29/05/2008

Welcome For Antrim Project's Job Creation

A new community-based develoment which is creating employment opportunities in Co Antrim has been welcomed by the NI Social Development Minister Margaret Ritchie.

She helped to launch the new, mixed-use resource and business project in Antrim town.

Located on a green field site at Norfolk Drive in the Rathenraw estate, the project will create 12 full time and four part time jobs.

The new three-storey building, measuring approximately 13,700 square feet, will contain workspace and office units, an internet café and IT suite, crèche facilities and conference and meeting rooms.

Minister Ritchie, whose department provided £656,945 towards the overall cost of the building, through its Areas at Risk strategy, recognised the efforts of the Farranshane Community Trust.

Funds also came from the International Fund for Ireland, Community Relations Council, NIHE, Antrim Borough Council and the community group itself.

The Minister said: "This project has been created to help local people at the heart of this estate in Antrim. It is an excellent example of what can be achieved when statutory and funding organisations work in partnership with local communities on the ground to deliver services that provide real benefits for local people."

Speaking at the launch, Denis Rooney, Chairman of the International Fund for Ireland which contributed £603,762 to the project said: "This project will bring new economic potential to the estate, allowing it to promote social and physical regeneration and will also strengthen and underpin community life in the long term."

Jim Dennison, Director of Community Relations Council’s European Programme, said: "Farranshane Community Trust was awarded £82,000 in 2006 under the Capital build element, of the Peace II Extension Programme.

"The Community Relations Council are very pleased to have been involved in funding what we believe will be a lasting and sustainable resource to enhance community life and relations in the Antrim area."

Adrian Cochrane Watson, Mayor of Antrim said: "This development is not only excellent news for Rathenraw but represents an outstanding example of what can be achieved through partnership and collaboration between the public and community sectors."

(PR)


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