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Council's Milwaukee trip is unjustifiable

Noel McAdam's article (News, August 17) reported Mid and East Antrim Borough Council's intention once again to send five of its finest to the Irish Festival in Milwaukee to promote an attraction which we already pay Tourism NI to promote professionally.

Last year, the council painted a picture of councillors' hard work, spending long hours at this musical celebration of Celtic Irish heritage, manning their little exhibition stand while listening to fiddle, uilleann pipe and bodhran.

This year, we don't need assurances that the trip is worthwhile, as the council has the statistics to hand. Around 23,000 people visited the attraction - well short of the 70,000 planned - due to closures, but it provides a large enough sample for the council to tell us how many Americans visited the attraction as a direct result of their exhibit?

If the answer is "We don't know", then a return without hard evidence of benefit is unjustifiable.


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