Plans to promote Clare as a County of Culture during 2016 have taken a significant step forward with the issuing of a call for expressions of interest for key cultural events and festivals during the year.
The County of Culture initiative was first announced in March after Ennis was designated as the host town for next year’s Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann.
The Clare County Council-led initiative will incorporate the development of a programme of cultural events, to be promoted nationally and internationally, around the prestigious annual event which is expected to attract up to 400,000 people to Ennis in August 2016.
The council is now calling on community groups and individuals throughout Clare to submit expressions of interest for cultural festivals and events that will form part of the County of Culture programme. The local authority anticipates that the scheme will support a minimum of four projects each to a maximum value of €10,000. Expressions of interest are invited from new or existing festivals and events which celebrate the culture of Clare and will leave a lasting legacy, while at the same time demonstrate a capacity to attract domestic and overseas tourists.
“Clare is already home to more than 150 festivals and cultural events each year, many of which celebrate the County’s lengthy and celebrated association with Irish traditional music in places like Doolin, Feakle, Ennis and Miltown Malbay. This call for expressions of interest is targeted at growing existing and developing new events that celebrate this County’s rich cultural legacy and promoting Clare as a county of culture to a national and international audience,” John Crowe, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council.
Tom Coughlan, chief executive of Clare County Council said the people of Clare have “a central role to play in the creation of an ambitious programme that promotes the outstanding cultural attributes of the county.”
Guidelines on the content of applications to the scheme are available to view on www.clarecoco.ie.