The Minister for Rural and Community Development, Michael Ring TD, will today (22nd March 2019) open the Piltown Enterprise Centre in Piltown, Co. Kilkenny.
Minister Ring visited Kilkenny as part of the Government’s Rural Opportunity roadshow which kicks off in Thomastown today.
He took the opportunity to visit other initiatives supported through his Department including the Piltown Enterprise Centre and the site of the future Thomastown Library and Enterprise Hub. The project has recently allocated over €2 million through the Government’s Rural Regeneration and Development Fund.
The Piltown Enterprise Centre was completed with the assistance of funding received through the Town and Village Renewal Scheme which is operated by Minister Ring’s Department. Under the 2017 Town and Village Renewal Scheme, Piltown, Co. Kilkenny received funding of €200,000 for the Piltown Enterprise Centre.
Minister Ring said: “I was delighted in 2017 to be able to allocate €200,000 from the Town and Village Renewal Scheme to fund the Piltown Enterprise Centre. It is wonderful to see here how this amount of funding can make such a difference to a town.
“The Town and Village Renewal Scheme is an important part of the Government’s work to rejuvenate rural Ireland and is having a significant impact on towns and villages across the country. The main aim of the Scheme is to support the revitalisation of towns and villages in order to improve the living and working environment for their communities.”
Projects in Kilkenny have received funding of almost €2 million under the Town and Village Renewal Scheme since it was launched in 2016.
Phase 2 of this project involved construction of a custom-built Enterprise Hub (2,563 sq. feet) adjacent to the existing building in the centre of Piltown village. From this Enterprise Hub support will be provided to those wishing to start up in business locally.
The overall costs of Phase 2 was in the region of €260,000 of which the sum of €200,000 was allocated under the 2017 Town and Village Renewal Scheme and the balance of €60,000 has been met by locally matching funding. This project is now completed.
Speaking in relation to the future Thomastown Library and Enterprise Hub, Minister Ring said:
“Last May I visited the old sportshall where this project will be located and it was clear to me that it had huge potential as a resource for the town. I commend the local community and for their Trojan work in conjunction with Kilkenny County Council for getting this project over the line.
“The Rural Regeneration and Development Fund allocation of more than €2 million for Thomastown will also support public realm works in Lowe and Logan Streets; the renovation of the former court house into a Craft and Design Centre, in conjunction with the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland; and the upgrade of the existing Quayside Carpark to improve access to the town.
“In short it will have a transformative impact on Thomastown. This is what the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund is all about.”
The Minister went on to say: “My role as Minister for Rural and Community Development affords me the opportunity to engage with people around the country and see the wonderful results of the work of many local communities big and small and we can see that happening here today in Kilkenny.”
“I believe that together we will continue to develop Ireland at a regional and local level with financial support coming from schemes like those managed by my Department to help local communities and rural areas develop further enterprise and employment opportunities.”
Special Adviser to Michael Ring TD, Minister for Rural and Community Development
The Department of Rural and Community Development Press Office
076-1006843 / 087-1734633
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