Rural Small Grants Scheme now open for applications

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council is welcoming applications for Rural Business Grants of up to almost £5,000.

Friday, 9th July 2021, 9:00 am

The scheme has proved very popular across Northern Ireland with many positive outcomes for the rural micro business sector both locally and province-wide.

The scheme is open for applications between July 1, 2021, and July 30, 2021, with grant aid of between £500 - £4,999 available for projects costing up to £20,000.

Capital grants up to a maximum of 50 per cent grant rate is available to existing micro enterprises based in a rural area to support them to recover, sustain or grow through DAERA’s Tackling Rural Poverty and Social Isolation (TRPSI) Programme.

The focus this year is on supporting those businesses who have not availed of the funding from the scheme in the past two years.

The Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Councillor William McCaughey, said: “With almost two thousand rural businesses across the Borough, we have a significant rural community to help protect and develop.

“These grants have been extremely welcomed in the past with 37 businesses successful in their application last year with a total of £117,466 of funding offered to businesses under this tranche to complete a diverse range of projects.

“This is the third scheme that has been made available to rural businesses and I am encouraging people to apply.”

Jane Magee, Director of Glenview Farm Equine Learning Centre, was successful in securing funding last year.

She said: “We operate a social enterprise, offering a range of services to the public such as pony parties, pony play dates, beginner children and adult riding lessons, therapeutic riding and equine assisted learning.

“Through the rural support grant scheme I was able to purchase an Ifor Williams Trailer, to use in the day to day running of the business.

“The grant scheme is a great way to help local businesses across Mid and East Antrim develop and grow and I would encourage everyone who is eligible to take this opportunity to apply.”

Businesses can apply for financial help on a number of items such as computer equipment and software, E-commerce website, new equipment/ machinery and Covid-19 business recovery equipment.

Information on eligibility criteria and how to apply is available by visiting Mid & East Antrim Council’s website at https://www.midandeastantrim.gov.uk/resident/grants

To register for the online information workshop telephone 028 25633266 or email [email protected]

Fully completed application forms with supporting documents must be submitted by 12noon on Friday, July 30, via email to: [email protected]