A former bakery, a vacant garda station and a disused schoolhouse are among 24 derelict and vacant sites nationwide that will be given a new lease of life thanks to a €4.5 million funding boost.

The investment under the Town and Village Renewal Scheme’s Building Acquisition Measure aims to tackle the issue of dereliction and vacancy in rural towns and villages.

The 24 old and derelict buildings chosen as part of the scheme will be purchased and repurposed into new, modern facilities to benefit the local communities.

Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys

Announcing the details today, Minister Humphreys said: “This initiative is all about giving our local communities the tools to address the challenges of vacancy and dereliction in their towns and villages.

“Through this funding, we are taking those rundown buildings and turning them into facilities that will benefit communities for generations to come.

“By doing so, we will help to drive footfall into our town centres, increase tourism and, above all, make our rural towns and villages even better places to live, work, invest, visit and raise a family.”

– A former garda station in Bellacorick, Co Mayo that will be redeveloped into a multipurpose community hub, community gym and remote working hub. Photo: Google Street View

Among the 24 projects to be funded are:

  • Ballyroan, Co Laois: A former national school to be used as a multipurpose community venue
  • Bellacorick, Co Mayo: A former garda barracks for use as a multipurpose community hub, community gym and remote working hub
  • St Margaret’s, Fingal: A former Parochial Hall, Parochial House and Coach House to be converted into multipurpose community space
  • Villierstown, Co. Waterford: A site with derelict buildings – to regenerate the derelict buildings into a modern permanent structure including a boathouse, camping site, additional parking facilities, multipurpose community space
  • Belturbet, Co Cavan: A former bakery for conversion into a multipurpose community facility
  • Leitrim Village, Co Leitrim:​Purchase of a two-storey semi-detached house to create a Blueway Hub
  • Tipperary Town, Co Tipperary: Redevelopment of a three-storey former public house and fast foot outlet to convert into a multi-purpose community space.

The full list of successful projects is available to view here