An Taoiseach Micheál Martin.

Over €1M for six projects under Shared Island scheme

Cavan is to receive €400,000 for two major cross border projects, as part of the Shared Island Fund.

Announced at the Town Hall in Cavan on Friday, the projects see substantial partnership between Cavan County Council and Fermanagh and Omagh District Council.

€250,000 will go towards works at Castle Saunderson, Co Cavan and Castle Caldwell, Co Fermanagh. Work to advance a series of interlinked capital works at the two iconic sites will take place.

Another €150,000 is going to Cavan County Council to create a masterplan for the Cuilcagh Mountain area and “to build on the views and traditions of all communities”. That project also includes the National Parks and Wildlife Service, Ulster Wildlife, Cuilcagh Lakelands UNESCO Global Geopark Ambassadors and the Geopark Business Network.

Nationally, more than €4.3m has been allocated to 15 lead local authorities in the South, working in partnership with nine Councils in Northern Ireland to develop collaborative cross-border investment projects over the next 12 months.

The successful projects are spread across a range of sectors including biodiversity, tourism, decarbonisation, the circular economy, rural and urban regeneration, education, business innovation; and cultural and creative industries.

Cathaoirleach of Cavan County Council, Councillor John Paul Feeley said “I welcome today’s announcement by An Taoiseach, which will allow Cavan County Council and its cross-border partners to explore the immense shared potential for development of innovative and exciting sustainable tourism, business development, and climate action projects across the island of Ireland.”

Chief Executive of Cavan County Council, Mr Tommy Ryan said, “Cavan County Council is a partner in five of the 25 projects funded today, acting as lead agency on two. We look forward to leading and collaborating with our project partners, north and south, to build upon the excellent work completed to date on these applications.”

Director of Service for Planning, Community, Enterprise and Tourism with Cavan County Council, Mr Brendan Jennings said, “The five funded projects today showcase the breadth of possibility for cross-border collaboration that exists in this region. Through our UNESCO-accredited Cuilcagh Lakelands Global Geopark, Cavan and Fermanagh are already collaborating in the area of sustainable tourism and Cross-Border Masterplan for Cuilcagh and the proposal to develop Castles Saunderson and Caldwell in particular will further develop this unique shared resource.”

Deputy Brendan Smith (FF) welcomed the injection of funds:

“I very much welcome this funding, which has been enabled by the establishment of the Shared Island Initiative by An Taoiseach. I was very glad to support both of our local authorities in their detailed applications for grant aid.

While Fianna Fáil TD Niamh Smyth has also welcomed the funding:

"Today’s funding announcement sets out an ambitious, cross-Government programme of work, which will bring communities, North and South, together to work on shared strategic priorities.

Fianna Fáil's Robbie Gallagher was equally delighted.

The Monaghan senator said: “I’m delighted to see this significant funding for Monaghan and Cavan which will fund a number of projects across sectors such as biodiversity, tourism, decarbonisation, the circular economy, rural and urban regeneration, education, business innovation; and cultural and creative industries.

“This project and investment is a vote of confidence in the Shared Island Fund and shows the value of developing collaborative cross-border investment."