About the Creative Ireland Programme

The Creative Ireland Programme is guided by a vision that every person in Ireland will have the opportunity to realise their full creative potential. It is a five year all-of-Government initiative, from 2017 to 2022, to place creativity at the centre of public policy.

Creative Ireland 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 Website

Sligo Colmcille 1500, Creative Ireland Funded Events

Creative Sligo Open Call Funding 2021

A five-year Sligo Culture and Creativity Strategy 2018-2022 has been published by Sligo County Council. A key element in this strategic plan is to enable creativity in every community. The Creative Sligo Open Call is an opportunity for the cultural sector, community groups, artists and creatives to apply for funding in order to work collaboratively with communities, places of interest and latest technologies in realising the vision of Creative Ireland, in 2021.




Application form and criteria: Creative_Sligo_Open_Call_2021_ApplicationForm_and_Guidelines


For further information email:  creativeireland@sligococo.ie

RIOT Commission for Sligo Town


Sligo County Council Culture Team announces an exciting new commission opportunity on the theme of Re-imagining our Town, RIOT!  Proposals are being invited for creative and innovative work produced collaboratively.

Donal Tinney, head of Sligo Culture Team, describes the potential: ‘In the spirit of Creative Ireland, the commission is open to individuals and communities working across the arts, culture and creative industries, and to collaborations between people working across sectors or disciplines representing the broad spectrum of culture and creative industries.   This commission is an opportunity to create a new piece of work that will explore and address the issues, themes and possibilities raised by RIOT.’

The commission will form part of the stimulating online RIOT conference broadcasting internationally from Sligo in March  2021.  This two-day event, will provide an opportunity to rethink Sligo city and design its future.   This future will be shaped by our creativity, our imagination, our innovations, our heritage, our ability to work together  – our culture.  The event will present working challenges to leading thinkers and creatives, from culture, community and business backgrounds drawn from Sligo, Ireland and International sources.

Further information on the RIOT commission is available at this link :

Commission Call

Deadline for applications is 4pm Monday 14th December 2020

Enquiries can be directed to

Mary McDonagh, Public Art Officer, Sligo County Council, CIcommission@sligococo.ie

Please include a phone number in your email enquiry

RIOT :  Sligo 21 – Tuesday 23/Wednesday 24 March 2021 – Virtual Conference

Four internationally curated conversations probing the role of culture in the development and regeneration of small cities.

All details and booking for this free event:  www.riotsligo.ie

The RIOT : SLIGO virtual conference will curate conversations with a cross section of experts and innovators from places and projects that have been transformed through ground breaking collaborations.

Participants will learn of collaborations involving artists, communities, businesses and the arts, culture and creative industries, touching many strata of society and economies.

As each speaker relates their experiences and learning, a key feature of these exchanges will be comments and questions from the virtual audience.

Conversation 1 : The New Paradigm – Creativity, Culture, Society Economy

Conversation 2 : What Are we talking about when we talk about Culture?

Conversation 3 : How do we develop the resource of Culture to the benefit of people, community, and economy?

Conversation 4 : What is Sligo’s POSITION in the 21st century? Who are we now and tomorrow?

The Five Pillars of the Programme:

  1. Children and Youth: Enabling the Creative Potential of Every Child
  2. Creative Communities: Enabling Creativity in Every Community
  3. Cultural Investment: Investing in our Creative and Cultural Infrastructure
  4. Creative Industries: Ireland as a Centre of Creative Excellence
  5. Global Reputation: A Creative and Cultural Nation

Local Authorities have a crucial role in the local delivery of the Creative Ireland Programme and are exclusively mandated, through their Culture Teams, to deliver Pillar 2 of the programme. This devolution of responsibility for the Creative Ireland Programme to local authorities is inspired by the extraordinary impact of local authority co-ordinated collaborative projects for the 1916 Centenary Programme.


Cosmopolitan yet singular, ancient yet forward-thinking, Sligo enjoys its much-deserved status as the cultural capital of the northwest of Ireland. The county’s rich literary and cultural heritage, which stretches back to ancient times, is an energising force for the citizens of Sligo, as well as a wonderful showcase for visitors from around the globe.

The famous medieval manuscripts the Book of Ballymote, the Great Book of Lecan, and the Yellow Book of Lecan were written in Sligo, and so central to the identity of the county is its literary legacy that the county crest even features an open book with Celtic cross and red rose. Folk heroine Queen Maeve is reputed to be entombed here, and among Sligo’s famous creatives past and present are poet and Nobel laureate William Butler Yeats, musical luminaries James Morrison, Westlife and The Conway Sisters, and artist Jack Butler Yeats.

Since obtaining the title of European Capital of Volunteering in 2017, Sligo’s contributions to the Creative Ireland programme, centred around the themes of identity, culture and citizenship, continue to highlight an exemplary approach to creative access for all its citizens, and help to secure this rich heritage for generations to come. For more goto https://www.creativeireland.gov.ie/en/creative-communities/sligo

Creative Ireland Team

Donal Tinney
Creative Ireland Coordinator & Librarian

Tom Kilfeather
Acting Chief Executive, Sligo County Council

Dorothy Clarke
Director of Services

Patricia Keane
Senior Executive Librarian

Margaret McConnell
Senior Executive Officer

Mary McDonagh
Public Art Officer

Stephen Walshe
Admin Officer LEO

Ultan McNasser
Executive Librarian

Michael Carthy
Senior Executive Engineer, Tourism

Lou McGrath

Siobhan Ryan
Heritage Officer

Michelle Brennan
Librarian, Acting