Mr Michael Ring TD, the Minister for Rural and Community Development, today announced the launch of the 2019 Town and Village Renewal Scheme. The scheme supports the rejuvenation of rural towns and villages with populations of less than 10,000 people through projects that will have a viable, long-term benefit.
For 2019, the Town and Village Renewal Scheme will support projects which enhance the town or village centre environment. Building on the pilot scheme launched by Minister Ring in October 2018, it will also place a focus on initiatives which encourage increased residential occupancy in town centres.
The Town and Village Renewal Scheme is a key initiative under the Missing link item! and is part of a range of measures to support the revitalisation of rural Ireland under the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 Rural Regeneration Programme.
Launching the 2019 scheme, Minister Ring said:
The Minister continued:
As in previous years, the scheme will be administered through the Local Authorities, who will be required to work closely with local communities and local businesses to develop and implement proposals that can make a lasting impact in revitalising rural towns and villages across the country.
Full details of the scheme will be issued to the Local Authorities in the coming days.
In announcing the launch of the 2019 scheme, Minister Ring said:
The Town and Village Renewal Scheme is an initiative under the Action Plan for Rural Development, and is part of a package of national and local support measures to rejuvenate rural towns and villages throughout Ireland through the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 Rural Regeneration Programme. The Scheme is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development and administered by the Local Authorities.
Local Authorities will be required to advertise for expressions of interest from towns/villages in their area and can select up to 12 proposals for development into detailed applications to be submitted to the Department by the end of June. Selection of projects will be by means of a competitive process, with the final project selection being made by the Department of Rural and Community Development.
The Department will write to the Local Authorities in the coming days with full details of the Scheme.
Two categories of Town/Villages are eligible for support under the scheme:
Category 1: Towns/villages with a population of less than 5,000 people.
Category 2: Towns with a population of 5,000-10,000 people.
At least of 60% of the funding available will be awarded to Category 1 towns and villages.
Successful proposals will demonstrate close collaboration between communities and business interests in the design and delivery of proposed projects, and must have the support of the Local Authority.
Projects which have clear positive impacts on a town or village in terms of place-making and town centre regeneration, or which stimulate economic activity between a town/village and its neighbouring townlands will be particularly welcome, as will proposals seeking to develop initiatives to encourage town centre living.
Projects which demonstrate leveraging of, or linkages with, other schemes operated by Government Departments or agencies (e.g. in the areas of heritage, arts, culture, tourism, re-use of vacant premises, vacant sites, energy efficiency schemes, etc.) will also be encouraged.
Up to 80% of the total cost of a project under the Town and Village Renewal Scheme will be provided for any individual project. The minimum grant which is available is €20,000 and the maximum is €100,000. A higher maximum of €200,000 will be considered for a limited number of projects where a strong case can be made demonstrating exceptionally strong benefit to a town and/or its outlying areas.
The Rural Regeneration and Development Fund supports larger scale projects, with a minimum grant allocation of €500,000. Minister Ring launched the second call for proposals under the Government’s Rural Regeneration and Development Fund on 12th April. This call for proposals will focus on capital regeneration projects which are ready to commence.
Full details of the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, along with the Application Form, are available here.