Rural Development on Show

27 May 2014

The Rural Development Council has welcomed the wide diversity of projects on display at the LEADER stand of the Balmoral Show 2014.

Highlighting the important contribution rural development can offer, many projects, supported by LEADER under the NI Rural Development Programme, were showcased at the three day celebration of farming and rural life.

Rural Development on Show

Engineering works, crafters, a saddlery supplier and events companies and Lough Neagh Rescue were amongst those invited to display at the dedicated LEADER marquee, which was again co-ordinated by DARD for the second year running.  

To supplement the businesses on the stand, tourism and village renewal projects were presented through interactive maps inviting visitors to find out about projects funded locally.

Commenting on the stand, Teresa Canavan, Rural Development Council, said “The dedicated LEADER marquee made a welcome return to the Show.  We were delighted to witness the excellent array of projects on display.

“The Rural Development Programme has supported such a wealth of projects across rural Northern Ireland.  The Balmoral Show provided the perfect backdrop to highlight some of the 1800 projects which have been supported.  From farm diversification and tourism projects to business creation, services and heritage type projects.

“Local Action Groups, in their delivery of LEADER, are to be commended for their efforts in responding to the needs of our rural communities.”



 Editors Notes

The Rural Development Council, the rural development organization for Northern Ireland, was established in 1991 and provides a range of development, support, research, training and delivery services for individuals, farmers, groups, communities, social economy enterprises, public and private sector organizations.

The Northern Ireland Rural Development Programme is worth over £500 million to the rural economy and is implemented across four axes.    Axis 1 is worth in the region of £50 million; Axis 2 £350 million; Axis 3, which is delivered via a local delivery model using ‘the LEADER approach’ (known as Axis 4), involving Joint Council Committees (JCCs) and Local

Action Groups (LAGs), is worth £100 million.

The local (LEADER) delivery model is made up of 7 Clusters:-

  • SWARD: South West Action for Rural Development (Cookstown, Dungannon, Fermanagh, Magherafelt).
  • GROW South Antrim: Generating Rural Opportunities Within South Antrim (Antrim, Carrickfergus, Newtownabbey)
  • SOAR: Southern Organisation for Action in Rural Areas (Armagh, Craigavon, Newry & Mourne)
  • ARC North West: Assisting Rural Communities north west (Derry, Limavady, Omagh, Strabane)
  • North East Region (Ballymena, Ballymoney, Coleraine, Larne, Moyle)
  • Down Rural Area Partnership (Ards, Banbridge, Down, North Down)
  • Lagan Rural Partnership (Belfast, Castlereagh, Lisburn)

For further information contact; Joyce McMullan: or telephone: 028 8676 6980.