Geographical Changes -Ireland’s Ancient East and Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands

As you know, Fáilte Ireland’s experience brands, Ireland’s Ancient East and Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, were developed to increase the economic contribution of tourism by encouraging visitors to stay longer and experience more of what each region has to offer.

Each brand provides the region with a unique competitive advantage and a clear consumer lead proposition which ensures that a consistent approach is taken to the identification and development of memorable tourism experiences.

As the brands evolved over time, Fáilte Ireland conducted an extensive and timely review of both the Ireland’s Ancient East and the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands tourism brands and has concluded that changes should be made to the boundaries of both brands to improve their effectiveness and ensure their continued success.

Specifically, the review found that the Ireland’s Ancient East brand would benefit from drawing in tighter to the east of the country, while the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands brand would benefit from expanding to include a greater proportion of the midlands.

As a result, the following changes were agreed with the Local Authorities and key stakeholders and industry members involved in the consultation and were announced at Fáilte Ireland’s ‘From Survival to Recovery’ industry event on 8th February.

  • Counties Cavan, Westmeath and Offaly will sit wholly within the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands brand and will no longer be part of the Ireland’s Ancient East brand. 
  • In addition, a slightly greater portion of Co. Tipperary will also be encompassed within the Hidden Heartlands brand, namely all the Nenagh Municipal District and part of the Thurles Municipal District. 

A map illustrating the changes follows below.

We are confident that these changes will allow us to further raise awareness of both regions domestically and internationally while serving to complement the distinctiveness of each brand offering.

However, we also realise that there will be a transition period for those of you joining the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands brand from Ireland’s Ancient East. In order to assist you with transition please be assured of the following:

  • This will be a gradual process throughout the first quarter of 2022 with guidance and information available at all times through the Fáilte Ireland regional teams.
  • Supports and training will be provided at business level to assist the businesses transitioning over to the Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands brand.
  • The level and quality of service and supports to all businesses in these areas will be sustained by Fáilte Ireland as before.