Clare PPN Submissions to the Draft Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy

Clare PPN Submissions to the Draft Regional Spatial Economic Strategy, March 8th 2019

Clare PPN made one general submission to the Draft Regional Economic and Spatial Strategy and one which was drafted by our member Clare Women’s Network which dealt specifically with the position of women in relation to the Draft Strategy.

You can read both submissions here:

RSES Submission from Clare PPN March 2019

Clare PPN Clare Women’s Network Submission for Draft RSES

We wish to thank all of those who provided input to our submissions. We’ll keep an eye out for any updates and keep you posted on them.




Help Clare PPN make a submission to the Draft Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy?

Please help us to make an informed submission to the Draft Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy.

We have put together this survey to make it easier for you and there is more information below on what the strategy is for and what it contains. Please complete the survey by March 6th at 5pm so that we can get our joint submission in by the deadline 

Draft Regional & Spatial Economic Strategy

The Southern Regional Assembly have prepared a draft Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy (RSES) for the whole of the Southern Region for the period 2019-2031. The draft RSES provides a long-term regional level strategic planning and economic framework, in support of the implementation of the National Planning Framework, for the future physical, economic and social developments for the Southern Region.

To view the draft RSES and to make a personal submission or observation click here: Draft RSES

Clare PPN attended an information session on 13th February.  The slides presented at this event can be viewed here: Draft RSES info slides

The draft RSES is a consultation document and the Southern Regional Assembly will consider all submissions sent to on or before 5.00pm Friday 8th March 2019. 

Submissions can also be made to on or before 5.00pm Wednesday 6th March 2019 or you can take our survey linked above.

Clare projects benefit from €6.8m announcement – Rural Regeneration & Development Fund

Clare projects benefit from €6.8m announcement

Clare County Council has been successful in securing funding for five separate rural regeneration and development projects under the €1 billion Rural Regeneration and Development Fund (RRDF), a key component of Project Ireland 2040.

€6.8 million has been secured for projects in Loop Head, Lahinch, Doolin, Kilrush and Holy Island.

All RRDF projects applications were prepared and submitted to deliver on the targets of the Clare Rural Development Strategy. This involved collaboration across various Council departments, Municipal Districts, local communities and specific partnerships with Kilrush Amenity Trust and Lahinch Seaworld as stakeholders.


  • Lahinch Seaworld and Town Upgrade Project (€2,860,000): This project is a substantial upgrade of the Lahinch Seaworld community-run facility and associated public realm works in the town. It includes: The retrofitting of the Seaworld building; new public toilets; public realm works; completion of building of new Surf Rescue and Training Centre, Lahinch sports field, new car park and amenity area.
  • Vandeleur Estate, Kilrush (€1,720,000): This project will restore part of the historic Vandeleur Estate, which has been in existence since 1808. The project will respect the existing facilities and buildings within the surrounding area and will include a new museum; and development of arts and crafts facilities to promote local heritage.
  • Loop Head Visitor Attraction (€868,500): This is a significant tourism project which will refurbish and expand the facilities at the historic Loop Head visitor lighthouse attraction with a view to enhancing the capacity and attractiveness of the lighthouse.  The project will assist in the enhancement of the existing tourism offering in the area, delivering benefits to the wider community through increased activity.
  • Inis Cealtra Island (€920,500): Clare County Council will develop a detailed design for a visitor centre, a design for a new boat landing point including visitor trails and the production of an interpretation strategy for the island.
  • Doolin Pier: Clare County Council will develop a masterplan to develop a new visitor and tourist Centre at Doolin pier.

A separate Clare project has also benefited from funding totalling €666,300. Fáilte Ireland will develop a plan to solve critical congestion and visitor management issues along the Wild Atlantic Way at 15 key locations within the counties of Clare and Kerry.

View the list of successful applicant here: RRDF Successful Projects


Clare PPN report from the Briefing on the Urban and Rural Regeneration Funds Wed, 5th September 2018

Report on briefing session on the Urban and Rural Regeneration Funds September 2018

Clare PPN Staff member Sarah Ferrigan attended a workshop last Wednesday 5th September aimed at organisations who intend to apply for funding under either the Urban or Rural Regeneration Funds.  Read her report below and see also the attached PDFS which were provided at the session.

Background: The Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (DHPLG) together with Department of Rural and Community Development (DRCD) held a joint regional briefing in respect of both the Urban and Rural Regeneration Funds that were launched in July as part of Project Ireland 2040.  The briefing was intended to assist and inform bodies that may be considering making a bid for funding to either or both Funds, particularly now as bids are being formulated and questions arise.

Provision is made in the National Development Plan (NDP) for €2bn to 2027 for the urban fund and €1bn to 2027 for the rural fund, to support implementation of the National Planning Framework (NPF).

PDFs from the briefing:

Project Ireland 2040 and the URDF

Urban Regeneration & Development Funds 2018

Sarah’s report:

Report on Southern Regional Assembly Meeting, 5 September, Silver Springs Cork.

4 billion over 10 years for transformational projects

  • Urban Regional Development Fund (URDF) – 2 billion
  • Rural Regional Development Fund (RRDF) – 1 billion
  • Climate action fund – €500k
  • Disruptive Technologies fund – €500k

Category 1 – No minimum bid, shovel ready for 2019, consents & planning in place. Collaboration with bodies/organisations used to government funding as reporting and auditing requirement onerous.

Category 2 – €500,000 minimum bid, pipeline projects or project development with clear potential possibly leading to Category 1 bid in following year.

Urban Regional Development Fund (URDF)

  • Urban centres with population greater than 10,000
  • Towns with population between 2,500 and 10,000
  • administered by Department of Housing, Planning & Local Government
  • 2 billion to 2027
  • Supports National Planning Framework (NPF) and National Development Plan (NDP)
  • Ideally local authority led but with partners (community/private sectors)
  • Planning must be in place or in progress by the end of January 2019
  • Category 1 and 2 can be clustered to get to 10m.
  • 75% funding with matched of 25%

Rural Regional Development Fund (RRDF)

  • Rural town with population less than 2,500
  • Towns with population between 2,500 and 10,000
  • Administered by Department of Community & Rural Development
  • 1 billion to 2027 (initial €315 million 2019-2022)
  • Supports National Planning Framework (NPF)
  • Encourages collaboration ( with regard to capacity of partners)
  • Has a social and economic impact
  • Planning permission must be in place at time of contract
  • Towns can cluster projects into one application
  • Avoid duplication but can develop an existing project only if it could not have been done in another way
  • Land valuation can be used as matched funding
  • Up to 80% funding with at least 20% matched

*NOTE: A decision has yet to be made as to whether LEADER funding can be used as matched funding


Closing dates:

  • RRDF 27th September
  • URDF 28th September

Followed by approvals in November and project commencement in January 2019.  Next call in mid – 2019


High degree of competition locally? Organisations should work together to make a submission for their town and utilise each other’s expertise

Are closing dates flexible? This is a multi-year programme.   If you miss this round get ready for the next one.  They do not want to reallocate money from a project whose application was rushed and therefore unsustainable

Organisations often have no control over delays in planning/CPO’s/legal matters.  What happens if it drags on? As above it is a multi-year programme however if progress is being made by January 2019 it will be assessed.

Can applications be made for area based programmes within a city? Yes as long as it is a project that would not have occurred otherwise and must be concentrated in an area of the city that needs it the most.

What about housing? Can some projects be mixed use to include social housing? The fund is not for housing but to provide the infrastructure and amenities to be ready for new housing.

Can it be used to join up greenways? The greenway fund is separate and geographical areas need to come together to decide the viability of joining up greenways.

If an organisation has unspent money from funds awarded in 2017 can it be utilised as matched funding? It depends on who awarded the funding, what its purpose was and if you have permission.

Can land acquisition be part of expenditure? Yes

RRDF guidelines say that the project should be replicable? Great if easily replicable but not the be all and end all

Are funds already spent on a project allowed as expenditure in application? No, sunk cost are not allowed in application.

National Report on Public Participation Networks in 2016

Minister Kyne Announces publication of First PPN Annual Report

Seán Kyne, TD, Minister of State at the Department of Rural and Community Development and the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment today (20/12/1/17) announced the publication of the First Annual Report of the National Public Participation Network (PPN) Advisory Group.

The Advisory Group, which was established in early 2016 on foot of recommendations of the Working Group on Citizen Engagement with Local Government, has the job of advising and supporting the Department of Rural and Community Development in the operation and development of the PPNs.

In June of this year, each PPN was required to complete an Annual Report in respect of its activities in 2016 – their first full year of operation. The completion of the report was a joint effort by both the PPNs and the local authorities and was designed to capture specific non personal data and certain indicators relating to the activities of the PPN.

The Minister remarked that this report “was itself clear evidence to the tremendous work that has been undertaken by PPNs in such a very short space of time”.  PPNs have now been established in all local authority areas with some 12,000 organisations registered with them by the beginning of 2017 with all indications showing the PPNs continued to grow in the last twelve months.

The report contains a number of recommendations which will be considered by the National Advisory Group and reported on to the Department of Rural & Community Development.

The Minister concluded by saying that “PPNs, are the future. They are the main link through which the local authority connects with the community, voluntary, environmental and social inclusion sectors and they are uniquely placed to bring a diversity of voices and interests to the decision making process. I would encourage those organisations who have not yet signed up to their local PPN to do so as soon as possible in order to ensure that their voice is heard and that they play a role in the future development of their Public Participation Network.”

You can read the report here:  reportonppns2016