Entente Florale judges visit the square in Inistioge
The Minister for Rural and Community Development, Michael Ring TD, today announced that five Kilkenny hubs are among 224 rural towns and villages across the country to receive funding under the 2018 Town and Village Renewal Scheme. Minister John Paul Phelan has confirmed that Inistioge, Thomastown, Coon, Castlecomer and Ballyhale Knocktopher will benefit from the initiative, intended to enhance rural towns and villages, with a particular emphasis on stimulating economic development.
The biggest winners are Thomastown and Inistioge. Each gets €200,000. In Thomastown, the money will be used to convert the local community hall into a library with incubation space for businesses to allow them to hotdesk. Meanwhile in Inistioge, the funding will be used to restore and improve the village square and complete works along the River Park, Minister Phelan confirmed.
Other beneficiaries are Ballyhale/Knocktopher where €100,000 has been allocated to build a 400 metre footpath with lighting. The fund also provides €52,280 for what has been described as “a brand new development” for Castlecomer.
Coon has also been granted a whopping €100,000 for completion of a parking area near the playground & recreational area, and the rebuilding of 50m of heritage wall.
Announcing the Kilkenny allocations, Minister Phelan said: “The 2018 Town & Village Renewal Scheme focuses on projects which can help to enhance rural towns and villages, with a particular emphasis on stimulating economic development. I’m delighted to see €652,280 shared across five projects in Kilkenny.
“I want to congratulate local councillors, Michael Doyle, and John Brennan who have been doing Trojan work in their respective communities. This scheme is a key part of the Government’s Action Plan for Rural Development,” Minister Phelan added.
The Town and Village Renewal scheme is an initiative under the Government’s Action Plan for Rural Development, Realising our Rural Potential, and is part of a suite of national and local support measures to rejuvenate rural towns and villages throughout Ireland. It is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development and is administered by the Local Authorities.
Under the 2018 scheme, over €21 million has been allocated by Minister Ring to towns and villages across Ireland. Up to 80% of the total cost for each approved project will be provided by the Department, with the remaining 20% being provided either through community contribution and/or the Local Authority.
It is hoped that this investment, and the restoration of the Square, will make Kilkenny a more attractive and more sustainable places in which to live and work.