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Extra cash sees Council plan SIX more popular outdoor cinema events

Extra money for St Patrick's Day in Armagh and Farmers' Market in Dromore

Drive-in cinema, Armagh

Six outdoor cinema events are to be held in Portadown, Lurgan and Banbridge.

Such events have previously been held at Solitude Park in Banbridge and the People’s Park.

But more are planned thanks to a £61,000 funding offer from the Department for Communities.

Out of that, extra money will also be directed to the St Patrick’s Day celebrations in Armagh.

And the people of Dromore will get to enjoy a Farmers’ Market.

Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council had previously agreed to progress work on urban centre regeneration projects.

That was last June, with the intention being to make applications for funding to the Department for Communities as part of the revitalisation and capital projects schemes.

Council officers are in regular contact with the Department to try and ensure any chance to secure funding for town centre regeneration initiatives during the current financial year is realised.

But due to what has been described as “continued uncertainty regarding budget availability” within the Department, it has not been possible to confirm planned initiatives within the urban centres for the remainder of the financial year.

The Department for Communities has now approached the council and offered £61,000 to be spent on ‘town centre revenue’ projects during the remainder of the financial year.

Officers, in a report to council committee, reveal: “In order to deliver within the available time while maximising impact across a number of locations, it is considered that this budget be split between a series of town centre events and a landlord mentoring programme.

“In terms of events, six outdoor cinema events are planned for Banbridge, Lurgan and Portadown town centres, while additional funding will also be directed to the St Patrick’s Day celebration in Armagh, and a farmer’s market in Dromore.

“The landlord mentoring scheme will be made available across all urban centres. This will incorporate one-to-one mentoring and capacity building along with the development of a digital toolkit.”

It is understood plans for all are currently being drawn up.

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