Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr Frank O’Flynn Welcomes Investment of Over €500,000 for Architectural Heritage Projects

North Mallow Castle

An investment of €524,138.72 has been announced for Cork County under the Built Heritage Investment Scheme (BHIS) and Historic Structures Fund (HSF), two heritage funding schemes run by the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, in association with the country’s 31 Local Authorities.

Under the BHIS for Cork County, 16 projects will benefit from funding to the sum of €162,138.72 with €38,948 specifically for conservation works in respect of three thatched buildings, located in Charleville, Mitchelstown and Ballymacoda. The balance of €123,190.72 will support conservation works in respect of 13 buildings, which are Myrtle Grove, Youghal; Glenville Park, Glenville; St Patricks Church, Fermoy; Thatched Cottage, Ballindangan Crossroads; Saint George’s Arts & Heritage Centre, Mitchelstown; The Sisters of Mercy Convent, Rosscarbery; Creagh Castle House and St Mary’s Church, Doneraile; Midleton College, Midleton; No. 10 Emmet Square, Clonakilty; Athnowen Church, Ovens; St. Colmans Cathedral, Cloyne; Annes Grove Gatelodge, Castletownroche.

Six projects from Cork County in Midleton, Cobh, Kinsale, Mourneabbey and Mallow will benefit from the Historic Structures Fund (HSF). By providing grants of between €15,000 and €200,000, the HSF assists owners of heritage structures, including those on the local authorities’ ‘Record of Protected Structures’ and those in Architectural Conservation Areas, to meet their obligations to care for their properties. The scheme provides assistance to a wide range of heritage structures, including castles, churches, mills, bridges, shopfronts, and thatch structures, as well as to private houses. Sirius Arts Centre was awarded €100,000 and Mallow Castle €96,000 with a further €96,000 ringfenced for 2025. Overall HSF funding for the County of Cork in 2024 amounts to €362,000.

Since acquiring Mallow Castle House and grounds in 2010, Cork County Council has undertaken substantial remediation works, including the restoration of the walled gardens, enhancement of pathways, improvements to the adjacent Deerpark, restoration works to the Lime Kiln and granary buildings and the addition of an inclusive nature themed playground in 2021. The Council has also begun re-roofing of the Castle House at the cost of €1.6M. HSF funding awarded to the Council will support conservation and repairs of the castle windows.

HSF funding of €20,000 received for Mourneabbey Monastic Site will support Cork County Council in conserving the church and curtilage walls at the south of site, including pointing, repairs and removal of vegetation to prevent further structural decline, as well as conservation works to the church ruins complex.

Welcoming the allocations, Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Frank O’Flynn said, 

This allocation of over €500,000 through the BHIS and HSF is a very welcome investment in the unrivalled built heritage of County Cork. These funds will facilitate important heritage conservation works at 22 different properties throughout the county. Through excellent heritage practice and schemes such as the BHIS and HSF, the built heritage of County Cork is clearly being valued and I wish all applicants success with their projects.

The BHIS assists owners of heritage structures, including those on the local authorities’ Record of Protected Structures and those in Architectural Conservation Areas, to meet their obligations to care for their properties by providing match-funded grants of up to €15,000 for projects. The scheme is not limited to private dwellings; it also provides assistance to a wide range of other important heritage structures and in 2024, funding included the ringfencing of €500,000 for conservation repairs to historic thatched structures across the State.

Speaking of the allocations, Chief Executive of Cork County Council, Valerie O’Sullivan added,

Valerie O'Sullivan

Chief Executive

Cork County Council Headquarters, County Hall, Carrigrohane Road, Cork, Ireland. Eircode: T12 R2NC.

Heritage is one of the county’s greatest assets and as a Council we welcome the opportunity to administer and support these schemes which provide essential funding for the conservation of important heritage buildings.