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National Lottery support for Lurgan regeneration plans

The unique character of buildings in Lurgan are to be revitalised following a lottery grant of £2 million. Pictured is public art currently on show in the town, which depict earlier linen industries

THE unique character of buildings in Lurgan town centre are to be revitalised following a lottery grant of £2 million.

With architectural heritage dating back to the 17th century, many of the buildings in the Co Armagh town have fallen into disrepair or have been left vacant or underused.

But National Lottery funding awarded to Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council will see the restoration of buildings within the town's conservation area.

The five-year Lurgan Townscape Heritage project will repair and conserve historic buildings throughout the town's commercial core, breathing new life into the town centre and boosting the local economy with the creation of new jobs and retail space.

The grant will also go towards a programme of events such as town tours, storytelling sessions and traditional skills and crafts workshops which it is hoped will help bring people into the town centre to learn more about and get involved in the unique heritage of the area.

Paul Mullan from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) said the "exciting plans will regenerate the historic streetscape and celebrate the rich cultural heritage of Lurgan".

"The heart of the town will be transformed and reimagined as a vibrant space for people to use, visit and enjoy, and we are delighted to be involved," he said.

Garath Keating, Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon said the funding will help "enable us to further develop our rich and varied heritage offer".

"This will enhance Lurgan's historic buildings, bringing them back into economic use and creating employment opportunities in Lurgan," he said.

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