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Hopes are high that plans will progress for Duckett’s Grove which has been deemed the ‘jewel in the crown’ of Carlow

Plans were outlined to Carlow Town councillors at their most recent meeting

Plans to progress the offering at a popular local amenity and tourist attraction could be completed in time for the 2023 tourist season.

Carlow Town councillors got the update on plans for Duckett’s Grove where an audio-visual room is set to be operational next week.

While it’s proposed to move the tearooms to a larger space within the complex which spans two floors and would potentially cater for 54 people with a reception area.

Cllr Fergal Browne had hoped the cafe would have been in place sooner but says he’s now pushing for the specific date of 17th of March; “I contend that St Patrick’s Day is the beginning of the tourist season in my view, that’s why it’s important to have it situ and the tearoom will serve as purpose, as a focal point for people coming to Ducket’s Grove to be given information whether it’s the audio-visual headsets or information about the castle or the ruins of the mansion on the grounds so it’d be very important that people when they go to visit a place ultimately want some refreshments as well as seeing the amenities there, whether it’s the playground at Ducket’s Grove or the fantastic walled gardens or the general area around the ruins of the mansion”.

He says improving and adding to the facilities will help draw more people to the attraction; “I think it will and I think we already have great numbers coming to Duckett’s Grove and this is all about enhancing the experience more and obviously great credit was given to Michael Buckley who’s in charge of the gardens in Ducket’s Grove and great credit is deserved there for the fantastic job he’s done in recent years so look it’s a very great place to visit and certainly we need to keep enhancing it and making the experience for the visitor all the better”.

And Councillor Browne outlines the procedure; “The conservation report has been received by the council now in terms of doing up the tearooms that obviously will now fast-track it in terms of the project going to tender and hopefully then after that somebody will be appointed to run the tearooms so look there will be a lot of work in the next few months in terms of getting that organised but the critical thing is for it to happen and to happen as soon as possible”.