Ireland’s towns and villages are the focus of the social, commercial and civic life of their wider communities. The significant deterioration of many small towns and villages throughout the country is clearly visible in the form of empty shops, abandoned buildings, vacant lands and a generally poor environment to live in or visit. Targeted action is needed to arrest this decline and harness the regeneration potential of our towns and villages to support economic recovery. This new scheme to support town and village regeneration is part of a concerted effort by Government to support rural development.
The central aim of the scheme is to support the revitalisation of towns and villages in order to improve the living and working environment of their communities and increase their potential to support increased economic activity into the future. The type of projects to be funded under this initiative is primarily a matter for the local authorities (LAs) to identify in partnership with local business and communities. However, the overall intention of the funding is to:
- increase the attractiveness of the town or village as a local commercial and social centre, and as a result increase its sustainability as a place in which to live and work;
- enhance the towns/village environment and amenities in the interests of residents, businesses, and visitors;
- promote the town/village’s potential for tourism and as a centre for culture and local heritage, thus enhancing the sense of identity – physically and socially.