I thank the Deputy for his question. The Creative Ireland programme is a five-year, all-of-Government, culture-based initiative, led by my Department, that emphasises the importance of human creativity for individual, community and societal well-being. When we talk about creativity, we are talking about it in its widest possible sense, including, as the Deputy mentioned, traditional heritage-based activity.
The main source of funding for local craft enterprises under the Creative Ireland programme is pillar 2, enabling creativity in every community. In 2019, my Department allocated a sum of €2 million and the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government allocated a sum of €1 million to all 31 local authorities, which is a total of €96,000 each approximately, to enable them to support an extensive programme of activities, events and initiatives in each county. Each local authority has established a Creative Ireland co-ordinator and a local culture team to manage and allocate this funding in accordance with local needs and in line with their five-year culture and creativity strategies.
Projects funded include arts projects, grant schemes, concerts, conferences, exhibitions, festivals, outreach projects, publications, research programmes and workshops, among other activities. They cover topics such as archaeology, architecture, biodiversity, crafts, heritage, dance, film, history, literature, music, photography, poetry, storytelling, theatre and the visual arts. The Deputy’s constituency of Tipperary has a very rich programme in place with some great examples of heritage related projects. For example, in 2018, the local culture team, with the support of the Creative Ireland programme, funded Ode on a Castle and a Tower, a communal drawing project carried out as part of the community engagement on a project of heritage-led regeneration works on the streetscape in Carrick-on-Suir.
Additional information not given on the floor of the House
In addition to this core funding, the Creative Ireland programme has allocated €15,000 to each local authority outside of Dublin and €75,000 each to the four local authorities in Dublin to develop a special programme of events for Cruinniú na nÓg, the national day of creativity for children and young people. Cruinniú na nÓg is taking place on 15 June 2019 and includes a range of traditional heritage based activities for all ages. Full details of the programme can be found on the Creative Ireland programme website.