A sum of €15m will be available for small towns and villages across Ireland through the 2018 Town and Village Renewal Scheme again this year.
During the next 15 months, up to 200 towns and villages throughout the country, including a number of towns in south and north Westmeath, will benefit from funding through the scheme, which will be made available through Local Authorities to support rural regeneration.
The scheme is specifically targeted at rural towns and villages with populations of less than 10,000 people.
The scheme has been warmly welcomed by Longford-Westmeath Fine Gael TD, Peter Burke, who says the Government funding is welcomed and well needed.
“The towns and villages of rural Ireland are the heart and soul of our rural communities and it is crucial that we revitalise these areas,” Deputy Burke said. “This Government funding is aimed at doing just that. Last year, 10 towns across the county received €600,000 which was a fantastic cash injection.”
Rural and Community Development Minister, Michael Ring, has allocated €15m for the scheme this year, which has been warmly welcomed by Deputy Burke.
“I want to encourage towns and villages across the county to work with the council in preparing innovative and well thought-out projects under the Town and Village Renewal Scheme. I look forward to making representations on behalf of community for funding, and to the announcement of the successful recipients in the coming months,” he said.
Westmeath County Council will advertise for expressions of interest from towns and villages, and will select proposals to be development into detailed applications, which will be submitted to the department by the end of June.
The final project selection will be made in July by the Department of Rural and Community Development. Successful projects will be expected to commence by year-end and can run throughout 2019.
“I know our local businesses and local communities will work hard to develop and implement ideas with the local authority that can make a real and sustainable impact in revitalising rural towns and villages across the country,” Deputy Burke concluded.