Workshops to help businesses

Councillor Margaret Tolerton, Chairman of Lagan Rural Partnership Local Action Group is pictured at Blackstone Physiotheraphy Clinic with Kay McLorn.
Councillor Margaret Tolerton, Chairman of Lagan Rural Partnership Local Action Group is pictured at Blackstone Physiotheraphy Clinic with Kay McLorn.

Lagan Rural Partnership Local Action Group is to hold a series of funding workshops for a £1.3 million Rural Business Investment Grant Scheme.

The workshops will help new and existing businesses to explore new funding opportunities available under the Rural Business Investment Grant Scheme as part of the NI Rural Development Programme 2014 - 2020.

Lagan Rural Partnership is a body consisting of local elected representatives and social partners from the rural business and community sector tasked with delivery of the new programme in the rural areas of Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council and Belfast City Council.

Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council has built on its strong track record of investment in the local rural economy by assisting Lagan Rural Partnership to deliver an overall £3.2m rural grant scheme package of which £1.3 million will be dedicated to support the creation of new rural businesses and the expansion of existing rural businesses.

The new grant scheme will build on previous programme investment of £8.7 million between 2009 and 2015 which supported 151 projects across a number of measures focused on improving business potential and social impact.

This significant sum of money created 28 new rural businesses, helped expand 45 existing businesses and supported 117 new rural jobs.

Blackstone Physiotherapy Clinic in Moira was one of the successful applicants to the grants scheme as part of the previous programme and was recently visited by Councillor Margaret Tolerton, Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council, and Chairman of Lagan Rural Partnership.

Councillor Tolerton said: “I am delighted that Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council will be taking the lead in the delivery of this new programme on behalf of Lagan Rural Partnership;

“And I am excited about the potential for the scheme to make a positive impact on our local rural economy.”

Kay McLorn Owner of Blackstone Physiotherapy added that “The assistance from the programme was invaluable in driving my business forward and has led to increased employment and new opportunities.”

The workshops will be held on March 10 at Hillsborough Village Centre, from 7.30pm – 9.30pm; March 16 at the Chestnut Suite, Island Civic Centre, (Business Breakfast) from 8am – 10am: March 22 at St. Clare’s Community Hall, Glenavy from 7pm – 9pm.