Malcolm Noonan TD, Minister of State for Nature, Heritage and Electoral Reform at the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, on 2nd November 2023, launched the Built Heritage Investment Scheme (BHIS) and the Historic Structures Fund (HSF) for 2024.
Funding Available for Conservation of Heritage Buildings
The total funding of €9 million across the two schemes is expected to support repair and maintenance of over 550 historic structures across the country in 2024. These will range from small-scale, labour-intensive projects in individual homes, up to larger-scale projects in major public buildings. This funding will help owners and custodians of our built heritage to undertake the repair and rejuvenation of these historic buildings, presenting them to their best effect today and safeguarding them into the future.
Announcing the 2024 schemes earlier today, Minister Noonan said:
“I strongly believe in the importance of supporting communities to protect and conserve our shared built heritage and recognise that this relies on the dedication of many different parties, including owners and custodians, skilled craftspeople, and local authority experts. As Minister, I have had the pleasure of visiting numerous properties around the country that have received assistance under these two grant schemes and seen first-hand the positive impacts that this work has on the character of a place, the communities that live there and local employment. I would encourage anyone considering applying to get in touch with the Architectural Conservation Officer or Heritage Officer within their local authority as soon as possible.”
Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council, Cllr Gerard Mullaney, welcomed the announcement saying:
“In addition to supporting owners of historic buildings in looking after their properties, this funding will also provide a welcome boost to local construction and heritage trades keeping traditional building skills alive and creating employment for skilled conservation workers. Sligo County Council is delighted to participate in the Built Heritage Investment Scheme and the Historic Structures Fund, providing a link between the Department and owners on the ground and getting this funding out to the local communities and the owners of heritage buildings”.
Cllr. Donal Gilroy, Chair of Sligo Heritage Forum added:
“Our built heritage is a tangible expression of our history and culture, and a distinctive and attractive element of our towns, villages, cities, and countryside. The conservation grant schemes are a vital support to communities, owners, and custodians who maintain our historic structures, so they remain a public good for generations to come.”
Overview and key points on each of the grant schemes:
Built Heritage Investment Scheme
- The 2024 Built Heritage Investment Schemewill provide grants of up to €15,000 to individual owners for small-scale works to repair and preserve their historic properties.
- BHIS includes ring-fenced funding of €500,000 for thatched buildings. This will fund conservation repairs to historic thatched structures, helping owners to offset other costs and protecting these cherished buildings into the future.
Historic Structures Fund
- The 2024 Historic Structures Fund will offer up to €200,000 for projects that deliver a major community benefit.
- It also offers funding for vernacular structures and for historic shopfronts. The Historic Shopfront Stream provides funding for the refurbishment and conservation historic shop facades to safeguard these distinctive features of our towns, villages, and cities.
- The Vernacular Stream provides funding for conservation repairs and small capital works to vernacular structures that are not listed in the local authority Record of Protected Structures.
Administered in conjunction with Local Authority Architectural Conservation Officers, Heritage Officers and Planning and Administrative staff, both grant schemes will assist hundreds of small-scale, labour-intensive projects as well as larger-scale projects to repair and conserve our historic built environment. The projects will also give significant support to local jobs in conservation, traditional skills and construction, providing a vital boost to local economies during challenging times.
All grant applications must be accompanied by a comprehensive method statement prepared by a conservation professional. The closing date for applications under both grant schemes is 4pm Friday 26th January 2024.
Full details and application forms for the 2024 grant schemes are available at www.sligococo.ie/grants.
For further information or queries, please contact: Heritage Office, Sligo County Council on: Tel 071 911 4446 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org