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£6.1m funding award set to reinvigorate and boost the fun in Carnfunnock!

Updated: Jan 23

Major upgrade works are on the way at Carnfunnock Country Park, outside Larne, after the UK Government awarded £6.1m following a successful finding bid by Mid & East Antrim Borough Council.

The exciting news was announced this week as part of the government's UK Levelling Up initiative and will see the popular facilily receive much-needed investment to improve access, facilities and create new attractions.

Idyllicly set in 191 acres of parkland and overlooking the beautiful East Antrim coast, Carnfunnock Country Park will be reinvigorated and the plans will help the local council authority to capitalise on the tourism market as well as provide a modern fit-for-purpose facility for the borough's residents.

The proposed plans for Carnfunnock will enhance the natural heritage asset which will in turn will help revitalise Larne town centre through creating a space that people want to visit, live and work in.

A pump track recently opened in Killinchy, County Down. (Image: John Clarke Photography)

One of the most exciting elements for older children is a 1,000m2 pump track - a circuit of rollers, banked turns and features designed to be ridden completely by riders "pumping" – generating momentum by up and down body movements, instead of pedaling or pushing!

As well as this new leisure attraction, the existing adventure play areas will be upgraded, and enhancements will be made throughout the park to include a new maze viewing platform and additional accessible play equipment.

Key components of the project will include construction of a new visitor centre which will house a retail shop, café, meeting rooms and bathroom facilities, overlooking the coastline.

It will also see an upgrade to existing amenity block to include a restaurant, café, shops, toilets, office, staff welfare, storage and circulation.

There will be an upgrade of the existing visitor amenities and new additional toilet facilities.

Finally, there will be an introduction of new public realm sculpture trails, viewing points, pathways, signage; and an introduction of two electric points for camp pitches.

Speaking about the announcement, Mayor Alderman Noel Williams, said:

“We are delighted to have received the full amount of £6.1m for our Carnfunnock Country Park bid.

"We are grateful to the many residents who helped us develop our plan through our engagement events and we are delighted that the Council's plan and investment has been supported in this way.

"We know how proud our residents are of Carnfunnock and we are sure everyone will share our excitement with this news.”

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