(Photo by PAUL FAITH/AFP via Getty Images)
The Government has announced that €17 million is to be made available to help businesses serving food pay for more outdoor seating.
The Minister for Tourism Carterine Martin the scheme aims to help businesses increase their dining and seating capacity in the short-term and "enable a long-term strategy for local authorities to develop appropriate permanent weatherproofed outdoor dining infrastructure".
Grants are to be made available for around €4,000 and businesses who have already made improvements can still apply to cover any expenses already incurred from last April.
Today we announced with @cathmartingreen a new €17million Outdoor Dining Enhancement Scheme for tourism & hospitality businesses, & Local Authorities, to develop short & long-term solutions to increase outdoor dining capacity for Summer 2021 & beyond. 👉https://t.co/TpPRQTvLqp pic.twitter.com/h4WjLe6cz0— Fáilte Ireland (@Failte_Ireland) March 31, 2021
The announcement by the Minister in conjunction with Fáilte Ireland, also makes funding available to local authorities to develop permanent public dining spaces in specially zoned streets in towns and cities .
Each local authority can apply for funding up to €200,000 to facilitate weather-proofing to allow outdoor dining all year-round.
The hospitality sector has been hit hard and sustained severe losses since the beginning of restrictions.