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Rural Business Development Grant Scheme

Rural Business Development Grant Scheme

*** THIS GRANT HAS NOW CLOSED ***

Thank you for your Application

Acknowledgement Letters have been issued to all applicants.

The Tackling Rural Poverty and Social Isolation Programme’s (TRPSI) Rural Business Development Grant Scheme aims to support the sustainability, survival and development of micro rural businesses across Northern Ireland by providing a small capital grant for the business. The TRPSI Programme is funded by the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs, and this grant Programme is administered and managed by local Councils.

This is a capital grant scheme to support the purchase of new capital items or activities including equipment, machinery and building works, which cost at least £1,000 and no more than £20,000.

Please note that you can only apply for a grant from either the Rural Micro Business Growth Scheme or the Rural Business Development Grant Scheme.

Examples of eligible expenditure includes:

  • Computer equipment, to include ICT equipment to facilitate staff working remotely.
  • Computer software (outright purchase; ongoing license fees are not eligible).
  • E-commerce Websites to allow online purchase capabilities.
  • New equipment/ machinery.
  • Modifying the internal layout of business premises to ensure compliance with COVID-19 social distancing protocols for example, flexi-panels in work areas, building/ remodeling works.
  • Building works to bring an area of a building back into economic use or improve/change the use of the building

Other examples of eligible expenditure can be found in the TRPSI Guidance Notes

The Scheme can provide funding of up to 50% of costs for capital items up to a maximum of £4,999. The minimum grant awarded will be £500. The total cost of the capital project must be a minimum of £1,000 and must not exceed £20,000. Applicants must provide the remaining match funding towards the project.

This is a competitive process and all grants awarded will be determined on the base of merit.

You can apply for a Rural Business Development Grant if:

  • Your business is based in a rural area within the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council. A rural area is defined as an area with a population of less than 5,000 residents. The urban areas of Craigavon Urban Area including Aghacommon, Banbridge, Armagh and Dromore are not eligible.
  • You are an existing, registered private Business or Social Economy Enterprise that is actively trading commercially.
  • Your business currently employs less than 10 full-time equivalent employees.
  • You are appropriately insured or prepared to obtain appropriate insurance if awarded a grant.
  • After receiving, a Letter of Offer (estimated October/November 2020) successful applicants must begin and complete their project by 26 February 2021.
  • You are aged 18 or above at the application deadline.
  • Only one application can be accepted per business/ legal entity.
  • Sports Clubs and Community Groups can only be considered if they are commercially trading and generate sales revenue from selling goods and services to customers who are not exclusively Club or Community Group members.

A full list of eligibility criteria alongside details of who cannot apply can be found in the TRPSI Guidance Notes

Applicants who are deemed successful must be able to attend a Letter Of Offer workshop (Date TBC).  Failure to attend these workshops will result in your Letter of Offer being withdrawn.

Applications must be received by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council electronically by 12 Noon on Friday 11 September 2020.

Any applications received after this time will not be accepted.

Applications and claim documentation should be emailed to

This grant scheme accepts application and claim documentation in electronic form.  You must use the same email address throughout the process for submitting your application form and any Letter of Offer and claim documentation.

Further information on the programme and application procedure can be found in the Application Guidance Form

Applying for a DEARA Rural Business Dev Grant