By Carmel Hayes
GRANTS of almost €200,000 have been announced for five remote working enterprise hubs in Laois.
Portlaoise, Mountrath, Vicarstown, Barrowhouse and Portarlington will share €199,686, under the national Connected Hubs Scheme funding announced this morning.
A total of €487,000 is going to Laois-Offaly under the scheme, with hubs in Offaly getting over €287,000. The funding is part of the government’s ‘Our Rural Future’ programme, which was launched earlier this year.
The biggest grant in Laois will go to Portarlington’s PEC Innovation Hub, which will receive €67,500. The money will be spent on a project to extend the capacity and sustainability of the hub and implement a multi-functional technical space, which involves a suite of laptops and headsets and a 70″ interactive screen.
Portlaoise Enterprise Centre has been granted €55,000 for upgrades to lighting and windows, installation of LED external signage and energy efficiency measures.
In Mountrath, BloomHQ has been awarded €25,426 to provide a space for a community education programme, which will start at second level through a community grinds scheme and develop into a mentorship programme for third level.
Vicarstown Community Centre will receive €34,470 to invest in additional remote working capacity for the region, which includes Ballybrittas, Emo, Stradbally and Timahoe.
Shanganaghmore BCP Barrowhouse Community will get €17,290 to buy office furniture and IT equipment, including laptops, projector screens and a coded door entry system. They also plan to develop a new webpage and create a booking tool.