Realising our Rural Potential

The Department of Rural and Community Development has responsibility for promoting and facilitating long-term economic and social progress across rural Ireland. The Department is responsible for co-ordinating the Action Plan for Rural Development.  Other key areas of responsibility include the implementation of the LEADER elements of the

Rural Development Programme 2014-2020 and the delivery of a range of other schemes, including a Rural Recreation Scheme, the Rural Walks Scheme, a Town and Village Enhancement scheme and the CLÁR Programme. The oversight of preparations for the timely roll-out of broadband is also a key priority.

Latest News

Pat SpillaneThe former GAA Kerry footballer, Mr. Pat Spillane, was appointed as an Ambassador for Realising our Rural Potential – the Action Plan for Rural Development.  Mr. Spillane previously acted as Chair of the Commission for the Economic Development of Rural Areas, known as CEDRA. The Ambassador will assist in communicating the objectives of the Action plan and work to engage local communities in its delivery. Mr. Spillane is a member of the Monitoring Committee which will oversee the implementation of the Action Plan.  Mr. Spillane will be looking at areas of good practice which could be replicated across rural communities in Ireland and will be reporting to the Committee on the impact the Action Plan is having in practice on rural Ireland and will report any obstacles to delivery.  He is happy to meet communities and individuals who are working across the country to help maximise the potential of their own areas. You can contact Pat through the following email address:

Policies & Initiatives

Use the links to find out about the many initiatives and programmes available.