tipperary towns. It also has a very diverse and multicultural population with over 40 different nationalities residing in the area. According to the 2016 Census, Cahir has Ireland’s eighth highest percentage of non-Irish born residents, many working in local factories and industries but others seeking to start their own businesses which will be facilitated by the provision of additional enterprise space and high-speed broadband.

It has several indigenous businesses and is an important town on the tourist trail. Town centres need to capitalise on a projected increase in excess of 42pc in overseas tourism revenue up to 2025, to increase footfall to town centres and thus an increase in town centre retail revenues.

Towards a digital tomorrow

There is a proposal to develop a new Digital Office Hub in Cahir which is part of a series of initiatives that is being undertaken by the Council and other stakeholders to stimulate and support digital entrepreneurs, early stage companies and existing creatives looking for a location.

The Eir – New Urban Fibre to the home programme (Ireland’s Fibre Network (IFN)) is also proposed for the town of Cahir which will ensure a range of competitive broadband options for the Digital Hub.

Cahir also has the benefit of existing digital infrastructure such as a metropolitan area network (MAN) managed by Enet and the presence of this fibre-based network which runs throughout the town centre and will also assist in delivering this project.

The existing Cahir Enterprise Centre managed by Cahir Development Association is also located near the Square in a building owned by Tipperary County Council. This centre is currently fully occupied and demand for additional office space, meeting and training facilities in the town continue to grow.    

The development of the new Digital Office Hub will cater for some of this increased demand and also provide a new focal point in the town centre with the proposed upgrade of the old Council offices and library building, as the library will be relocating to another building in the town by the end of the year.  

The Local Enterprise Office (LEO), Tipperary Chamber of Commerce and other agencies have organised and held various events, seminars and training programmes in the town.

Image: Christian1965/Wikimedia Commons

Edited by John Kennedy (john.kennedy3@boi.com)

Published: 29 October, 2019