Visitor and income levels ‘stagnant’ at Carnfunnock

editorial image

Income levels at Carnfunnock Country Park could remain “stagnant” until the local economy recovers from the effects of recession.

That was the message from Larne Borough Council recently, as it set its pricing policy for the park in the year ahead.

With the borough bathed in glorious sunshine for much of last summer, the local authority had expected visitor and income levels at Carnfunnock to be equally bright.

However, at the latest meeting of the leisure committee, elected members were told that the income generated was not as high as had been anticipated.

Part of the reason for this was put down to the summer heatwave allowing day trippers to take advantage of free alternatives, such as the borough’s beaches.

Members were told that the recession remained a factor in financial decision making for families, and heard that visitors appeared to be spending less.

Minutes of the meeting state: “Given the current financial climate and the ongoing pressure on disposable incomes, it is likely that visitor and income levels will remain stagnant for the foreseeable future.”

With this in mind, council officers felt it would be “counter-productive” to raise charges across the range of services at the park.

It was recommended (and resolved by councillors) that he only service at Carnfunnock which will see an price increase in 2014/15 will be the caravan park , which will undergo a 10 per cent rise in a bid to offset utility charges such as gas, waste and Wi-Fi provision.