The Peatlands Community Engagement Scheme aims to encourage local communities, groups, schools and interested parties to engage with my Department in relation to the conservation of raised bog special areas of conservation, natural heritage areas and other raised bog areas and to promote public engagement and awareness of our natural heritage.
On 24 April this year, I announced a call for applications for the 2019 peatlands community engagement scheme. The scheme provides for grant funding of 75% of the total cost of a project. This year, I introduced a phased payment option of the total grant. To facilitate start-up, 30% of the funding for a project may be payable on acceptance of the grant and meeting start up conditions.
Applications were accepted for the scheme up to the end of May 2019.
In July 2019, I approved grant funding of just under €131,000 to thirteen local community groups and organisations, with €16,245 to be provided to seven of these groups through the phased payment option.
Funding was awarded to three local groups in County Galway:
1. Galway Telework Co-op Society Ltd. , Mountbellew, County Galway was awarded funding of €12,500 for outdoor information panels, indoor display columns for its Visitor Centre, outdoor seating and to undertake a bird survey and report for Carrownagappul Bog special area of conservation.
2. Looscaun Shannonside Rural Development , County Galway was awarded funding of €25,000 to assist in the development of a national walking and cycling trail through Clonmoylan Bog/ Barroughter Bog special areas of conservation. Funding is being provided to engage the services of a project manager and carry out a number of environmental surveys.
3. Glenamaddy Tidy Towns, County Galway was awarded funding of €15,000 for the proposed upgrade of two walking trail loops around Frass Clooncon Bog, part of the Lisnageeragh Bog and Ballinstack Turlough special area of conservation, including the installation of interpretive signage, to establish a link return to the start point via a bog bridge ad improve/extend the current parking area.
No applications were received from local groups / organisations from County Mayo.