Minister for the Environment, Phil Hogan has sanctioned over € 1\4 million for Thomastown Community Centre. The funding of €277,488 will be provided by Kilkenny LEADER Partnership towards the refurbishment of the existing community centre and concert hall in Thomastown.
This funding is provided under the Village Renewal and Development measure of the Rural Development Programme (RDP) 2007-2013 and will provide the necessary financial support to develop refurbish the concert hall balcony and stage area as well as improve the facilities in general in the hall.
The facility is already part of a larger Community Centre Complex but has gone into a bad state of repair in recent years and this funding will facilitate the renovation of the building to provide a centre that is warm, welcoming and safe for the community.
Announcing the funding Minister Hogan said that this funding will allow Thomastown Community Centre Ltd to reintroduce a building of architectural significance into use for community activities.
“Such facilities are critical to the development and maintenance of sustainable rural communities and provide not only places to participate in cultural activities but also places where people can gather and meet in comfortable and safe surroundings”, he said.
Minister Hogan commend the communities of Thomastown and its surrounding hinterland for their determination to facilitate the refurbishment of this wonderful facility. “The LEADER elements of the Rural Development Programme currently offer and will continue to offer significant financial resources to communities all over Ireland going forward”, he said.
“With a budget of €96 million for 2012, it is critically important that communities continue to come up with ideas that will reinvigorate their localities and avail of the resources available to develop all aspects of their communities into the future.
“This project will now go back to the Board of Kilkenny LEADER Partnership for the final approval. This is in line with the EU’s “bottom-up” approach to rural development,” he added.