Grand aid available for communities

By Esther Hayden

Brian Kehoe of WLD.
Brian Kehoe of WLD.

A total of €300,000 of LEADER funding is now available for community activities throughout the county during the coming months.

This funding which will be overseen by Wexford Local Development will be targeted at three separate categories - the development of walking trails, community arts and culture projects and youth facilities; each of which will receive an allocation of €100,000.

Brian Kehoe, Chief Executive of Wexford Local Development, said that the announcement of this grant aid is a big opportunity for urban and rural communities throughout Co. Wexford.

'The new LEADER Programme will see a substantial investment of several million euro into community organisations in Co. Wexford between now and 2020. The different types of initiatives which we are offering grant aid to were identified as part of a widespread public consultation process which we undertook to draft the LEADER business plan for Wexford, the Local Development Strategy.

'We provided significant support to the development of community based walking trails under the last LEADER programme and the Wexford Walking Trails group which was established in that LEADER programme is now to the forefront of developing and promoting walking trails in our county. Our coastlines and mountains provide fantastic natural amenities throughout Co. Wexford and tourists are now starting to recognise the walking trails which have been developed around them. We see huge potential to develop a niche tourism product selling rural Wexford as an attractive destination for walking trails and this allocation of €100,000 for the further development of walking trails will benefit both tourist and locals alike.

'Wexford has one of the most vibrant community based arts and culture scenes on the country and we want to encourage its further development. Wexford's arts and culture is unique and ranges from traditional to the most contemporary possible. We want to play our part in recognising and encouraging community activists who are making county Wexford a centrepiece of arts and culture.

'One of the clearest messages we received in our LEADER public consultations was that Wexford residents wanted to see more facilities being developed to engage with our younger residents and to provide social, training and recreational outlets for them.

'We took on board the message we received and have made services for young people a key part of the new LEADER programme in Wexford.'

The closing date for receipt of completed forms is 12 noon on Tuesday, March 7.

Wexford People

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