Heritage Capacity Fund

A grant scheme for not-for-profit heritage-focused non-governmental organisations (ngos) with a demonstrated national relevance.

The Heritage Capacity Fund (formerly The Heritage Sector Support Fund) aims to support the capacity of organisations, with a demonstrated national relevance, working in the heritage sector by providing funding towards their core costs:

  • to build capacity in the heritage sector by developing and strengthening the skills, processes, and resources that heritage organisations need to survive, adapt, and thrive following the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • to support heritage organisations who play a key role in the heritage infrastructure ofIreland and are vital to the delivery of national policy and plans.

Who can apply:

Not-for-profit, heritage-focused non-governmental organisations (NGOs), with a demonstrated national relevance.

  1. The purpose of the organisation must relate to one of the aspects of heritage mentioned in the Heritage Acts 1995, 2018, or organisations engaged in the protection of intangible cultural heritage as part of Ireland’s commitments to the 2003 UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.
  2. Demonstrated national relevance – the organisation must carry out work that has application at a national scale or, its work is being used to inform policies at a national scale.
  3. Work plan- the organisation must be undertaking innovative small to medium scale actions that provide clear outcomes that assist in the delivery of one or more of the following - the Heritage Council’s strategic plan 2018 -2022; the National Biodiversity Action Plan; and the emerging national heritage plan Heritage Ireland 2030.

Please note Community Heritage Grant Scheme 2022- will open in January
A separate Community Heritage Grant Scheme will be advertised in January 2022 for community/voluntary and not for profit organisations to apply for funding for heritage projects. Further details will be available in the New Year. Such projects should NOT be applied for under the Heritage Capacity Fund.

Grants Information Clinic

A grants information clinic was delivered via zoom on Wednesday 1st December.

What can organisations can apply for:

Costs to help organisations increase capacity and to deliver on heritage priorities at a national level.

Applicants are asked to provide a costed work plan for 2022 covering at least one of the following:

1. Plans which assist their recovery from the economic impact of the COVID 19 pandemic and that helps organisations become more financially resilient.

2. Initiatives that deliver heritage priorities based on programmes that organizations are running already or to initiate new projects.

Note: The Heritage Council is not proposing that new projects be started to avail of this funding but that existing core programmes can be protected.

Types of actions that could be included in a Programme of Work for 2022:

  • Actions that communicate the importance of heritage through advocacy work,
  • Actions that support partnership and networking events that address common challenges and needs within the sector.
  • Provision of community training, advice and support to increase access to and awareness of heritage
  • Actions that promote the practice of conservation to internationally accepted standards through the provision of continuing professional development, professional accreditation, publications, training workshops and bursaries.
  • Data collection and research relating to Ireland’s heritage that can be used for formulating future policy and advice, training workshops and bursaries.
  • Testing and consulting on new activities that will help recovery and diversify your income streams.

How do organisations apply?

Please download and read through the grants information booklet below.

Apply via the Heritage Council's online grant system from 25th November 2021-11th January 2022. Please note that The Heritage Council does not provide or accept paper forms.


  • Open for applications: 25 November – 11 January 2022 at 5pm
  • January/February 2022 In-house professional officer assessment and external panel assessment.
  • Approval of grant offers by Heritage Council board at its February meeting.
  • Notification of outcome to applicants- early March 2022
  • Final report and claim for payment submitted through the Heritage Council’s online grant system 18th November 2022.