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  • Projects include outdoor areas to accommodate social distancing and equipment to run local events
  • Minister Heather Humphreys encourages communities to apply before August 28th

Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, has announced the expansion of the Town and Village Renewal Scheme.

As part of the changes, 41 towns with populations of over 10,000 will be eligible to apply for funding for the first time specifically for Covid-related measures.

These include towns such Sligo, Tralee, Naas, Cavan, Enniscorthy, Wicklow and Maynooth.

The move means that these towns will be assisted in funding projects for Covid-related projects, such as;

  • The creation of outdoor areas to accommodate social interactions in a safe environment to include furniture and awnings.
  • Enhancement of town centres by painting, cleaning and improving pedestrian access.
  • Provision of equipment to run local festivals or events to bring people back into towns and villages.
  • The enhancement of community buildings to accommodate remote working.

Minister Humphreys has also increased the number of applications that Local Authorities can submit for other smaller towns and villages with populations of less than 10,000 people.

The Minister is encouraging communities to submit their applications through their Local Authority by August 28th.

Minister Humphreys commented:

“We are all aware of how hard it has been to keep our towns open for business during Covid-19.

“That’s why I am delighted to be able to announce these further measures today.

“I am particularly pleased by the inclusion of 41 larger towns who are now eligible to apply. These towns can each apply for up to €40,000 to increase footfall and social activity in towns and address social distancing measures that we all now face as a result of Covid-19.

“I would encourage these large towns, as well as towns and villages with populations of below 10,000, to engage with their Local Authority to identify projects that will help to bring confidence back to communities and businesses in their locality.”

Minister Humphreys continued:

“The Government’s commitment to supporting our Towns and Villages was evident in the July Stimulus Package, which included a €10m injection into this scheme to bring the total level of funding this year to €25 million.

“Last month, I approved the first tranche of funding under this Scheme – €2.8m – to assist 106 towns and villages in adapting to the challenges posed by Covid-19.”

The closing date for this new round of funding is 28th August 2020 with the initiative for the larger towns also closing on the same date.

Details of the Town and Village Renewal Scheme are here.

Notes:

The extra funding of €10 million for towns and villages under the July Stimulus Package is in addition to €15 million already ear-marked for the Town and Village Renewal Scheme for 2020.

The Town & Village Renewal Scheme provides funding for projects that make our towns and villages more attractive and sustainable. The Scheme has previously invested in public-realm projects and the enhancement of town centre amenities, interventions to encourage town centre living and projects that support the economic development of our towns and villages. Applications under the Scheme are submitted to the Department of Rural & Community Development through the Local Authorities. This year the scheme has been adapted in response to COVID-19 as follows:

  • A focus under the standard Town and Village Renewal Scheme (funding of up to €200,000) on interventions that can respond to the new challenges associated with COVID-19 and support the economic and social recovery of our rural towns and villages. The closing date for the Standard Scheme has been extended to 30th September 2020 with each Local Authority now entitled to submit up to 10 applications (increased from 6 previously).
  • The introduction of a new strand of the Town & Village Renewal Scheme (Accelerated Measure with funding of up to €40,000) that will support accelerated interventions that can be delivered in the short-term to assist towns and villages to adapt to COVID-19. This strand is being delivered under 3 Rounds as follows:

Round 1 :The list of the first 106 towns and villages to receive funding under Round 1 of enhanced measure of the Town and Village Renewal Scheme in 2020 can be found here.

Round 2: Applications submitted by the closing date 14th August 2020 for towns and villages with population below 10,000 people.

Round 3 (new): Closing date 28th August 2020, 6 applications can be submitted by each Local Authority for towns and villages with population below 10,000 people.

Round 3 – Large Towns (new): Closing date 28th August 2020. Funding is being provided for larger towns (population above 10,000 people based on 2016 Census) as an exceptional measure under the Accelerated Measure in 2020.

The list of 41 large towns that can submit an application for funding of up to €40,000 is here.


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