South Down MP Chris Hazzard has said tourism chiefs north and south must work together in order to extend Ireland’s Ancient East Tourism region to the north east of the island in preparation for the impact of Brexit on tourism.

Ireland's Ancient East highlighted on the map of Ireland.
Ireland's Ancient East highlighted on the map of Ireland.

Commenting on the tourism campaign Mr Hazzard said “It is ludicrous that Failte Ireland’s 'Ancient East' tourism region stops in County Louth excluding the historically significant north-east of our island.

"The north-east was the playground for Cú Chulainn and Fionn Mac Cumhaill; its landscape is forever marked by St Patrick’s legacy; surrounded by shoreline that welcomed Vikings, Planters and the Normans. It is simply unacceptable that this rich heritage would be a victim of partitionism of the very worst kind.

“Tourism providers are very worried about the impact of Brexit on the industry; of the tariffs, the red-tape, and the needless bureaucratic hurdles - they need to be supported in the years ahead.

Mr Hazzard added “The best way to mitigate the Brexit impact on tourism in Ireland is to copper-fasten our all-island tourism product. Now is the time to extend the ‘Ancient East’ region - and also the Wild Atlantic Way coastal route - into the north to encompass all that is worth seeing on the island of Ireland.”