The Minister for Rural and Community Development Heather Humphreys TD has announced that under the Town and Village Accelerated Measure in Response to Covid-19, four applications made by Cork County Council have been successful in securing funding to the value of €104,000. This measure is a new strand of the scheme announced in 2020, focused on the delivery of immediate interventions to assist towns and villages in responding to Covid-19.

The initiative will see locations across the County benefit from this funding, with additional resources being provided by Cork County Council to maximise the impact of this investment. In East Cork, an accessible community garden is to be developed in Youghal incorporating a protected structure. In West Cork, the Municipal District area will benefit from the purchase of two marquees for the holding of ‘all-weather’ community events. Rathcormac will see the enhancement of a public amenity area by providing seating in a community space, and improving pedestrian access, and in Macroom, funding will be used for revamp of the town to include refreshment painting, deep clean, and provision of street furniture.

Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Mary Linehan Foley, welcomed the announcement, and noted the benefits this will have for communities struggling to recover from the social and economic effects of Covid-19:

“The past number of months have shown how we need to adapt to help our towns and villages respond to the effects of Covid-19, including the need for more pedestrian space, outdoor amenity and refurbishment of our towns to make them attractive places to live, work and visit. I welcome this funding stream that recognises the unique responses that are needed, and look forward to seeing the difference these initiatives will make to our rural communities”.

Cork County Council Deputy Chief Executive James Fogarty added:

“The approved projects complement the work of Cork County Council’s Project ACT (Activating County Towns), which has already seen significant investment in adapting towns across the County to the requirements of physical distancing and aiding in economic recovery. This announcement further supports Cork County Council’s aim of supporting economic and social recovery of our towns and villages in the weeks and months ahead”.

The Town and Village Renewal Scheme is a key initiative under the Government’s Action Plan for Rural Development and is part of the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 Rural Regeneration Programme.

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