€1.2bn to be invested in culture heritage and Irish language

Updated / Friday, 13 Apr 2018 14:18

Pictured at today's Project Ireland 2040 announcement: Minister of State Joe McHugh, Minister for Finance Paschal Donohue Minister for Culture, Heritage & the Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar

By Sinead Crowley

Almost €1.2 billion euro is to be invested in culture, heritage and language projects as part of Project Ireland 2040.

The funding programme, announced earlier today at a special forum held in the National Gallery of Ireland, includes €460 million for national cultural institutions, €265 million for cultural and creativity investment, €285 million for the natural and built heritage and €178 million for the Gaeltacht, the islands and the Irish language.

Priority projects include renovation work at the National Library, the National Concert Hall, Irish Museum of Modern Art and the National Archives, redevelopment of the Crawford Gallery and the Abbey Theatre, improvements to the Chester Beatty Library and further phases of the redevelopment at the National Gallery of Ireland.

Speaking today, Minister for Culture, Heritage & the Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan said: "Cultural infrastructure provides a home for all of us, a space for all us to meet, to exchange ideas, to create the new, to imagine what could be. With this announcement, I am delighted that we have delivered on an important pillar of the Creative Ireland Programme."

There will also be investment in the audio visual industries, regional arts centres, galleries and studios, as well as a €10 million national digitisation programme and funding of €15 million to Galway, in its capacity as EU Capital of Culture 2020.

Speaking at the launch today, the Taoiseach said the plan is fully funded, and forms part of his commitment to double government spending on arts culture and heritage over the next seven years.