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New Vandeleur Café and Restaurant to Create 10 New Jobs

24 October 2023

10 new permanent jobs will be created over the next 12 months at Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre in Kilrush as part of an ongoing multi-million-euro redevelopment of the popular West Clare visitor attraction.

The announcement was made on Monday 23rd October by Clare County Council at the signing of a contract with Martins Construction Ltd for the development of a 140-seater indoor and outdoor café and restaurant.

Following a competitive tender process for the restaurant, award-winning Brambles Café chain were awarded the tender for operating the new facility, which will allow for Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre to cater for corporate and festive events. It is anticipated that the new facility will open in June 2024.

Works have been ongoing since 2021 to extensively restore and renovate the site as part of an overall Visitor Development Strategy that also includes the improved use of the 420 acres of surrounding native woodland.

Earlier this year, a new interpretive centre was opened together with the newly renovated stable block, a new gardener’s maintenance building and public toilet facilities. The Department of Rural and Community Development also has approved funding totalling €245,000, with 25% match funding from Clare County Council, for the recently completed resurfacing of the public carpark and other ancillary service works.

According to Cllr Joe Cooney, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, “Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre is a key contributor to the West Clare economy. This development will add greatly to the overall visitor experience and will facilitate increased length of stay and visitor spend in the local area.”

Cllr Ian Lynch, Cathaoirleach of West Clare Municipal District (MD) and Board Director of Kilrush Amenity Trust, commented: “As a long-time supporter of the development of Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre, I am very proud of what has been achieved at this visitor attraction for the benefit of the town of Kilrush and West Clare. Kilrush Amenity Trust CLG and Clare County Council, along with the staff and management of the site, have produced an award-winning visitor attraction that has remained true to the origins and history of this location.”

Pat Dowling, Chief Executive of Clare County Council, said: “With support from government, Clare County Council is committed to investing in the future development of the attraction, which has been the subject of an investment totalling more than €2.6 million to date and an additional recent welcome injection of €245,000 for the completion of accessibility and ancillary improvements within and surrounding the centre. Our goal is to not only help recover tourism and assist rural regeneration in Kilrush and surrounding areas, but also to create opportunities for economic growth and employment in the wider region.”

Noel Kilkenny, Chairperson of Kilrush Amenity Trust CLG, commented: “I want to acknowledge the significant funding support of the Department of Rural & Community Development and Clare County Council, as well as ongoing support from Coillte and the staff and management of the Centre for steering the ongoing development of this historically important site. Our ambition always has been to establish a focal point for visitors to commence their journey through West Clare. This additional on-site development will assist us in further enhancing Vandeleur’s growing reputation as a signature attraction in County Clare.”

Leonard Cleary, Director of Tourism Development and West Clare MD with Clare County Council, describing Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre stated that it is “an ideal match” for Brambles’ existing business. 

“This family-run business produces a world-class dining experience as evidenced by its service offering at the Cliffs of Moher Experience since 2019,” he explained. “We particularly welcome Brambles’ ethos of ‘farm to fork’ through its use of local and Irish products whenever possible. The proposed new facility is good news for local suppliers and customers as their Team at Vandeleur seeks to develop a menu incorporating a strong Clare influence.”

Brambles’ menus currently feature a host of Clare produce having established links with CS Fish, CMK Foods, Kellys Meats, Pynes Potatoes, Burren Smokehouse, Clare Jams, Celtic Leaves, Cleanwell, Cratloe Hills Cheese, Clare Foods and Hurst Botanicals.

The new café and restaurant development consists of restoration work and alterations within the existing stable block courtyard to support tourism development, including a café and restaurant, indoor and outdoor dining area, kitchen, office and welfare facilities.

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(1): (Back: L-R): Pictured at the contract signing for the development of a new café and restaurant at Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre were: Gerard O’Malley, Tom McNamara and Partners; Louise Loughnane and Martin Loughnane, Martins Construction; Aldo Andreucetti, Clare County Council; Noel Kilkenny, Chair, Kilrush Amenity Trust; Donnacha Lynch, Clare Tourism Development DAC; Ciarán Reid, Brambles; (Front: L-R): Richie Robinson, Lead Architect, Jackson Coleman & Associates; Leonard Cleary, Clare County Council; Colette Costelloe, Clare County Council; Councillor Ian Lynch, Chair, West Clare MD, and Board Member, Kilrush Amenity Trust; Maeve Reid, Brambles; Councillor Joe Cooney, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council; Councillor Gabriel Keating, Board Member, Kilrush Amenity Trust; Deirdre O’Shea, Clare County Council. Photo: Brian Arthur.

(2): Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre in Kilrush, County Clare. Photo source:

Page last reviewed: 24/10/23

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