Wicklow County Council is seeking Expressions of Interest from interested towns and villages with populations of less than 10,000 who may meet the criteria for inclusion in the Town and Village Renewal Scheme 2017.
The Town and Village Renewal Scheme 2017 – recently been announced by the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs – is an initiative under the Government’s Action Plan for Rural Development and is part of national and local support measures to rejuvenate rural towns and villages throughout Ireland.
Selection of Projects for 2017 will be by way of a competitive process. Wicklow County Council, in consultation with local town/village community and business interests, will develop detailed applications for submission to the DAHRRGA on or before 30th June, 2017. The DAHRRGA will assess the detailed applications and select the projects which are considered appropriate for funding.
An outline document for the Town and Village Renewal Scheme 2017 and an Expression of Interest form are available to download from the Council’s website www.wicklowcoco.ie
Local town/village community and business interests should carefully read the outline document and submit Expressions of Interest for proposed projects such that the projects are compatible with the selection criteria outlined.
In general the value of any project can extend from €20,000 to a maximum of €100,000. A higher maximum grant of €200,000 will be considered for a limited number of projects where a robust case can be made demonstrating exceptionally strong economic benefit to a town.
Projects which display the following will be considered High Priority by DAHRRGA for assessment purposes:
- Projects that support entrepreneurship (e.g. development of Enterprise Hubs, Hot Desk Facilities, Digital Hubs, Creative Hubs, training facilities)
- Integrated approaches to developing individual sectors within the town and/or its environs (e.g. artisan food hubs, craft hubs)
- Projects which demonstrate collaboration between town centre businesses and the surrounding area to produce economic benefit
- Tourism initiatives
- Enhancement of heritage and/or other community assets
- Town safety and accessibility enhancements
- Provision/enhancement of leisure facilities (e.g. Town Parks, walking trails)
- Conducting/commissioning of Town/Village health check
- Development of quality marks, such as Purple Flag, Heritage Town, etc
Full involvement by business interests and community interests will be an essential feature of successful projects.
Wicklow County Council can select up to 15 proposals for development into detailed applications to be submitted to the Department.
The Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs will assess the detailed applications and will approve up to 300 of the best projects nationally for funding, depending on the quality of the projects and the level of funding sought.
The closing date for receipt of Expressions of Interest is 12 noon Friday 19th May, 2017.