Three local businesses have received a combined grant award of more than £180,000 through the NI Rural Development Programme 2014-2020 which is funded by the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs and the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development. The funding will help the businesses to grow their existing operations and boost job creation in the local economy.
Letters of Offer were presented to the 3 successful businesses at the Londonderry and Limavady Agricultural Show on 30th July 2016 by the Minister of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs, Michelle McIllveen, and the Chairman of the Causeway Coast and Glens Local Action Group, Patsy Bradley. Garvagh based firms Farlow Engineering Ltd and Currie Engineering Ltd, received offers of £90,000 for capital expenditure projects, along with Ballymoney based Agquip LTD who received an offer of £6,005 to help fund a new digital marketing project for the firm.
Speaking about the funding award John Currie, Director, Currie Engineering Ltd said, “Obtaining this Letter of Offer is a fantastic boost for our company and we would like to outline our appreciation to the LAG for their help and support throughout this process. Financial support for businesses can often be difficult to obtain, so to have funding of this scale available for small, local businesses in rural communities is hugely encouraging and I am delighted ourselves and others can avail from it.”
Alan Farlow, Director, Farlow Engineering Ltd, said “I am very happy to have received a Letter of Offer from the LAG Board. The investment will allow us to proceed with the construction of new facilities which will give us the operational capacity to design and build more bespoke type trailers. I’d like to also state how helpful the Rural Development Programme team have been in getting us through this Programme successfully and quickly, and for seeing a potential in our project to deliver sales.”
Chairman of the Causeway Coast and Glens Local Action Group, Patsy Bradley, added, “As Chair of the LAG, I am very pleased that we have been able to start getting the first Letters of Offer out to projects under our first call for applications to the Rural Business Investment Scheme. Between the 3 businesses, there will be 10 new jobs created in the rural area and an opportunity for expansion for all three businesses. Each business is receiving funding for specific projects to meet their needs, for example, by purchasing new equipment, the construction of new facilities and the marketing and promotion of their product. We look forward to issuing more Letters of Offer in the near future and to realise the benefits of the Rural Development Programme funding in the Causeway Coast and Glens area.”
The news was also welcomed by Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Alderman Maura Hickey, who commented “I would like to congratulate the Causeway Coast and Glens Local Action Group (LAG) on leading the way and being the first LAG to issue Letters of Offer under the new Rural Development Programme. It is great to see local rural businesses being supported through these grants which have a wonderful potential to make a difference to the local economy here in the Borough.”
To find out more information about the Northern Ireland Rural Development Programme visit https://www.causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk/work/rural-development or call 028 7034 7034.