Local Authority Collaboration

Having a successful collaboration with your local authority is a key relationship for a Chamber. There are many unique ways a Chamber can work with its local authority for the betterment of the area.

Overall winner:

South Dublin Chamber – Sustainable Business Partnership Programme with South Dublin County Council , South Dublin LEO and South Dublin Chamber

In 2011, South Dublin Chamber, South Dublin County Council and South Dublin LEO came together as partners to form the Sustainable Business Programme. The aim of this programme is to empower businesses to consider the sustainability and long-term future of their business. This partnership has a strong focus on job creation at the local level achieved through strengthening local businesses engaging with the programme.  This positive response to supporting business development and job creation in the local community is driven through the power of collaboration by the partners involved.

The programme provides direct 1 to1 meetings with the SBP Executive who links the business to agencies and support them through any difficulties they may have in accessing same. South Dublin Chamber and LEO provide joint training courses covering a range of topics. The program also has a role in tourism, developing Galeforce Dublin race now in its 3rd year as part of the sustainability of tourism by hosting this event. The research and economic development of the program is evident in the county wide surveys the program has undertaken, one survey required calling directly to every business in the county, involving 4,500 interviews and analyses of the information.

Other shortlisted projects:

Bray Chamber – Bray in Business (BIB)

Bray in Business (BIB) is an initiative designed to help footfall in Bray, to attract more businesses and to secure a long-term sustainable model for the management of the town.  BIB represents businesses in Bray and provides the opportunity to deliver projects that will make a tangible difference to the town.

The BIB Team has launched this guide to assist new businesses looking to trade in Bray and to support existing businesses by providing advice on what their Council and Town can do for them. The BIB aims to help new businesses throughout the process of finding a property and will provide on-going continued assistance from the start of the process on to when your business is well established. Establishing a business in Bray will mean becoming part of a supportive and vibrant business community and gives you access to all of BIB’s resources and advice.

County Kildare Chamber – Healthy Ireland Week

County Kildare Chamber, the largest business organisation in Kildare collaborated with Kildare County Council in hosting a week long health and wellbeing initiative entitled “Healthy Ireland Week”. 

Over 1,050 people attended an array of complimentary events across the county aiming to promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle whilst discussing important topics such as mental health, depression and drug abuse. The initiative was secured through funding available from Healthy Ireland and all key stakeholders in Kildare worked collaboratively to ensure the initiative was a resounding success. County Kildare Chamber was the first Chamber in Ireland to secure funding for such an initiative. County Kildare Chamber pride itself on its continuous positive working relationship with its local authority.

County Meath Chamber – The National Enterprise Town ‘Rising Star’ Award Winner 2018 – The Sawmills Studios & Kells Printing Works

In 2016, a rare and intact ‘mothballed’ printing works, dating back to the late 19th century was rediscovered in Kells, Co. Meath. For three decades 5 pre-Victorian printing presses and an extensive collection of old-type fonts were lost in time in a workshop where a calendar still marked the date of its closure and the death of its owner Briany Finnegan on May 6th, 1983.

The discovery provided the catalyst to develop a unique and innovative project to establish Kells as Irelands first typographic centre, celebrating lettering as an art form and capitalising on Kells unique history of lettering, heritage and tourism. The initiative was spearheaded by Mark Smith, a local artist and the Creative Director of Kells TypeTrail Festival.

In 2018, Meath Chamber’s collaboration with Meath County Council succeeded in winning ‘The Rising Star’ Award of the BOI National Enterprise Town Awards (€20K) on the strength of the work of Mark Smith and his team on this project.

Drogheda Chamber – Fleadh Cheoil Na hEireann, Drogheda 2018

The town of Drogheda was the host town for the 2018 Fleadh Cheoil Festival.  This week-long festival is a celebration of Irish Music Song and Dance and is the biggest such event in the world attracting an estimated 450,000 visitors from Ireland and abroad according to Fáilte Ireland.

 The event is hosted in one town each year, with the host town bidding for the event. The Bid process commenced in 2012 and was driven by Drogheda Chamber in conjunction with the local Comhaltas group and the Local Authority. Even though the Fleadh Cheoil has been staged in many locations in the previous 66 years it was never staged on the East coast.

The Festival comprises workshops with world renowned musicians and competitions with competitors drawn from national and international qualifying rounds.  In addition to the core Fleadh activities the town also hosts many fringe events such as concerts, CD launches and street busking, all centred on the theme of Irish culture. During the event the centre of the town was closed to traffic and became one civic space, this required considerable cooperation from the town centre businesses and the Local Authority.

Dungarvan Chamber – Dungarvan Tourist Office

A strategic partnership was initiated in 2014 between the Dungarvan & West Waterford Chamber, Waterford City & County Council and CMT Community Services Scheme regarding the operations, structure, staffing and future of the Dungarvan Tourist Office. This partnership allows the continued development of Tourist Office activities in line with the Tourism objectives for the region and for the development of tourism in Dungarvan.

This partnership demonstrates a commitment to developing an integrated, vibrant tourism network that connects to the strong business network established by the Chamber, which together deliver a cohesive, high standard tourism product.

This partnership was reviewed in 2018 and deemed to be very successful for all parties and for the town in general – increases in footfall indicators and bed nights are reflected in the economy, especially in the tourism industry. As a result, the contract will be reviewed again in 2020.

Kilkenny Chamber – Age Friendly Accreditation for Kilkenny Businesses

The Kilkenny Age Friendly Business Accreditation programme is a programme of training, delivered by Age Friendly Ireland, allowing customer facing businesses to be certified as an Age Friendly Business.

The programme is facilitated by Kilkenny Chamber, Kilkenny County Council, the Local Enterprise Office, Kilkenny Age Friendly Forum and Kilkenny PPN.  It aims to highlight Kilkenny city and county as a “go-to” Age Friendly destination, thereby triggering increased visitor numbers, and to encourage businesses to consider the needs of their older customers.

The programme uses online and practical interactive training to assist businesses to make low cost, or no cost, adaptations to their places of work in order to celebrate every generation.

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