Fáilte Ireland has announced the first three visitor attractions to be awarded major funding through its Grants Scheme for Large Tourism Projects 2020, which is intended to help deliver world-class tourist experiences, boost overseas visitor growth and create jobs.
The VAULTS.LIVE® in Dublin, Kilkenny’s Butler Gallery and Sligo Pontoon Jetty are the first of 24 shortlisted projects to be awarded delivery grants under the scheme for implementation of their projects. The scheme provides investment to develop new, or boost existing, tourism experiences and attractions across Ireland.
Minister of State for Tourism and Sport Brendan Griffin visited Evan’s Almshouse in Kilkenny on Wednesday May 30, which will become the new home to the Butler Gallery through this grant. Welcoming the funding, he said, “I’m delighted that awards are now being made under this scheme, which will help to boost visitors to the country’s regions, create jobs and growth, and help to develop local areas. This kind of investment is absolutely critical in ensuring that Ireland’s tourist attractions are world-class and that the industry is strong and sustainable into the future. I know that the funding announced today will be a major boost to VAULTS.LIVE®, the Butler Gallery and Sligo Pontoon Jetty, and I look forward to further investment in other projects around the country through the scheme.”
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Meanwhile, Fáilte Ireland CEO Paul Kelly commented, “We believe that sustainable growth in tourism will depend on greater regionality and seasonality. Investment in tourism projects like these forms one strand of Fáilte Ireland’s approach to achieving this. At the heart of successful tourism is the visitor experience and we’re committed to building great experiences for visitors to enjoy around the country and throughout the year. The interest we received in this scheme was huge and there was a very high calibre of applications. We are delighted to announce the first three projects and this funding will help to transform what these destinations can offer visitors.”
The Grants Scheme for Large Tourism Projects, which was launched in 2016 and runs up to 2020, is highly competitive and received 115 applications as part of its first call out to the public, private and voluntary sectors. Following an evaluation process, 24 tourism projects progressed to Stage 2 of the process. The two-stage application process was put in place to allow Fáilte Ireland to engage with projects at an early stage in their development and a total of €1.1 million was awarded to projects to further develop their proposals. The three projects that were awarded Stage 2 Delivery Grants on Wednesday May 30 were the first to be announced. Final decisions on Delivery Grant funding for the remaining 21 projects will be made over the course of 2018 and 2019 as they reach readiness.
© 2018 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Dave Simpson. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.