Minister of State for Tourism & Sport Michael Ring has announced almost €26 million in new funding for local sports projects across the country, the first round of sports capital funding in four years.
Speaking at the announcement Minister Ring, said: ‘I am excited about the allocations being made today. These allocations will benefit people in every county by giving them more opportunities to get involved in sport, whatever their ability. This funding will allow a diverse array of sports clubs and groups to build and improve much-needed facilities, or to purchase sports equipment’.
The 2012 round of the Sports Capital Programme is the first round of the programme since 2008. New criteria were introduced for this year’s programme with a particular emphasis on clubs in disadvantaged areas.
Between 1998 and 2010, €140 per person was provided in sports capital funding across the country. However, the allocations to individual counties varied significantly. While the best performing county got €196 of sports funding on a per capita basis, other counties got only a little over half of that. Therefore on this occasion funding has been allocated on a per-capita basis to each county with a weighting for past performance.
A total of 2,170 applications were received, the highest number of applications ever received under the Programme. These applications sought a total of €229 million in funding. Further allocations of €4 million will be made to national and regional projects in the coming weeks.