Category Archives: Grants

Lord Mayor Cllr McCarthy Launches his Local Election Campaign, 23 March 2024

Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr Kieran McCarthy, Independent, has confirmed his attention to run in the forthcoming local elections on Friday 7 June. He has once again chosen to run in the south east local electoral area of Cork City which includes the Douglas area. The south east area extended from Albert Road through Ballinlough, Ballintemple, Blackrock, Mahon and takes in Douglas Village, Donnybrook, Rochestown and Mount Oval districts. 

First elected in 2009 Cllr McCarthy has won three terms of office in Cork City Hall on an Independent platform. In launching his manifesto this week Cllr McCarthy outlined his vision across five policy areas – developing more recreational and amenity sites, moving Cork to become net zero in Carbon emissions, marketing the City Centre and village renewal, local government reform and financial accountability, and continuing his suite of community and history projects. 

At the launch of his campaign Cllr McCarthy noted his broad range of interests from community development, city planning, culture and history, village renewal environmental issues and regional development. “Over the past fifteen years I have gained much experience in local government and in particular during my year as Lord Mayor. In City Hall, I continue to fight the corner of my constituents . My website and social media sites showcase my work pursued and achieved over the past decade. It also sets out my stall of interests and what an Independent strong voice can offer local government plus a vision for Cork City’s future in working with local communities. Collaboration with local people is very important to me”.

“Over the past fifteen years I have created and curated several community projects including local history programmes in local schools, a youth community talent competition, a youth Make a Model Boat project. I also founded Cork City Musical Society for adults. I also run free historical walking tours regularly across over 25 Cork City suburban sites.  Against the backdrop of very busy Lord Mayor’s schedule I look forward to meeting people again at the doors over the next few weeks, and if anyone would like to help with my campaign in any shape of form, it would be greatly appreciated”, concluded Lord Mayor Cllr McCarthy.

Kieran’s Lord Mayor’s Column, The Echo, 9 December 2023

The Power of Place:

They say that stories have the power to stop, impress, make one question, make one wonder, make one dream, make one remember, make one be disturbed, make one explore and make one forget – a whole series of emotions. In a historic city such as Cork, one could easily say that such emotions run rampant in approaching all aspects of the city’s stories.

Indeed, the more one studies the vast narratives at play in Cork City, the more they pull you in to study them more. The more they pull you in the more one gets under the skin of our historic city, one becomes even more enamoured by the rake of very interesting narratives, which created our beautiful city.

There were two events at which I recently spoke at and launched, which re-connected the relevant areas back to their history.

A Bridge Through History, Vernon Mount Bridge:

There has been much anticipation for and much looking forward to the opening of the pedestrian and cycling Vernon Mount bridge for many years – mainly down to the dedication, ambition and vision of the immediate community in Grange in particular on the northern ridge here.

Indeed, much of the call for a new connecting bridge has also been bound up with the strong sense of pride and place in the area and the need to renew and reconnect the sense of pride and the sense of place up physically and symbolically to nearby neighbourhoods.   

There is now a new bridge now re-connecting the proud neighbourhoods of Grange to the proud neighbourhoods of Ballyphehane and Douglas and Turners Cross. In the past, before the motorway was connected up you could wander across the Tramore Valley river plain across the many historic and informal human pathways.

Indeed, where the bridge is located there are many stories, embedded in the local landscape – the story of Ballyphehane townland, where Tramore Valley Park stands. Baile an Feitheáin stands for the townland of the sharp grass or marshland; the story of the public commons land on this swamp in the eighteenth century; the story of the sailcloth factory, which created Douglas village in the early eighteenth century; the creation of the beautiful Vermon Mount House and estate by the Hayes family; in the mid nineteenth century, the story of the adjacent Cork Union Workhouse; in the late nineteenth century, the advent of the two railway lines Cork Macroom Railway Line and the Cork Bandon Line and how they were built on raised platforms through one side of the swamp.

In the early twentieth century, one has the story of the Irish War of Independence and the volunteer training that went on here and the story of the Civil War executions near here; the stories of recreation of wandering, hunting and courting out here in the twentieth century; to the story of the traveller community; the story of the landfill from the 1970s for over 40 years, the creation of Tramore Valley Park and in our time the Creative Ireland Kinship programme, which explores our connection to the natural environment here through artist and community participation.

Several of the locations around the new Vernon Mount Bridge possess a strong sense of character, sentimentality, place and belonging, symbolic ownership and are a source of inspiration. Cork people deem such sites as being appealing, timeless, ancestral, eternal, enshrined or sacred in conjuring and summoning a sense of place.

A Street Through Time, MacCurtain Street:

Similarly the recent completion of the revamp of McCurtain Street allows us to take back in for the first time in many decades, through widened footpaths in particular, the array histories, heritage and memories and champion MacCurtain Street’s rich sense of place. street is in the history, heritage and memory of the city and how it connects to the overarching sense and power of place.

The historical DNA of this corner of the work of Cork is rooted in the story of an emerging in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries where the city was branding itself as one of the Venices of the North and the Athens of Ireland in terms of cultural output.

When the Corporation of Cork the time invested in planning St Patrick’s Bridge in 1787 it opened up this quarter for development. The 1790s coincided with the creation of St Patrick’s Hill – a hill-up avenue from Bridge Street, which aligned with an old windmill, the foundation of which is now incorporated into Audley House. The decade also coincided with an early MacCurtain Street– back then known as Strand Street and later King Street, named after MP Robert King in Mitchelstown House. The earliest eighteenth buildings can still be seen at the western side of the street.

One by one, some of Cork’s greatest architectural structures were added to the area. Between 1801 and 1832 Summerhill North built as well a new myriad of new residences; in 1855, the Cork Dublin Terminus & tunnel opened – the tunnel in its day one of the major features of engineering in western Europe and part of plethora of railway networks beginning to appear in Western Europe. In 1861, Trinity Presbyterian Church was opened at the foot of Summerhill.

In the 1880s, the former Ogilive and Dobbin Wholesaler buildings were revealed and are now the Greene’s Restaurant and Isaac’s Hotel complex. About the same time, the elaborate twelve-bay five-storey structure building, which hosted Thompson’s Bakery emerged as well as the seven bay three storey Victoria Buildings.  In 1892, the Baptist Church building was opened. In 1897, Dan Lowry opened the building as a luxurious new theatre called The Cork Palace of Varieties.

It was the energy of all those sites that led to the development by the brothers Stuart and Thomas Musgrave of the Metropole Hotel, designed by Arthur Hill in 1897. The prospectus for the hotel in 1897 sold its luxuriousness and embraced the brand of modernity – a modern hotel for a city of modern vitality.

The Coliseum Cinema opened in September 1913. By the time the street name changed in April 1920 from King Street to commemorate the then recently martyred Lord Mayor Tomás MacCurtain, the modern street had emerged with an enormous array of services but also a set of buildings with diverse functions and narratives.

Of course, I haven’t mentioned the people involved in creating these sites and their background and ambition. I haven’t mentioned the architects, the business people, the old families, the old shops, all of which we can gleam from old street directories or even legacies of great musicians like Rory Gallagher immortalised in this historic premises.

MacCurtain Street is full of places of tradition, of continuity, change and legacy, of ambition and determination, experiences and learning, of ingenuity and innovation, places of nostalgia and memories, places that are cherished and remembered with fondness. All such places, Cork needs to mind in its future as well.

Press Release – HSE National Lottery Grant Scheme, 11 February 2023

Cllr Kieran McCarthy is encouraging all local groups operating in the area of health and social care to apply for a grant from the HSE National Lottery Grant Scheme.

Cllr McCarthy noted: “All community groups and voluntary organisations which provide health or social care services to the community are eligible to apply. For example, you might help people with a disability, older people, carers or disadvantaged groups”.

The grant is intended for one-off projects and services that improve the health of communities.

For example, you can apply for funding to:

▶️buy equipment and small fixtures and fittings like hoists, tables, and chairs

▶️run camps, classes, courses, personal development training, information or activity events

▶️organise respite care or a break for carers or the people they are caring for.

You must be able to start and finish your project in the same year you apply for the grant. You can apply for between €300 and €10,000 in funding for each project.

The deadline for all applications is midday on Friday 17 February 2023.

The application form can be found at ➡️…/lottery…/national-lottery-grants/ , along with instructions.

Cllr McCarthy: Funding Open for Care of Archaeological Monuments, 19 December 2022

Independent Cllr Kieran McCarthy calls on owners and custodians of archaeological monuments in the south east of Cork City and city wide to apply for funding for their structures.

 The Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage has advertised the 2023 Community Monuments Fund with €6 million available nationally. The fund will be administered locally by Cork City Council Archaeologist Ciara Brett.

 Cllr McCarthy noted: “Funding is prioritised for the care, conservation, maintenance, protection and promotion of archaeological monuments. In 2022 Cork City Council received €167,000 for 3 projects in Cork City. Conservation works were undertaken at a lime kiln at Blarney Castle Demesne, Waterloo Belfry Tower and at Rathcooney Church, Glanmire. There is an array of archaeological monuments on private land in the south east of the city that need conservation works.

The Community Monuments Fund 2023 has 3 Streams; Stream 1 will offer grants up to €85,000 aimed at essential repairs and capital works for the conservation and repair of archaeological monuments; Stream 2 will offer grants of up to €30,000 for development of Conservation Management Plans/Reports that are aimed at identifying measures for conservation of archaeological monuments and improving public access. Stream 3 will offer grants of up to €30,000 for enhancement of access infrastructure and interpretation (including virtual/online) at archaeological monuments.

The closing date for applications to the Local Authority is 5pm on Friday 27 January 2023. Applications will be assessed by the Local Authority in advance of being submitted to the Department. Please contact Ciara Brett, City Archaeologist, if you wish to discuss a possible project.

McCarthy: Cork City Arts Strategy Open for Public Consultation, 27 November 2021

Independent Cllr Kieran McCarthy is calling upon the community and artistic sector across the city and especially in the south east to engage with the public consultation on the new Cork City Arts Strategy. The Arts Office of Cork City Council are now developing a new strategy to guide their work over the next five years. They want to ensure that arts and culture in Cork City is the very best it can be. To help them with thinking and planning, they would like to understand more about what people think and feel about arts and culture in Cork City now and to gather their hopes and ideas for the future. 

Cllr McCarthy noted: “Cork City Council has consistently invested in and supported the arts. There are many different tools at their disposal for the development of the arts. These include ideas generation, funding support, infrastructural support, resource and staffing support. Planning for the future, assessing the impact of our work to date and consolidating cultural infrastructure are all crucial elements to plan for going forward”.

“On Cork City’s public consultation portal under the survey section (www. is a short survey and gives you the opportunity to share your views and inform what we do in the years ahead. The survey is confidential and contains short questions looking for public input. The survey will remain open until 6 December at 5pm”, concluded Cllr McCarthy.

Cllr McCarthy: Outdoor Seating Grants for Tourism and Hospitality Still Open

Independent Cllr Kieran McCarthy wishes to remind business owners that grants applications are still being received for outdoor seating and accessories for tourism and hospitality businesses in Cork City for 2021.

Cllr McCarthy noted: “Outdoor hospitality was much enjoyed by the public last summer and is playing a key role this year as well in welcoming people back to a vibrant and safe Cork City. A new outdoor seating and accessories grant scheme, supported by Fáilte Ireland  in partnership with local authorities such as Cork City Council, is now open for applications. Grants are available to support businesses in the hospitality and tourism sector in enhancing their outdoor offering”. 

Any restaurant, cafe, bar, hotel, visitor attraction or other hospitality/tourism business where food or drink is sold for consumption on the premises. The scheme is open to existing businesses located throughout Cork City. 

Applicants should have no commercial rates outstanding to Cork City Council, or have a payment plan in place. Applicants must have signed up to the Covid 19 Safety Charter (Apply for the Covid 19 Safety Charter. All applicants are required to comply with planning codes, legislative requirements and other compliance requirements.  Only premises branding is permitted. No fixtures with commercial/product advertising are eligible.

Those businesses availing of public land for outdoor furniture must be in possession of a Street Furniture License for 2021 from Cork City Council before availing of the scheme. Each business can apply for up to €4,000 per premises (exclusive of VAT) towards the above eligible costs, up to a maximum of 75% of the total cost. Applications can be accepted at any time between now and 5pm on Thursday, 30 September 2021. More information can be got from or log onto the Council’s website home page at

Cllr McCarthy: Phase 2 of Small Business Assistance Scheme Now Open, June 2021

Independent Cllr Kieran McCarthy wishes to remind business owners that the expanded Small Business Assistance Scheme (SBAS) for COVID is now open for applications through Cork City Council. Phase two of this scheme has been expanded to include those that had previously been ineligible. Cllr McCarthy noted: “SBASC gives grants to businesses who are not eligible for the Government’s COVID Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS), the Fáilte Ireland Business Continuity grant or other direct sectoral grant schemes. This scheme aims to help businesses with their fixed costs, for example, rent, utility bills, security. If you have received Phase 1 of SBASC you can apply for Phase 2 if you continue to meet the eligibility requirements. The closing date for this scheme is 21 July 2021”.

Businesses working from non-rateable premises are now eligible to apply and if they meet the other eligibility criteria will receive a grant of €4,000. Businesses with a turnover between €20,000 and €49,999 are also now eligible to apply if they meet the other eligibility criteria and will receive a grant of €1,000.

The scheme is available to companies, self-employed, sole traders or partnerships. The business must not be owned and operated by a public body. The business must operate from a building, including working from home, or similar fixed physical structure such as a yard or a street trading pitch for which rates are payable or in a co-working hub or a rented fixed desk. This does not include businesses carried on from motor vehicles, such as PSVs or construction trades. The business must have a current eTax Clearance Certificate from the Revenue Commissioners. Cllr McCarthy concluded: “Further information can be obtained from Cork City Council’s Business Support Unit on the home page of or at the following phone number, 021-4924484 or at the following e-mail address,”

Cllr McCarthy: Rates Deferral is of Huge Benefit to Businesses

Independent Cllr Kieran McCarthy has welcomed the continued deferral of rates payments for the first quarter of 2021 for businesses most impacted by Level 5 restrictions introduced on 6 January 2021.

Cllr McCarthy noted: “With financial support from central government Cork City Council will be deferring rates payments. The three-month waiver will apply to eligible businesses and will be applied to rates accounts in the form of a credit in lieu of rates. Support from government has also kept the Council’s operations going and it is essential that forms of financial support remain as businesses return in the months ahead. The Council’s income will be significantly down later this year as the full economic fallout from businesses that do not re-open is revealed”.

 Cork City Council Head of Finance, John Hallahan said, “Cork City Council is acutely aware of the challenges faced by businesses, large and small throughout the city and county. We will continue to work with our rate payers on a case by case basis and are asking businesses to contact us”. 

Cork City Council will issue Rate Bills for 2021 commencing in March 2021. Rate payers are advised that these bills will not include the recently announced Covid-19 rates waiver but that rate payers that are eligible for the waiver will get a statement showing their reduced liability in April/May 2021. For queries on the rates waiver scheme, contact or phone 021-4924484.

Cork City Local Enterprise Office offers a number of supports to businesses to address the challenges posed by Covid-19, such as mentoring, Microfinance Ireland COVID-19 Business Loan, businessadvice clinics, and trading online vouchers are available for businesses wishing to establish or enhance their online presence. For further queries on these supports, contact Cork City Local Enterprise Office on 021-4961828 or at

Cllr McCarthy: NTA Investments in Marina Area Warmly Welcomed, 15 February 2021

Press Release:

“Last week’s announcements by the National Transport Authority (NTA) are really positive for the Marina area and the Old Railway Line Walk through to Bessboro. Firstly phase 1 of the Greenway has been given funding of e.3.2m to progress construction. It comprises widening of the existing surfaced area along the old railway line path from 3m to 5m, the installation of new public lighting and CCTV, emphasising the heritage of the railway (especially at Blackrock Station) and producing a biodiversity corridor along the railway line. 

Secondly, it is also really great to see funding following the public consultation and its vision for the Marina and the Council’s subsequent vote to pedestrianise the Marina walk full-time.

A total of e.240,000 has received from the NTA to progress preliminary design, planning, design team appointment & detailed design for the Marina Promenade Pedestrian and Cycle facilities project. Many people have complained that is very difficult to walk over certain sections of the Marina’s road plus the need to have a think about public lighting after dark and the counter balance of that with protection of natural habitats around the Atlantic Pond and eastwards. The project will also seek funding for some repairs to the quay wall and some general improvement to the public realm including seating, bike parking etc.

In March/ April this year, the Infrastructure Development Directorate of Cork City Council will be publishing a notice seeking tenders from suitably qualified and experienced Design Consultants for the upgrade and enhancement of the Marina (Centre Park Road to Blackrock Village).

By the end of 2021 City Hall officials aim to present a recommended layout to Council members with construction to follow in early 2022 subject to the necessary consents and funding approval.

Great credit is due to officials in City Hall of the Infrastructure section; there is great momentum at the moment between drafting plans, gaining the input of the public, amending plans where needs be, and presenting them to the National Transport Authority for funding”.  

The Marina, Cork (picture: Cllr Kieran McCarthy)
The Marina, Cork (picture: Cllr Kieran McCarthy)

Open call for Cllr McCarthy’s Community Ward Funds 2021

Cllr Kieran McCarthy is calling on any community groups based in the south east ward of Cork City, which includes areas such as Blackrock, Mahon, Ballinlough, Ballintemple, Douglas, Donnybrook, Maryborough, Rochestown, Mount Oval and Moneygourney with an interest in sharing in his 2021 ward funding to apply for his funds.

A total of e.11,000 is available to community groups through Cllr Kieran McCarthy’s Cork City Council ward funds. Due to the annual take-up of the ward funds, in general grants can vary from e.100 to e.300 to groups. Application should be made via letter (Richmond Villa, Douglas Road) or email to Kieran at by Friday 5 February 2021. This email should give the name of the organisation, contact name, contact address, contact email, contact telephone number, details of the organisation, and what will the ward grant will be used for.

Ward funds will be prioritised to community groups based in the south east ward or the south east local electoral area of Cork City who build community capacity, educate, build civic awareness and projects, which connect the young and old. Cllr McCarthy especially welcomes proposals where the funding will be used to run a community event (as per Covid guidelines), digital included, and that benefit the wider community. In addition, he is seeking to fund projects that give people new skill sets. That could include anything from part funding of coaching training for sports projects to groups interested in bringing forward enterprise programmes to encourage entrepreneurship to the ward.

Cllr McCarthy is also particularly interested in funding community projects such as community environment projects such as tree planting and projects that that promote the rich history and environment within the south east of Cork City.