- Grants available for tourism and hospitality businesses
- Funding for Local Authorities to develop permanent long-term outdoor facilities
Minister for Tourism Catherine Martin TD and Fáilte Ireland have this morning (March 31st) announced details of a new €17million Scheme for developing outdoor dining capacity nationwide.
The Outdoor Dining Enhancement Scheme comprises two parts and will be delivered in partnership between Fáilte Ireland and Local Authorities across the country. Part One of the Scheme will provide funding for individual tourism and hospitality businesses to develop and increase their own outdoor seating capacity. Funding allocated under Part Two will enable Local Authorities to develop permanent outdoor public dining spaces in towns and urban centres, similar to those that exist in various European cities.
The Minister for Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sport, Gaeltacht and Media, Catherine Martin T.D. is today officially launching the Scheme, which opens for initial applications on April 12th2021.
Announcing the Scheme Minister Catherine Martin said:
“This Scheme has two main objectives: firstly, to enable individual tourism and hospitality businesses increase their dining and seating capacity in the short-term and secondly to enable a long-term strategy for local authorities to develop appropriate permanent weatherproofed outdoor dining infrastructure. The aim is to support jobs and businesses and to transform appropriate outdoor spaces within our cities and towns as welcoming, vibrant places that will help support economic recovery. This funding announcement further strengthens this Government’s commitment to the development of rural towns, as outlined in the ‘Our Rural Future’ plan announced earlier this week.”
Paul Kelly, CEO of Fáilte Ireland added:
“I want to thank Minister Martin for securing this funding and the CCMA for its support with designing and administering it. Part One of the Outdoor Dining Enhancement Scheme relates to Outdoor Seating and Accessories to help tourism and hospitality businesses offset some of the costs incurred in upgrading premises for outdoor dining and seating. Part Two of the Scheme relates to Weatherproofing and Outdoor Dining Infrastructure which focuses on the development of medium to large scale permanent public dining spaces in towns and centres in preparation for welcoming back visitors when it is safe to do so. Each Local Authority can apply for up to €200,000 under this element of the scheme. We have been working closely with the County and City Management Association (CCMA) on behalf of the Local Authorities to design a scheme that will be efficient and practical. We look forward to seeing the results across the country.”
Moira Murrell, Chair of the CCMA Rural Development, Community, Tourism, Culture and Heritage (RCTCH) Committee stated:
“Local Authorities are looking forward to administering this Scheme for individual businesses, as well as delivering year-round all-weather outdoor seating options to boost the appeal and attractiveness of our cities and towns. Following the success of the Street Furniture Grant Scheme, implemented by some Local Authorities in 2020, we look forward to creating outdoor dining experiences around the country that not only benefit locals, but are also attractive to domestic and overseas visitors when the sector re-opens. Developing outdoor infrastructure is a key element of answering the consumer demand for more flexible dining options.”
For further information, please contact your Local Authority.
Note for Editor:
Part One of the Outdoor Dining Enhancement Scheme covers Outdoor Seating and Accessories.
This is open to individual tourism and hospitality businesses where food is sold for consumption on the premises including hotels, attractions, cafes, restaurants and pubs. Local Authorities will administer the Scheme through their internal business perspective and processes. All applicants will be required to comply with planning codes, legislative and other compliance requirements. The Scheme aims to expand on the work done in 2020 by Local Authorities in supporting businesses and will support individual independent hospitality and tourism businesses towards the cost of equipment to provide additional outdoor seating and facilitate these businesses to increase their outdoor dining capacity for the summer of 2021. Applicants can apply for a grant of up to €4,000 (up to 75% of the ex-VAT cost of equipment purchased/installed). Costs for outdoor tables, chairs, umbrellas, electric heaters, screens/windbreaks, plant stands and wooden platforms will be covered under the Scheme. Expenditure must be incurred between 1st April 2020 and 30th September 2021 and the scheme will open for applications on April 12th 2021 through Local Authority websites.
Part Two of the Scheme covers Weatherproofing & Outdoor Dining Infrastructure.
This will support Local Authorities to upgrade and enhance streets and public spaces and implement weather-proofing solutions which will facilitate year-round outdoor dining in urban tourism centres. This element of the Scheme will facilitate medium-large scale, weather-proofed dining areas for a collective of businesses in a single zone/street, similar to those that exist in various European cities. Each Local Authority can apply for €200,000 for up to 2 locations, with additional funding being made available subject to the quality and economic value of the proposals. Permanent robust and design appropriate weatherproofing structures, including parasols, electric heaters, wind breakers/screens and associated enabling works to accommodate these interventions on a long-term basis will be included. Roof structures and awnings will be considered subject to planning requirements being adhered to. Key is that these remedial works will increase the outdoor dining capacity within our cities and towns, whilst also ensuring the safety of diner and pedestrians.
As the National Tourism Development Authority, Fáilte Ireland’s role is to support the long-term sustainable growth in the economic, social, cultural and environmental contribution of tourism to Ireland. Tourism is of critical importance to the national economy and to regional development and employment. Pre-coronavirus, the sector generated revenue of €7.5billion annually and supported 260,000 jobs nationwide while contributing €1.7billion to the Exchequer. We work in partnership with Government, State agencies, Local Authorities, representative groups and industry, to develop tourism across Ireland by creating destination development plans and networks, investing in infrastructure, activities, visitor attractions and festivals. Fáilte Ireland also provides consumer and buyer insights, mentoring, business supports and training programmes and buyer platforms to help tourism businesses innovate and grow. In addition, Fáilte Ireland supports Business Tourism, managing the bidding for and securing of larger conferences, meetings and events to be hosted in Ireland. We are also responsible for domestic holiday marketing across four regional experience brands: Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland’s Ancient East, Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands and Dublin.