Two of the most important tourist attractions in the Mid-West, Bunratty Castle & Folk Park and King John’s Castle, Limerick, will reopen their doors to the public from June 29th instead of July 20th. SIPTU has welcomed the decision, which is in line with changes to the road map for recovery announced by the Government on 4th June. SIPTU Organiser Rachel Keane said, “This follows a successful union campaign to revive economic activity in the region. However, this is just the first step. Our campaign to ensure that all of the Shannon Heritage sites reopen, and remain open, will continue. The support from all of the political parties for our campaign to promote tourism and protect our members’ jobs, and livelihoods, has been overwhelming. “In particular, our members were heartened by the Clare County Council’s passing of the following motion, ‘That this Council write to the Shannon Group, requesting an urgent meeting with the Council, to discuss the crisis that is unfolding and to take a wider view of the tourism sector across the Mid-West, and sit down with Limerick City and County Councils and unions to see how jobs can be retained.’ We understand that Limerick County Council will discuss a similar motion next week.” Shannon Heritage normally employs 159 staff on a fulltime basis and a further 200 on a seasonal basis. In addition, the company stimulates spin-off benefits for a range of service sector businesses across the region. SIPTU Activist Liam Monagher added that, “Our immediate focus is to work collaboratively with Shannon Heritage management to ensure that our members return to a safe working environment.  Their health and safety, and that of visitors, is of paramount importance, and we will work with management to ensure that all measures contained in the Return to Work Safely Protocol are implemented. Our members are eager to get back to work to ensure these cultural and heritage sites are maintained all year round to ensure the viability of regional tourism.”  Contact Rachel Keane, SIPTU   087 3678097