Fáilte Ireland has announced that it is investing €15.5 million through local authorities to boost the attractiveness and tourism appeal of up to 62 towns across Ireland.
Minister of state for tourism and sport Brendan Griffin made the announcement on Wednesday March 27 at an event in Dublin where officials from all local authorities gathered to be briefed on the new investment scheme.
Through the scheme, every local authority in the country will be able to bid for funding of between €250,000 and €500,000 to develop up to two towns in their area which have the potential to become a "destination town" for tourists.
With Fáilte Ireland research consistently showing that attractive towns and cities are key motivators for overseas holidaymakers coming to Ireland, the new scheme will provide funding to councils to enhance public spaces such as squares, streetscapes and markets in a way that will engage tourists.
The "destination towns" will need to demonstrate their capacity and appeal to attract more international visitors to stay overnight - a key driver of spend.
"A Great Opportunity"
Griffin stated, "I’m delighted to unveil Fáilte Ireland’s new investment scheme, which will provide a significant boost for towns across the country with untapped tourism potential. This scheme is a great opportunity for towns which aren’t fully active in the tourism industry to look at how their local economy can benefit from increased tourism activity as well as the physical development the scheme will bring. I am pleased to see Fáilte Ireland working closely with local communities, councils and businesses to create a better regional spread of visitors and revenue, and [this] funding announcement marks a real step-change in the way we look at towns as drivers of tourism."
Applications for the scheme will be accepted from local authorities between April and September.
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