18th October

Funding to support maritime projects in the southeast

Coastal communities in the southeast of Ireland are to receive €1.68m for projects that add value to seafood products and support maritime activities. The South East FLAG (Fisheries Local Action Group) is one of seven nationwide groups co-funded under the European Maritime Fisheries Fund and administered by BIM.

Flag Southeast 2017

Over 1,200 people are employed in the marine/seafood sector of Waterford, Wexford and Wicklow. Fish landings in Dunmore East and Kilmore Quay - two of the top five ports in Ireland - exceed 10,000 tonnes annually. Other harbours include Wicklow, Arklow, Wexford town and Rosslare Harbour. 

Liam Griffin, chairman of the South East Action Plan for Jobs Tourism Group, said the funding provided a great opportunity for the South East FLAG chaired by Noel McDonagh: 

"The members are dedicated leaders in the marine, tourism and business sectors. The tailored strategy they have produced is built on consultation and input from coastal community stakeholders. "

Michael Keatinge, interim chief executive for BIM, explained that the FLAG programme was designed to empower local communities to develop their own strategies that leverage and maximise marine opportunities in their area:

"The South East region has a strong maritime industry and heritage. This new strategy will provide a funding mechanism to develop this industry and associated community projects."

During the 2012-2015 programme, more than 180 projects were awarded grants of almost €1m targeting job creation, social inclusion, tourism, regeneration and market development. The National Programme will deliver €12m in funding by 2020.

Deadline to apply for funding is 5pm, March 15. Contact John Hickey, South East FLAG facilitator on 053 912 9632.

Members of the South East FLAG:

• Noel McDonagh, Chair South East FLAG, Dunmore East Fishermen’s Co-op, East Waterford Lobster Association

• Eugene Bates, South East Regional Inshore Fisheries Forum & Rosslare Razor Association

• Aidan Scallan, South East Regional Inshore Fisheries Forum & South Wexford Lobster Co-op Committee, full time fisherman, Kilmore Quay

• Risteard Breathnach, Cumann Sliogeisc Helvick, full time fisherman Helvick

• Cliona Mhic Giolla Chuda, Irish Shellfish Association (Oysters)

• Lee Ronan, Duncannon Fish Company (Ronan’s Fish shop based in Wexford Street, New Ross)

• Walter Foley, Irish Charter Skippers Association, charter boat operator from Waterford harbour

• Ann Wall, Public Participation Network, Wexford (Hook Rural Tourism)

• Donal O’Brian, Public Participation Network, Waterford • Niall O'Connor, Public Participation Network, Co. Wicklow

• Ray McGrath, Environmental Pillar/Irish Environmental Network

• Carolyne Godkin, County Development Officer Economic Section, Wexford County Council

• Tom Greegan, Chair, Wicklow Leader Partnership

• Mary Walsh, Adult Education Officer, Waterford/Wexford ETB

• Eleanor Kent, Lecturer, Programme leader for the Bsc in Food Science with Business and Bsc (Hons) in Food Science and Innovation, Waterford Institute of Technology

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