Fáilte Ireland and Limerick City and County Council Regional Festivals and Participative Events Fund 2019

A new funding arrangement has been put in place between Fáilte Ireland and Local Authorities to drive the implementation of tourism focused festivals and participative events. This new funding arrangement will replace Fáilte Ireland’s existing annual Regional Festivals and Participative Events Programme.
Closing date for applications is 4pm Tuesday 20th August 2019.

This funding arrangement has been developed in the context of an enhanced role for Local Authorities in tourism as set out in the Governments 2015 tourism policy People, Places and Policy, Growing Tourism to 2025. This commitment to a strengthened role has been further reflected more recently in realising our Rural Potential: Action Plan for rural Development 2017, which identified the need for Fáilte Ireland to ‘provide practical support to Local Authorities in the development of comprehensive tourism strategies and support collaborative approaches at Local Authority and community levels’. In addition, the Action Plan identified an action focused on the development of festivals and a review of current arrangements for regional and community festivals.

The fund and its objective?

This funding is aimed at supporting festivals and participative events which drive domestic tourism and help to improve the visitor experience by animating destinations in Ireland. Under this programme €24,000 was allocated by Fáilte Ireland to support festivals and participative events in Limerick to achieve these aims. Typical grant awards are €1,500-€5,000. Grants awarded in 2019 will be subject to available funding and the number of applications received.

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Grant Scheme Criteria

The Regional Festival and Participative Events Programme 2019 is aimed at festivals and participative events that fit into one of the following categories:

  • General festivals (i.e. literary, historic, traditional culture or family focused)
  • Arts, Music & Theatre
  • Food & Drink
  • Sports & Outdoors
  • Business & Education

The following categories of festival and participative events are ineligible for this programme, due to their limited tourist appeal:

  • Purely commercial events with limited tourism appeal
  • Agricultural shows and countryside fairs with limited tourism appeal
  • Spectator-based sporting events
  • Circuses and carnivals
  • Christmas fairs and markets

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Qualifying Conditions & Minimum Eligibility Thresholds for 2019

To be considered for funding, applicants need to demonstrate the following:

  • The festivals must generate a minimum of 100 bed nights in paid accommodation from visitors or tourists attending the event.
  • Participative events must generate a minimum of 800 bednights in paid accommodation from visitors or tourists attending the event.
  • In the absence of valid accommodation surveys or audience surveys, the tourism impact may be estimated in so far a valid rationale is given to justify the projected figures.
  • The festival/event must have a minimum expenditure of €10,000.

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Who Can Apply?

Groups, companies and individuals who have a business address and a current Tax Clearance Access Number in the Republic of Ireland. Only those applications that meet the programme’s minimum eligibility criteria will be assessed for funding. It is important to note that applications will be evaluated on a competitive basis - there is no guarantee of grant assistance even if the qualifying conditions are met.

Festivals and Participative events that take place between 1st Jan 2019 and the 31st of Dec 2019. If your event has already taken place during this time period you can apply for this funding as retrospective funding.

Funding will only be provided to festivals and events that focus on marketing and promoting Limerick and that have a city and county-wide impact. This is not an emergency fund for existing projects that may have lost other sources of funding.

The Tourism Development Strategy sets out a new vision for tourism development in Limerick. One of the key themes in the Strategy is 'Alive and Kicking'. The Council recognises the importance of festivals and events in attracting visitors but also providing entertainment for the people of Limerick. This Regional Festivals & Participative Events grant funding will support the objectives on this strategy.

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What costs you can apply for?

The following costs are eligible expenses and may be funded under the programme:

  • Marketing Activity: The cost of marketing activities with a regional and national reach. This may include advertising, public relations, digital marketing and similar activities. Eligible costs may also include the cost of site-branding the location during the event. Local marketing is not eligible.
  • Programming of Events/Activities associated with the Festival/Participative Event: Expenditure incurred on elements which has not received grant aid from other public bodies (e.g. Arts Council) and is considered to deliver significant benefits to tourism.
  • Development Activities: For example feasibility studies, training and branding consultancy activities may be covered once it is clearly of long-term benefit and or/raises the festival or participative event’s profile. If a grantee intends claiming for Development Activity it must be agreed in advance and noted in the Letter of Offer.

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Ineligible Costs

  • Proposals from commercial organisations that share out profits to members.
  • Persons in full time undergraduate and postgraduate level study during the period of the delivery of the festival/event.
  • Activities that have been or are being grant-aided by other sources of funding.
  • Charity fundraisers.
  • Festivals/ Participative Events with the sole purpose of celebrating a religious or political event/commemoration.
  • Festivals/ Participative Events intended to take place outside of Limerick City and County.
  • Day to day operational costs and overheads: specifically, salaries, rent, non-festival related phone, supplies, postage, photocopying and food for staff.
  • Proposals in which programmes are primarily focused on the delivery of workshop series, summer schools, on-going classes, or instances where the sole purpose of the event is the delivery of a competitive process etc.
  • Capital Costs - for example:
    1. The cost of items for resale e.g. merchandise, except where it can be demonstrated that they will deliver significant benefits and where they have been expressly allowed in the Letter of Offer and Memorandum of Understanding.
    2. Building expenses including purchase, works and maintenance.
    3.Purchase of equipment which is not solely for the purpose of producing and delivering the Festival/Event.
  • Travel and related costs incurred by or on behalf of the event delivery teams/organisers unless expressly approved in writing in advance by Limerick City and County Council
  • Activities that duplicate what Limerick City and County Council is currently delivering in tourism, culture, arts and heritage field.
  • The cost of any research which, has not been approved in advance by Limerick City and County Council.
  • Any activities not specified in a Memorandum of Understanding.
  • Activities which do not relate directly to the Festival/ Participative Event or which do not have clearly identifiable benefits for tourism and or social, cultural and economic benefit to Limerick.
  • Unpaid expenditure or loans
  • Cash expenditure
  • Recoverable VAT
  • In-kind contributions
  • Expenditure paid for by a person other than the Grantee, unless and to the extent that such expenditure has been reimbursed by the Grantee.
  • Fines, penalty payments, legal costs, audit fees, financial consultancy fees, Trade association membership fee or equivalent.

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How to Apply

  1. Limerick City and County Council will advertise the scheme. We aim to complete the application process which within 6 weeks of being advertised. This process will ensure that all applications for the coming year are evaluated together on a competitive basis and not in isolation.
  2. Application forms will be provided and must be completed by all applicants. Incomplete application forms will be deemed ineligible and will not be assessed. Non-completion of financial questions or N/A answers to questions will also deem an application ineligible.
  3. Following submission of completed application forms, Regional Festival and Participative Events Programme assessment group will meet to assess projects and recommendations for funding.

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What Must Successful Applicants Do Well?

Successful applicants must be able to demonstrate the following:

  • Help to build memorable visitor experiences in the locality, by adding vibrancy and colour to the area.
  • The proposed festival/ participative event programme will be comprehensive and professionally designed and motivating for the visitor.
  • A clear business plan has been prepared to include a full income and expenditure budget for the event, and a comprehensive marketing and promotions plan.
  • Where possible use digital technology to widen reach and impact.
  • The profile of the organisers is appropriate to manage the calibre of the proposed event.
  • Festivals/ participative events awarded funding must notify both the Limerick Fáilte Ireland Tourist Information Offices and Limerick Marketing & Communications Department in advance about the event so that information can be shared with visitors.
  • In view of the central role of Limerick City and County Council in supporting local economic and cultural development, proposals for funding should relate only to projects which will support local economic development, i.e. attracting or generating additional events, investment, spending or jobs in Limerick.
  • The full extent of co-funding or matching funds either sought or obtained from other sources must be disclosed. Events in receipt of, or in line for, other public funding which will make up more than 50% of their total budget will be ineligible for consideration under this scheme.
  • Funding will only be provided post event completion and upon receipt of an event report and appropriate invoices/receipts. The submission of a post event evaluation report will measure the economic impact/benefit of the activity or event to Limerick, demonstrating that funding criteria and conditions have been met, that the event adhered to the business plan and that all marketing, communications and branding requirements were fulfilled.

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Submission of Applications

Applications will be accepted by post or email.

Please return form and applicable documentation to:
Tourism Department
Limerick City and County Council
Merchant's Quay
Please mark postal applications 'Regional Festivals and Participative Events'

Email: tourism@limerick.ie
When e-mailing please include the following reference in the subject line: 'Regional Festivals and Participative Events'.

Closing date for applications is 4pm Tuesday 20th August 2019.

For more information, terms and conditions, pre-qualifying questionnaire, FOI and Privacy Statement please see Application Guidelines in the supporting documents below.

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