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Rural Funding

From: Department of Rural and Community Development

There are several different funds available for rural areas. Here is a brief description of each as well as links to the individual services and how to apply for them.

Rural Regeneration and Development

The Rural Regeneration and Development Fund is a commitment of €1 billion by government to be invested in rural Ireland over the period 2019 to 2027.

The Rural Regeneration and Development Fund can fund projects including (but not limited to):

  • infrastructure that may be needed to support town centre housing and/or commercial development
  • measures to address building vacancy including building refurbishment, redevelopment and/or demolition
  • the development of community or public facilities infrastructure including improvements to roads, bridges and car parking facilities
  • infrastructure that improves telecommunications connectivity
  • projects that support job creation, entrepreneurship and innovation in rural areas (for example: development of Digital Hubs, Enterprise Hubs, Creative Hubs, or training facilities)
  • enhancement of heritage and/or other community assets including the provision/enhancement of recreational or leisure facilities.


The fund will focus on all settlements and rural areas with fewer than 10,000 people which are located outside the five city metropolitan areas.

Rural towns with a population of over 10,000 people are eligible to apply for funding under the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund.

A maximum of 80% funding will be considered where community contributions form a significant element of the match-funding.

How to apply

The second call for applications under the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund is now closed.

The Information Booklet is available here.

RRDF Application Form Category 1

The application form for Category 1 projects for the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund.


Please submit your application form to: rrdf@drcd.gov.ie

For more information about the applications process, please see the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund information page.

Small-Scale Rural Projects (CLÁR)

The CLÁR-Funding for Small-Scale Rural Projects (Ceantair Laga Árd-Riachtanais) is a targeted investment programme which provides funding for small-scale infrastructural projects in rural areas that have suffered the greatest levels of population decline.

There are three measures funded under the 2019 CLÁR programme:

Measure 1: support for schools or community safety measures

Measure 2: play areas (including multi-use games areas)

Measure 3: community wellbeing supports comprising of:

  • 3(a) first response support
  • 3(b) mobility and cancer care transport
  • 3(c) sensory gardens

Groups interested in funding under measures 1, 2 and 3(c) (sensory gardens) should contact their local authorities to complete the application process.

To apply for Measures 3(a) and 3(b) (First Response Report and Mobility and Cancer Care Transport), application forms must be submitted to clar@drcd.gov.ie .

The closing date for applications under all measures is the 25th of April 2019.

Measure 3(a)

CLÁR M3a Scheme-Outline

CLÁR 2019 will allocate funding for the First Response Support Measure. This measure will be operated directly by the Department of Rural and Community Development and is open to established organisations/groups that operate entirely on a voluntary basis and are involved in emergency rescue/first response efforts.


CLÁR M3a-App-Form

CLÁR Funding 2019 Application Form for Measure 3(a) First Response Support.


Measure 3(b)

CLÁR M3b-Scheme-Outline

CLÁR 2019 includes an allocation of funding for Mobility and Cancer Care Transport support. This measure will be operated directly by the Department of Rural and Community Development and is open to established organisations/groups that operate entirely on a voluntary basis


CLÁR M3b-App-Form 2019

CLÁR Funding 2019 Application form for Measure 3(b) Mobility and Cancer Care Support.


Town and Village Renewal

The central aim of the Town and Village Renewal Scheme is to support the revitalisation of towns and villages, to improve the living and working environment of their communities, and increase their potential to support increased economic activity into the future.

Projects which receive funding will:

  • increase the attractiveness of the town or village as a local commercial and social centre, and as a result increase its sustainability as a place in which to live and work
  • enhance the town or village's environment and amenities in the interests of residents, businesses, and visitors
  • promote the town or village’s potential for tourism and as a centre for culture and local heritage, thus enhancing the sense of identity

The type of projects to be funded under this scheme is primarily a matter for the local authorities to identify in partnership with local business and communities.

Should you have any queries in relation to the scheme please submit them by email to: townandvillage@drcd.gov.ie

LEADER programme for Rural Development

The LEADER programme accepts applications based on projects which improve:

  • rural tourism
  • enterprise development
  • broadband
  • basic services targeted at hard-to-reach communities
  • rural youth
  • protection and sustainable use of water resources
  • local biodiversity
  • renewable energy

The LEADER programme is administered at a local level by 29 local action groups, which contain local representatives from the community, public and private sector. Each group is responsible for selecting and awarding LEADER funding to projects within their geographical area.

A project must be aligned with the priorities of the local development strategy. The total funding available under the LEADER 2014-2020 Programme is €250 million.

To apply for funding for your LEADER project, please contact your nearest local action group.

For more information on LEADER, go to the following page: LEADER Rural Development

Local Road Improvement

The Local Road Improvements Scheme (LIS) provides funding to help local authorities carry out improve ment works on private and non-publicly maintained roads.

These roads can often lead to

  • multiple homes
  • farmland
  • amenities such as lakes, rivers or beaches

If you have or know a road in need of repair that's not maintained, then contact your local authority to see if LIS funding would be available.

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