Operational Programme 'United Kingdom - Ireland' - (PEACE III)

Programme under the European Territorial Cooperation Objective, co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)

United Kingdom

Additional tools


On 6 November 2007, the European Commission approved a European Territorial Cooperation Programme for Northern Ireland and the Border Regions of Ireland (Louth, Monaghan, Cavan, Leitrim, Sligo and Donegal) for the 2007-2013 period. The Operational Programme "Peace and Reconciliation (PEACE III)" falls within the European Territorial Cooperation objective framework and has a total budget of around €333 million. Community assistance through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) amounts to €225 million.

1. Aim and purpose of the programme

The Programme is a distinctive EU Structural Funds Programme that aims to reinforce a peaceful and stable society by promoting reconciliation in Northern Ireland and the Border Region. The Programme will advance social and economic stability in the region by supporting actions that promote cohesion between communities. The Programme will assist Northern Ireland and the Border Region by focusing on reconciling communities specifically and contributing towards a shared society. The Programme will carry forward the key aspects of the previous peace programmes (PEACE I and II) and will have a continued and renewed emphasis on reconciliation.

2. Priorities

Specific objectives of the Operational Programme for Peace and Reconciliation include:

  • reconciling communities
  • contributing to a shared society.
Priority 1: Reconciling communities [approximately 57.4% of total funding]

This Priority aims to challenge attitudes towards sectarianism and racism and to support conflict resolution and mediation in the local community. The priority will support the implementation of strategic models of collaboration between the public and private sectors that focus on reconciliation, cultural diversity and equality. It aims to establish meaningful cross-community and cross-border initiatives that will improve trust and acceptance, and to reduce sectarianism and racism.

Moreover, the activities under this priority provide advice, counselling and victim support services, and for the victim’s relatives and their caregivers. This priority will provide support to improve conflict-resolution accessibility support services to include counselling, befriending and other community-based services that facilitate comprehensive support service approaches. The priority will build an individual’s capacity to handle the transition to peace and reconciliation and ensure that conflict victims and survivors are able to cope with the past on their own terms.

Priority 2: Contributing to a shared society [approximately 36.7% of total funding]

The objective of this priority focuses on the regeneration of urban, rural and border areas that appear derelict, segregated, under-used, threatening or unwelcoming. The purpose is to transform these areas into shared spaces. The intervention seeks to tackle the problems of community separation within society as a while and to address the underlying problems of sectarianism, racism and prejudice by encouraging the development of physical environments that are not ‘marked out’ with symbols that define it as a territory of one side of a community but as open and welcoming to all.

By complementing processes and relationships established in the priority 1, priority 2 will provide funding for new, shared public spaces and help address the issues of physical segregation as manifested by peace walls and sectarian graffiti, flags or emblems.

This priority aims also to develop the capacity of key institutions to deliver services in a manner that contribute to a shared society within Northern Ireland and on a cross-border basis. In turn, the achievement of this objective will contribute to the development of a shared vision for society as well as to attitudinal, social and economic changes that affect reconciliation efforts.

Priority 3: Technical assistance [approximately 6.0% of total funding]

The programme will utilize technical assistance during implementation. Technical assistance will include administration, monitoring, evaluation and control.

Financial and Technical information

Operational Programme 'United Kingdom - Ireland' - (PEACE III)

Intervention Type

Operational Programme

CCI no


Number of decision


Final approval date


Breakdown of finances by priority axis

Priority Axis EU Investment National Public Contribution Total Public Contribution
Reconciling communities 128 952 254 61 966 046 190 918 300
Contributing to a shared society 82 402 656 39 597 344 122 000 000
Technical Assistance 13 490 738 6 482 769 19 973 507
Total 224 845 648 108 046 159 332 891 807