The Capital Works Fund of €500,000 is available for angling groups and clubs who are looking to improve access and infrastructure for angling.
The fund is aimed specifically at capital improvement works, with grants available to all groups and individuals including local development associations, tidy towns, angling clubs and others looking to improve access to angling.
The types of projects eligible for funding must provide for public access and include the following:
- Clearing and fencing along rivers/ lakes to allow access for angling.
- Disability-friendly angling stands.
- Car parks to improve access for anglers (new car parks and upgrades to existing carparks).
- Walkways to improve access for anglers.
- Stands, styles, footbridges and boat slips.
- Accessible angling boats.
Sean Kyne TD, Minister of State with responsibility for the inland fisheries sector, said: “Accessibility for people of all abilities is a priority if our inland fisheries are to be enjoyed by everyone.
“I welcome the investment which will open angling activity to a wider range of participants and I would encourage the community based groups to apply for funding.”
The funding scheme forms part of IFI’s National Strategy for Angling Development which aims to ensure that Ireland’s fish stocks and angling infrastructure are protected and enhanced for the economic value and recreational benefit which they offer to communities across Ireland.
The fisheries resource is worth €836 million to the Irish economy annually and supports upwards of 11,000 jobs, often in rural and peripheral communities.
IFI head of business development Suzanne Campion added: “We are now inviting applications for funding for ‘shovel-ready’ projects which will improve access to angling.
“This is a vital step in developing facilities for the 273,600 anglers currently in Ireland and the 163,000 international visitors who fished here in 2015. By improving access, we can help grow domestic participation in angling and encourage more visitors to our country every year.”
Campion said the National Strategy for Angling Development “aims to grow the annual economic contribution of angling by €96 million over the next five years, creating an additional 1,800 jobs and attracting 40,000 more tourists annually.
“We are calling on angling development groups to apply for funding through this scheme. Together, we can ensure our angling infrastructure is developed and we can help remove any barriers to participating in this valuable activity.”
Applications for funding should be submitted via the online application form.
Applications will be evaluated in light of the objectives of IFI’s National Strategy for Angling Development, which aims to make angling accessible and attractive through information, infrastructure and support, to develop tourism through the promotion of angling and to establish recognition of angling as an important leisure and recreational pursuit. The closing date for applications is Tuesday 8 November.
IFI said it expects to continue funding in this area in 2017, and invites expressions of interest (open till the end of November 2016) from those wishing to develop more complex projects to deliver on the National Strategy for Angling Development.