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The new Rural Development Programme for Northern Ireland will run from 2014 – 2020. The Programme was formally approved by the European Commission on 25th August 2015.


The European Union has six outlined priorities for rural development, which are:

1.    Knowledge transfer and innovation in agriculture, forestry and rural areas
2.    Farm competitiveness and risk management
3.    Food chain organisation
4.    Restoring and enhancing ecosystems
5.    Promoting resource efficiency
6.    Social inclusion, poverty reduction and rural economic development

The Northern Ireland Rural Development programme aims to assist projects which fall under Priority number 6, and has a budget of up to £623 million, which was agreed with the European Union and the Northern Ireland Executive.


Causeway Coast and Glens Local Action Group

Each of the 11 Northern Ireland Council areas has been designated funding pots to deliver Priority 6 projects in their area. This process is managed by a Local Action Groups (LAGs) in each council area.

The Causeway Coast and Glens Local Action Group (LAG) has a wider membership of 280 members and a Board of 18 members – 10 Social Partners and 8 Elected Partners. The Causeway Coast and Glens LAG has been allocated £9.6 million budget which will be available to project applicable Priority 6 projects.


Funding Schemes

The Rural Development Programme aims to disperse funding through six different schemes, they are:

Rural Business Investment Scheme
Rural Basic Services Scheme
Village Renewal Scheme
Rural Broadband Scheme
Leadership Cooperation Scheme
Rural Tourism Scheme

More Information about these schemes is in our Schemes section. The schemes will allow for a variety of projects to be funded, and it is around these schemes that the Causeway Coast and Glens LAG has developed its strategic aim.


LAG Strategy

The Strategic Aim of the Causeway Coast and Glens Local Action Group, through the implementation of Priority 6 of the Rural Development Programme, is:

“To improve the quality and sustainability of local social and economic life and create a high-quality experience for all rural residents in the Borough”.

The Interim Local Rural Development Strategy will assist the Causeway Coast and Glens Local Action Group in the management of their funding allocation under Priority 6 of the Rural Development Programme 2014-2020 for the Causeway Coast and Glens Borough.

Throughout the development of the Interim Strategy, the Local Action Group used the LEADER bottom-up approach to consult and ensure that the needs identified and the subsequent actions meet the needs of the rural community in the Borough.

Strategic Objectives

Rural Business Investment Scheme

  • 91 jobs created (FTE)
  • 39 businesses supported
  • 4 people completing bespoke training
  • 65 beneficiaries/people receiving capital grants for their business 
  • 3 businesses supported to introduce/expand e-business
  • 3 businesses who have started to export as a result of the grant

Basic Services Scheme

  • 1,300 people benefitting from improved services / infrastructure
  • 13 projects supported for investment in local basic services for the rural population
Rural Village Renewal Scheme
  • 650 people benefitting from village renewal projects
  • 13 villages supported to draw up or enhance village development plans
  • 7 projects supported for investments in village development
  • 7 derelict / vacant properties brought back into use
Broadband Scheme
  •  1 operation for investment in broadband infrastructure and access to broadband, including e-government services
  • 10 people benefitting from new or improved IT infrastructures (eg broadband internet)
Co-operation Scheme
  •  7% of the budget will be allocated to Co-operation projects
  •  At least 2 Co-operation projects to be developed