Moves are being made to bring the Lifford-Stranorlar Municipal District and Valladolid in Spain closer together and promote a major tourism strategy.
The project is the brainchild of the Red Hugh Ó Donnell, Lifford Committee.
Last Monday, committee member Mr Crawford, and Carlos Burgos, President of Hispano-Irish Association, addressed the Lifford-Stranorlar MD meeting.
“These (east Donegal and Valladolid) are the areas that our great Donegal Chieftain, Red Hugh Ó Donnell, took his first breath and sadly his last,” Mr Crawford told Donegal Daily.
Some of the main objectives of the Red Hugh Ó Donnell, Lifford Committee, are the preservation of Mongavlin Castle, St Johnston (main pic), the birthplace of the famous chieftain and the twinning of the areas around Lifford with Valladolid.
The committee also propose to erect a statue of Red Hugh in the Diamond, Lifford.
“We initially had a 15 minute slot at the meeting, but so much interest was shown by the county councillors that it was extended to almost 50 minutes,” Mr Crawford added.
“In my opening address, I mentioned the current search for the remains of our great east Donegal chieftain, Red Hugh O’Donnell, in the ancient capital of Spain and how the initial seed was set for it back in 2019 by our good friend, and committee member, retired Irish Defence Forces Commandant Brendan Rohan.”
Mr Crawford said there is huge potential to promote our two areas and generate much needed tourism and financial benefits.
“Carlos then spoke about his recent trip to Ireland and the beauty of our country with all its colours of green,” he explained.
“How special it was for him to visit Mongavlin Castle and how sad it was to see such a beautiful building let go to ruin.”
Carlos also talked about his visit to Lifford and the beautiful buildings around the Diamond which has been the seat of power in Donegal for centuries.
Carlos then went on to talk about the search for Red Hugh in Spain and how it was and still is making headline news around the world.
“He then spoke about how the City Council of Valladolid will be unveiling a plaque at Red Hugh’s burial site in the next couple of months and invited a delegation from the council to attend and further explore how our two areas can work together.”
In summing up, Mr Crawford highlighted how the City Council of Valladolid took onboard the seed that Brendan Rohan set, nurtured it and brought it to the worldstage.
“And we now have set a similar seed for our area in east Donegal and hope the Council will take the same approach as their counterparts in Valladolid,” he concluded.
Main pic of Mongavlin Castle, courtesy of www.monreaghulsterscotscentre.com