€5.3m REDZ funding will stimulate economic development in rural towns and their hinterlands – Minister Humphreys

The Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, Heather Humphreys, TD, has today (Monday) announced details of the €5.3 million REDZ (Rural Economic Development Zones) initiative, which aims to stimulate economic development in rural towns and their hinterlands.

Under the 2016 REDZ scheme, just over €5.3 million is being approved to 41 projects nationwide, with €1.9 million going to projects in the North and Western Region, €1.3 million for projects in the Southern Region and €2.1 million for projects in the Eastern and Midlands Region.

Announcing the funding, Minister Humphreys said:

“The REDZ scheme aims to improve links between rural towns and their hinterlands to stimulate activity at a local level. It is one of a number of schemes which my Department has been rolling out to boost economic activity and improve living standards across rural Ireland.

“This initiative encourages Local Authorities to work with local communities, business interests and other State bodies, to identify areas of greatest economic need which can make better use of their local assets to generate economic activity. This is all about empowering local communities to provide local residents with local opportunities.

“The need to work collaboratively is at the heart of the REDZ concept and a number of the REDZ 2016 projects approved for funding today support this approach, building on already established collaborations or indeed creating new collaborations.

“One of the strengths of the REDZ initiative is that it encourages Local Authorities and other stakeholders to work across administrative boundaries in neighbouring counties and throughout their own regions. This approach is critical to supporting both rural and regional development. 

“The REDZ programme forms part of a suite of measures within my Department which aim to support regeneration in rural towns and villages. Funding has previously been provided to towns and villages across the country under the Town and Village Renewal Scheme. Both schemes will work in a complementary way to ensure that all rural areas have strong economic and social centres which support a higher quality of life for both town dwellers and those who live in the rural hinterlands.”


The 2016 REDZ initiative is part of the Government’s programme for Rural Development.  Other initiatives recently introduced by Government as part of this programme include the new €10 million Town and Village Renewal Scheme, the approval of almost €7.5 million to support rural recreation infrastructure, the establishment of a National Taskforce to identify practical measures which can be taken in the short-term to improve Broadband and Mobile Phone Coverage in rural areas, and the establishment of two Regional Broadband Action Groups to prepare for the roll-out of broadband under the National Broadband Plan.

Rural Economic Development Zones (REDZ)

Rural Economic Development Zones (REDZ) are functional, rather than administrative geographic, areas that reflect the spatial patterns of local economic activities and development processes.  They are, in effect, the sub-county zones within which most people live and work.

The central objective of the REDZ model is to utilise the synergies and interdependencies between rural towns and their hinterlands to generate economic activity in the local area.  The involvement of local communities, including the business community, is a key element in the REDZ model.

Collaboration between Local Authorities, local communities and business interests will be an essential part of the scheme and the involvement of other State agencies, Regional Skills Fora, etc., is also encouraged where they have a role in supporting local economic development.

Full details of the scheme will issue to Local Authorities within the next week.

Rural Economic Development Zones (REDZ) 2016: Approved Projects
East and Midlands Region County Amount Approved  Project Details:
Business of Food Laois €67,200 Ten month programme of workshops, mentoring sessions and events designed to assist people in the Food Service Industry to improve their business.
Fab lab Portarlington Laois €32,800 Communal Office for training hot-desking
Ardee (Louth Age Friendly) Louth €100,000 New Service centre located in Ardee – taking a pilot eCommerce approach to deliver improvements in quality of life for older people
Bagnelstown Carlow €100,000 Enhancement of Tourism potential using a multi centre approach in Co Carlow
Ballitore Kildare €100,000 Refurbishment of Ballitore
Banagher Offaly €50,000 Enhance town around marina
Kilcormac Offaly €48,000 To promote  & market awareness of Kilcormac as the gateway to lough Boora Discovery
Mullingar & Athlone Blueways and Greenways Westmeath €96,000 Blueways and Greenways unlocking potential Athlone Municipal District
Royal Canal to Lough Owel Amenity Area Westmeath €96,000 The Royal Canal Cycleway Extension Mullingar Municipal District
Corlea Walking Route Longford Longford €100,000 Walking Route
Corn Hill Amenity Walk Project Longford €50,000 Develop a walking loop around the top of Corn Hill on the exterior boundaries of the forest area
Kells Meath €200,000 Continued Development of ‘International Technology Hub’at Kells Enterprise & Technology Centre
Arklow Wicklow €150,556 Develop a heritage and visitor activity centre based on the world renowned Arklow Pottery
Granard Motte, Longford Longford €200,000 Develop Interpretive Centre around Granard Motte
Birr Castle Offaly €316,870 Provision of Education Centre Birr, Co. Offaly
Northern and Western      
Bailieborough Cavan €100,000.00 Redevelopment of Bailieborough Courthouse and Bridewell as an Economic and Tourism Hub
Ballyshannon The Gables Donegal €48,000.00 Up grading of facilities in town to enhance area for tourism.
Dunree Fort Donegal €50,000.00 Coffee Shop & Pier Facilities
Erris Beo, Gaoth Sáile, Béal an Mhuirthead Mayo €50,000.00 Development of enterprise units including shared secretariat and hot desk facilities
Westport Enterprise Centre Mayo €50,000.00 Redevelopment of a vacant commercial property into a state of the art enterprise centre
Tubbercurry Enterprise Centre Sligo €100,000.00 Support to Enterprise Centre and town development
Castlerea Food Hub etc Roscommon €100,000.00 Castlerea Food Hub to train new food producers etc – food training and development kitchen
Glenamaddy, An Cheathrú Rua, Galway Rural, Oranmore and Gort Galway €100,000.00 Build a capacity building programme within five REDZ zones, Glenamaddy, An Cheathrú Rua, Galway Rural, Oranmore and Gort Develop a REDZ zone team
Clones Monaghan €100,000.00 Greenway, car Park,Industrial sites at Clones enterprise Park,Signage,    PRIORITY 1
Carrickmacross Monaghan €100,000.00 Develop Enterprise Sites and develop Market House for Multipurpose use
Ballinmore REDZ Leitrim €100,000.00 Assist towards the development of an Angling Centre
Carrick on Shannon Leitrim €200,000.00 Develop a Taste Leitrim Food Tourism & Enterprise Zone
Glenties Donegal €200,000.00 Completion of Community Enterprise Centre in Glenties
Ox Mountain Sligo €200,000.00 Ox Mountains Mountain Biking Centre & Wild Nephin Wilderness
IWAK Sligo €400,000.00 Discovery centre at Ireland West Airport and Regional branding
Southern Region
Dunmore East & Hinterland Waterford €100,000 Upgrading work to the existing coastal path for a cliff walk
Bunclody Carrigduff Wexford €100,000 Revitalisation of Bunclody and running of festivals/events linked to tourism and artisan foods supporting speciality food producers
Kilmallock/Charleville Engineering Hub Limerick €100,000 Engineering Cluster
North Cork Blueway Feasibility Study Cork €40,000 Undertake a North Cork Blueway Feasibility Study
Beara Bridle way Cork €48,000 Develop a Horse riding trail
Innistioge & Woodstock House Kilkenny €200,000 Develop gardens and Car Park
Killorglin & Killarney (McGillycuddy Reeks) Kerry €150,195 MacGillycuddy Reeks, habitat restoration/trail repair. Supervision of participants.
Scariff/Nenagh Clare €200,000 Scoping, Developing, Marketing & promoting the Lough Derg Blueway
Kilmallock Charleville Loop walk Limerick €200,000 Loop Walk in Kilmallock (Charleville)
Ardfinnan / Clonmel Sports Club Tipperary €200,000 Develop a sports Hub in Clonmel and Ardfinnan (connected by River Suir)
Munster Vales Tipperary €399,221.00 Munster Vales – Inter territorial covering parts of counties Tipperary, Limerick, Waterford & Cork. (Spanning approx 11 REDZ including Tipperary, Fethard, Cahir, Carrick on Suir, Waterford, Tramore, Lismore, Fermoy, Rathnuire / Charleville, Limerick and Mallow.)

Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, 23 Kildare Street, Dublin , D02 TD30. Tel: 01 631 3800 / LoCall: 1890 383 000

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