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18 October 2009

DVCA meeting with GROW South Antrim Rural Programme Manager, Emma Stubbs


Members of Doagh Village Community Association attended a meeting with "GROW South Antrim" Rural Development Programme Manager, Emma Stubbs on Monday, 19 October 2009. The purpose of the meeting was to learn something of the funding opportunities available to the rural communities, especially in south-east Antrim.

The session was helpful and productive, indicating that there were several criteria and themes under the various headings suitably placed to give the community in Doagh every chance to develop many improvements in aspects of village life. Many of these opportunities arose under measures contained within the Basic Services or Village Renewal strands.

Emma pointed out that eligible expenditure for grant aid can be awarded towards capital and resource costs

eg Capital Items, including building works and sineage
Non-mobile equipment
Feasibility studies and business plans
Professional fees
Non-eligible items:
Projects that have already commenced
Projects creating economic replacement
Retail enterprises
General service or distribution businesses
The purchase of land and buildings
Mobile equipment, including vehicles
Business running costs
Own labour costs
Existing festivals and events
Provision of additional B&B spaces

Eligible areas
These should be project based or demonstrate an impact in an area with less than 4,500 residents.

More information can be found on the GROW website: www.growsouthantrim.com

The latter part of the session was devoted to exploring future possibilities for developing and improving Doagh, with the main emphasis on assessing local needs and encouraging all of the key community organisations to co-operate and work effectively together.

Final plans have not yet been released for rolling out the Village Renewal initiative as these are still being considered. It was expected that they should be in place early in the new year.

Village Development would be rolled out in 2 Phases :-
1.Village Plan Programme.
Support villages to create a vision and integrated development plan for a 5 year period
2.Capital Infrastructure Programme
Grants to help implement village plans, eg building, upgrading, landscaping, signage and resource support


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