Creative Ireland



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Roscommon County Council has announced three guided woodland walks to take place during Heritage Week in August. The Wood for the Trees-Guided Park and Woodland Walks are set to be a fascinating feature of this year’s literary calendar and Roscommon’s Heritage Week. All three walks will be led by Michael Bell, founder of Nature Learn, Chairman of the Sligo Branch of BirdWatch Ireland and a wildlife expert with the Heritage in Schools Scheme. At several locations along the way, Roscommon poets will read their prize-winning nature poems from the Creative Ireland funded Nature Poetry Prize 2020.

Booking is essential due to limited spaces. If you would like to attend please email with your name and preferred walk location. Please adhere to all Covid restrictions in place and keep a safe social distance. These are free events but please note parking fees are in place at Lough Key Forest Park.

The Wood for the Trees is supported by Roscommon County Council Creative Ireland Programme 2020 and 2021. Further information from and


Web Launch of John McGahern Barracks Exhibition Friday 9 April 2021 at 11.30 a.m.

The Exhibition will be launched via a short video by former President of Ireland Mary McAleese on  (The exhibition will open daily once Covid restrictions are lifted).

The exhibition is funded by Roscommon County Council Creative Ireland Programme and the launch is part of Galway 2020 Regional Programme.

John McGahern reminded us that everything interesting begins with one person and one place. What makes the barracks unique is that it was a home as well as a police station, in which gardai were family members, and in which a young boy developed a love of reading and went on to become one of Ireland’s finest writers.

The Reading Room

Through video, storyboards, photos and artefacts, a new permanent exhibition in the John McGahern barracks, Cootehall, Co. Roscommon, celebrates the contribution of McGahern to Irish literature. The exhibition also provides an insight into the nature of policing and an appreciation of village life in Ireland in the middle of the last century.

A 64 page illustrated booklet The John McGahern Barracks, written by Tom Inglis, which introduces readers to the life and works of McGahern, has been produced to accompany the exhibition. It can be purchased from 9th April at

The Barracks restoration, and the exhibition itself, would not have been possible without the financial help and support of Creative Ireland, Galway 2020, Roscommon County Council Arts Office, Roscommon Leader Partnership, OPW and the local community.  

Cootehall Community Development Group is a local voluntary group, formed in 2004, with a key objective to enhance the riverside village of Cootehall, for visitors and residents alike to enjoy.  Since the Garda Station closed in 2012, the groups flagship project is the renovation of the old Garda Station for the dual purposes of a permanent exhibition to commemorate one of Irelands greatest writers John Mc Gahern, and as a location for meetings, seminars, and education courses for interested parties, as well as a remote working space.





Roscommon County Council, together with Creative Ireland and the Decade of Centenaries Programme, is pleased to announce increased funding for the Community Strand in 2021 under the Creative Roscommon & Decade of Centenaries Open Call.


The key objective of the Creative Roscommon Grants 2021 is to provide support to local communities and creatives to deliver collaborative, innovative, ambitious projects and to enable creativity in every community in Roscommon. The level of grant assistance for any one event/project will range from €2,000 to €5,000. Roscommon County Council is also looking for one or two creative projects of larger scale and ambition up to a maximum of €10,000.


The key objective of the Decade of Centenaries Roscommon Grants 2021 is to provide support to local communities to facilitate commemorative actions and events in the county relevant to 1921. Applications are required to respond with sensitivity to the local historical context, acknowledging that there was no uniform experience within counties or across the island of Ireland. The level of grant assistance for any one event/project will average €1,000. In very exceptional circumstances, Roscommon County Council reserves the right to award a sum in excess of this to a project. Further information is available from


In 2020, funding was awarded to a vast number of projects county wide. These included Laura Earley’s ‘Roscommon’s Mosaic Tradition’, Fotofit Camera Club ‘Connections’ in association with Brothers of Charity Roscommon and ‘Save Our World’ a song with the theme of climate action composed by Frankie Simon, commissioned by St Joseph’s Church Choir, Boyle and performed by Climate Eyes – members of St Joseph’s Church Choir.


For Guidelines please click here: Creative Roscommon 2021 Grant Guidelines.doc (size 994.3 KB)

 My Online Services Logo

Applications were submitted via Roscommon County Council’sMy Online Services.

The closing date for submissions was 5th March 2021 at 5pm.  This closing date has passed and we are no longer accepting applications for this funding.


Enquiries can also be sent via email to:creativeireland@roscommoncoco.ieor Contact Áine on (09066) 37271

Projects that received funding were:

Creative Ireland Open Call Projects

The following are examples of projects that have been funded by the Creative Ireland Programme:

Roscommon’s Mosaic Tradition by Laura Earley

To see more from Laura and where you can purchase Roscommon’s Mosaic Tradition please visit

Mosaic Pic 1 Roscommon County Council were delighted to Award Creative Ireland Funding to Laura Earley’s book ‘Roscommon’s Mosaic Tradition’ in response to her application under Creative Roscommon Open Call 2020.


Laura Earley created and designed this documentary photo-book titled 'Roscommon's Mosaic Tradition - Geometric and Artistic Mosaics in the North - West' exploring the practice of mosaics throughout Co. Roscommon and surrounding counties. The artistic photo-book contains an array of documentary photographs, an eloquent introductory text by Writer Tom Roseingrave, archival documents kindly donated by Roscommon County Library and old photographs from local people who were involved in this trade. This book was published by Plusprint.'


Laura is an Artist and Arts Educator from Co. Roscommon. She has a Bachelor's Degree in Textile Design and a Professional Masters in Art and Design Education from the National College of Art and Design. Laura’s art practice explores many different art forms such as textiles, photography and sculpture. Laura has a part time art studio in Dublin with art organisation ‘Block T’ where she produces work for exhibitions and private clients. In the past Laura has exhibited her work in galleries such as Mart Studios, the N.C.A.D Gallery and The Lighthouse Cinema.


Laura successfully co-curated the ‘​Emerging Artists and Designers’ ​ exhibition at Áras an Chontae Ros Comáin for the annual Lamb Festival in May of 2018. Laura taught art at Colaiste Mhuire, Mullingar, Co Westmeath for the academic year 2019/20.



This latest photo-book is in collaboration with writer Tom Roseingrave. Roseingrave is a writer, radio producer and performer living in Ireland. His writing has been published by Fallow Media and RTÉ, and he has made radio documentaries for BBC Radio 4, BBC World Service, and RTÉ Lyric FM.

He is a member of the contemporary music ensemble Kirkos, and has performed at the National Concert Hall, Temple Bar Gallery, and the Royal Irish Academy of Music.

Mosaic Pic 2‘Roscommon’s Mosaic Tradition’ is a follow up to the artist’s 2018 work, in which Laura Earley created a photo-book titled ​‘Artistic Mosaics in the West of Ireland’. The photo-book explored mosaic shop fronts located around Co Roscommon and neighbouring counties. Photographs were produced and interviews with locals were conducted for the purpose of the photo-book. The book was printed and exhibited in a photo-book exhibition at the N.C.A.D Gallery. After producing this body of work the artist realised the potential of this project. The artist felt that she had only scratched the surface of this project and recognised how the photo-book was in need of more research and development.


The images in “Roscommon’s Mosaic Tradition” combined with Roseingrave’s essay pieces inform the reader about the history and origins of the mosaic designs and highlight this part of local history.

Based on Roscommon’s heritage, it records, through lens based media, the mosaic shop fronts around Co Roscommon and neighbouring counties. Informing locals about the story and history of this trade. It acknowledges and appreciates the work of those who were involved in this industry in Co Roscommon – in particular Luciano Di Paulo, Sergio Benedetti and John Crean - and serves to highlight how County Roscommon was one of the only counties in Ireland (aside from a small business in the North of Ireland) that produced ‘Artists Mosaics’ between 1940 up until the year 2000.Mosaic Pic 3



This photobook is a record of my research and photography of these mosaics. My only hope is that these unique geometric and artistic designs will be protected and preserved for many years to come so that future generations can witness and appreciate their beauty.” Laura Earley


The Crankie Box Song Project

In this audio visual project, Singer Cathy Jordan (from the band Dervish), presents 3 traditional Roscommon songs on video, featuring original artwork by Peter Crann animating the theme of each song. The artists use a vintage scrolling moving panorama device known as a “Crankie Box” to present their work. As the lyrics and themes unfold during each song, each of Peter's drawings scroll slowly in front of a back-lit screen to create an intimate and atmospherically mechanical and tactile “live “music video”.

Crankie Song Project Background




"Eileen Og”

"Una Bhan”


Singing to Save Our World…

Save Our World

Composer: Frankie Simon

Commissioned by St Joseph’s Church Choir, Boyle, Co Roscommon, Ireland

Performed by Climate Eyes – members of St Joseph’s Church Choir


When a Boyle Choir had to take a necessary break from their usual choir rehearsals and mass services in March this year, they embarked on a new project, following recommended guidelines, as restrictions began to lift in May. With thanks to funding from the Community Strand of the Creative Ireland Programme managed by Roscommon County Council, the choir commissioned composer and choir member, Frankie Simon to write a song he had been contemplating since September 2019. How could it be fake news?

The music and words refer to many of the issues being raised globally by climate and environmental experts and, notably, by 17 year old Greta Thunberg. In September 2019, her speech at the United Nations Climate Action Summit brought headline news to the world and became known as ‘The Greta – Trump Showdown”.

25 members of St Joseph’s Church Choir took up the challenge – half of the choir’s usual members – to learn the music virtually followed by a number of rehearsals in small groups, wearing masks, in their large parish church in Boyle Co Roscommon. Recording took place during August, in groups of three, at Paul Gurney’s Recording Studio in Newtownforbes, Co Longford. Musicians, and a rap artist, were recorded individually and the song completed under the masterful eyes and ears of composer Frankie Simon, together with Paul Gurney.

An animated video was commissioned to complete the project, from Peter Kilmartin of Spicy Dog Media in Roscommon.

The audio video is now available on Climate Eyes YouTube Channel

Funded by Roscommon County Council Creative Ireland Programme 2020

For further information please contact: / Rhona 086 818 7929

RCC logoCreative Ireland Logo

Creative Communities Jobs Stimulus Measure 2020 - Open for applications under three programmes, see below links for application forms and information sheets.


Creative_Communities_Residencies_Application_Form.doc (size 267.8 KB)

Creative_Communities_Residencies_Information_Sheet.doc (size 2.6 MB)


Creative_Roscommon_Craft_2020_Information_Sheet.docx (size 681.4 KB)

Creative_Roscommon_Craft_Programme_Application_Form.doc (size 266.2 KB)


Roscommon_Creatives_Open_Call_Application_Form.doc (size 267.3 KB)

Roscommon_Creatives_Open_Call_Information_Sheet.doc.docx (size 681.5 KB)

The Creative Ireland Programme

The Creative Ireland Programme is the Government’s Legacy Programme for Ireland 2016 – a five-year initiative, from 2017 to 2022, which places creativity at the centre of public policy. It is a high-level, high-ambition, all-of-government initiative to mainstream creativity in the life of the nation so that individually and collectively, in our personal lives and in our institutions, we can realise our full creative potential.

The Creative Ireland Programme is a culture-based programme designed to promote individual, community and national wellbeing. The core proposition is that participation in cultural activity drives personal and collective creativity, with significant implications for individual and societal wellbeing and achievement. 

Creative Ireland is also the main implementation vehicle for the priorities identified in the Government’s policy document, Culture 2025- Éire Ildánach, which states that arts and culture are intrinsic to the Irish State, acknowledges the need to increase access to and participation in the arts, boost our creative industries, and preserve our heritage with a particular focus on language, landscape and the environment. 

The programme is built around the themes of identity, culture and citizenship. The core operating principles are Collaboration and Communication, Community Empowerment and Internationalisation. 

Local authorities have a crucial role in the overall local delivery of the entire Creative Ireland programme and are exclusively mandated, through their culture teams, to deliver Pillar 2 of the programme – Enabling Creativity in Every Community. This devolution of responsibility for Creative Ireland to local authorities is inspired by the extraordinary impact of collaborative local authority co-ordinated projects for the centenary of 1916. 

In 2017 a Culture Team was established in Roscommon County Council comprising of staff from the Arts, Heritage, Library and Corporate Services departments. The Culture Team together with the Creative Ireland Project Office hosted an open meeting in March 2017 at Áras an Chontae, Roscommon. The meeting provided an opportunity to explore how best to increase access to and engagement with the arts, heritage and creative industries in the county. The input from the discussions informed the content of the Council’s Culture and Creativity Plan 2017 which set out the Council’s projects and initiatives for 2017. 

The vision and intent of the Creative Ireland Programme is to promote collaboration between different levels of government and engagement with the broad cultural sector, creative practitioners, creative industries and the public.

Roscommon County Council Culture and Creativity Plan 2017.pdf (size 964.8 KB)

The next stage of this Programme is the preparation of Roscommon County Council’s Culture and Creativity Strategy 2018-2022. This Strategy will be an overarching plan for the county and will relate to and have links with the Arts and Heritage Plans and the Library service and will support the further development and enrichment of the delivery of the Creative Ireland Programme in Roscommon 

The Creative Ireland vision for Roscommon is that every person will have an opportunity to experience, enjoy and engage with the limitless nature of County Roscommon’s rich creative vein. 

The five strategic priorities of Culture and Creativity Strategy 2018-2022 are:  

Creative Children and Youth


  • The Roscommon Culture and Creativity Strategy 2018 – 2022 will seek to ensure that children and young people have increased access to tuition, experience and participation in the arts, heritage and library activities by 2022. Participation in creative and cultural activities equips children and young people to grow and develop in their personal lives and helps give them life skills for the future.
  • The Roscommon County Council Culture Team   will continue to promote access to cultural activities for children and young   people so that they have the opportunity to experience high quality culture   in a non formal setting as creatives, participants, spectators and critics. 

Creative Communities


  • The consultation processes highlighted a desire for people to have access to cultural provision locally. This Strategy will enable local communities to develop their own cultural capacity, to plan, programme, and produce and manage cultural activity at a local level. This is turn will help to develop greater inclusivity in communities, reflect specific identities and build local audiences for culture and creative engagement. 

    Climate change is one of the most pressing social and political challenges of this generation, and it cannot be addressed through policy and technology alone. It is through the medium of culture and creativity that the underlying ethical, cultural, political and economic questions will be deliberated on, and that new sustainable values and ways of living will be disseminated.


Creative Culture Infrastructure


  • Arts venues and facilities are a major determinant of arts engagement. The existence of a well managed, accessible arts venue can raise the level of opportunity to attend arts events, exhibitions and performances. Strategic and sustainable investment in the development of arts infrastructure in the county is necessary to ensure that the public can enjoy a wide range of quality arts experiences both as audiences and participants. On-going investment in technology in the libraries will ensure that the public can continue to engage with these valuable services while continued focus on the value and importance of our built and natural heritage will preserve it for future generations.

Creative Industry and Enterprise Sector


  • The creative industry and enterprise sector requires high quality information, training, mentoring and financial support to build capacity in product designs, access to market and increase job potential.

Creative Awareness and Communication

  • Create awareness of the Creative Ireland Programme and disseminate information in an efficient manner throughout the county to enable inclusivity and participation in cultural and creative activities beneficial to the social, economic wellbeing of our communities.