Six towns and villages in Mayo will share €195,000 in Covid-19 adaptions funding, it was announced this week. The towns and villages to benefit from the funding from the Accelerated Measure of the Town and Village Renewal Scheme are Ballina, Castlebar, Claremorris, Westport, Islandeady and Parke.
Ballina will receive €40,000 for the provision of covered public seating and bicycle parking, Castlebar will also receive €40,000 for improvements to the existing market area and the creation of additional linked market area with seating. Claremorris will be receiving €25,000 for remedial works to footpaths and the provision of spaces where local businesses may locate outdoor seating/tables/displays and Westport will be getting €40,000 for the purchase and installation of Christmas lights.
Both Islandeady and Park will be receiving €25,000, with the money going towards the provision of lighting, footpaths and a footbridge for the village in Islandeady and in Parke the money will be used for the installation of a footpath/cycleway in the village to improve access and to facilitate safer school drop-offs.
Fine Gael TD Alan Dillon welcomed the news, saying: "This funding will enable towns and villages to implement immediate measures that will encourage people into towns and villages to shop and socialise, while adhering to public health guidelines.
"Our rural towns and villages have always played a huge role in supporting businesses and communities by providing spaces for people to meet, socialise and shop locally.
"Recognising their importance to the economic and social well-being of rural areas, the Town and Village Renewal Scheme has invested significantly in towns and villages over the last number of years.
"The scheme is now more important than ever to assist businesses and communities to address the challenges that COVID-19 has brought to their towns and villages."
His party colleague Deputy Michael Ring also welcomed the news saying: "The Town and Village Renewal Scheme focuses on projects which can help to enhance rural towns and villages, with a particular emphasis on stimulating economic development.
"I am very pleased that six worthwhile projects in Mayo have received funding under this round. This is very positive news for the six successful projects. I look forward to these projects being brought to fruition and to the benefits being felt by local communities."