Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice has welcomed the funding announcement made by the Heritage Council today, with more than 180 projects set to share in excess of €1.5 million.

Approximately €1.2 million has been allocated to community groups and not-for-profit-organisations, while circa €375,000 was awarded to community heritage projects.

Reacting to today’s announcement, Fitzmaurice said: “This allocation of funding is a welcome boost to many community groups around the country.

“In my own local area, Glinsk Community Development Society received €5,000 to carry out a conservation report for Ballinakill Abbey.

“Over the last 10 years or so the state of the abbey has deteriorated and this funding will hopefully set the wheels in motion to potentially restore it in the future.

“The abbey is of significant historical importance and it would be a shame to let it go to rack and ruin.

“A number of other projects across Galway and Roscommon also received funding, including Dunmore Heritage Group who received €6,848 to highlight the history and development of the town.

“Meanwhile, in Roscommon, the Irish Heritage Trust were awarded just shy of €4,000 for the ‘Treasures of the Strokestown Famine Archive Virtual Exhibit’ at Strokestown Park.

“This funding will go a long way towards supporting community heritage right around the country,” he concluded.

For further information contact Michael Fitzmaurice at 086-1914565

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