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Minister Noonan welcomes confirmation of Irish Heritage Sector sharing in European Heritage Skills Funding

The Minister for State for Heritage and Electoral Reform, Malcolm Noonan, TD, today welcomed news that a pan-European consortium, including the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage and also the Heritage Council, has been awarded €4m funding under the Erasmus+ Programme for a lasting, comprehensive sectoral strategy that aims to ensure Europe retains the necessary cultural heritage skills to support sustainable societies and economies.

The winning consortium contains 21 cultural heritage organisations from 14 countries throughout the EU. Ireland will receive over €200k in funding through its participation in this initiative.

The award will enable Ireland to take a leading role in a four year European project called Cultural Heritage Actions to Refine Training, Education and Roles (CHARTER). It will develop a skills strategy to address skills gaps and to improve cultural heritage education and training at national and EU level.

The Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage is a leading partner in the CHARTER consortium, with the Heritage Council as an affiliate partner and the Office of Public Works (OPW) an associate partner.

Speaking today, Minister Noonan said:

“I have a long-standing interest in promoting traditional skills training to ensure we can repair and maintain our irreplaceable built heritage and to promote high quality, heritage-led regeneration of our towns and cities. I believe that this Involvement in the CHARTER project will help us to implement our Programme for Government commitment to encourage traditional building skills and I hope it will assist us in addressing the shortage of expert craftspeople in traditional building and conservation as well as providing rewarding careers to those who may not previously have considered it.”