David McGowan, businessman and entrepreneur from Enniscrone in Co. Sligo has started work on his Quirky Nights Glamping Village after two and a half years waiting for planning permission.
David McGowan started his own funeral business in 1989 when he opened McGowan’s Funeral Home in Ballina. Since then David has expanded his business from Ballina and now owns a second funeral home - Foley & McGowan’s in Sligo Town, a Funeral Supplies business D.J.MacNeice & Co. and a centre of excellence for embalming and funeral directing including an education centre and museum, all at his facility in Collooney, Co. Sligo.
In 2016 David hit the headlines in when he revealed that he had purchased a decommissioned Russian Boeing 767 from Shannon Airport to form the centerpiece of his new venture. That venture being Quirky Nights Glamping Village – a unique Glamping site consisting of various ‘transportation’ style accommodation.
The story of the Boeing 767 attracted worldwide attention when it travelled from Shannon Airport by sea on a specially constructed barge, arriving at its new home in Enniscrone in May 2016. The world watched, and people travelled from all over Ireland and UK to the small village in the Northwest of Ireland to await the arrival of the Russian Aircraft.
David became a regular guest on the Anton Savage show on the National radio station Today FM where he updated the country on his plans for his new project. He became a household name in Ireland and was a guest on many of the National TV and Radios shows including The Late Late Show, and The Afternoon Show, RTE and TV3 News to name but a few. David gained tens of thousands of supporters literally overnight on his social media pages, with the journey of the Boeing being featured on all major news stations across Ireland the UK and Europe.
Despite numerous setbacks, David has met and overcome each and every obstacle so far and is determined to see his vision realised and for tourism in the West of Ireland and the small towns along the beautiful Wild Atlantic Way to reach its full potential. David’s Glamping Village sits beside the world famous Enniscrone Beach popular with surfers worldwide, and Enniscrone golfcourse.
David has been acknowledged by many organisations, both here and abroad. David’s businesses have funded the project to the tune of 1.6 million Euro to date.
In November 2017, after two and a half years, David finally received full planning permission for his Quirky Nights Glamping Village. While waiting for his planning to come through David secured a Slam Door Train, London Taxi’s, Double Decker Buses and Yachts, all to be transformed into quirky accommodation. Work will soon begin on building the ‘Terminal Building’ which will house two bars, café’s, a restaurant, conference centre and a food hall. David has been inundated with requests to use the Quirky Glamping Site as a wedding venue and there will be a dedicated area for this. David is particularly adamant in ensuring that the Quirky Glamping site will be wheelchair friendly and will also include a sensory area for people with autism.
“I’m delighted that planning permission has come through. The site was useless without planning. It’s full steam ahead now. Every aspect has been a challenge – the buying, the moving of the various vehicles, the planning of it. Now we’re into the funding of it and this will be a challenge also, but I’ll get there – didn’t I land the plane when everyone said I wouldn’t.
Such is the interest in David’s experience, he is constantly requested to speak at many colleges and organisations around Ireland and the UK as a motivational speaker where he informs his audiences about the hurdles he faced in trying to fulfil his dream and how he overcame these hurdles.
And Now David is on another mission:
On May 1, 1998 the movie ‘Black Dog’ An American action Thriller film, which has gone on to receive cult status, was released by Universal Studios and starred Patrick Swayze, Randy Travis and Meatloaf and featured the song ‘Nowhere Road’ by Steve Earle (Galway Girl). However, the main star of the film was the Truck (Black Dog) and the film soon became known as ‘The Truckers Movie’.
On the 20th Anniversary of the release of ‘Black Dog’ on 1st May this year, David has announced that he is currently in negotiations with the owners to transport Black Dog from its destination in Australia to Enniscrone, Co.Sligo, to set up home alongside the Russian Boeing 767 as one of the main features in the Quirky Nights Glamping Village which will be open in Spring / Summer 2019. The journey will be documented in similar fashion to the Boeing in 2016.
You can contact Quirky Nights Glamping Village or get in touch with David McGowan at www.quirkyglamping.ie
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