boi_header_logo.jpg
Nominate your local area for the Begin Together Awards 2020
The search is on to find Ireland’s most enterprising towns and villages. If you would like to nominate your local area to enter the awards tell us below. Your nomination will be forwarded to your local authority for consideration.

The final entrants will be visited by a panel of judges and will get the chance to showcase the spirit of enterprise in their community.

Simply nominate your preferred town, village or urban area below
This town listing is comprised of previous entries.
Disclaimer* Final nominations are the responsibility of the relevant local authority which considers a range of criteria as part of the nominations process of which pubic recommendations are one. Recommendations are not binding and no feedback will be provided on the nominations process.
Thank you for your entry. All nominations will be forwarded to your local authority for consideration. Stay tuned to bankofireland.com/begintogether for a list of all confirmed entrants which will be issued in early July.
Appendix 1

300 word (maximum) summary of town/city area to include key information and important features of the town.
  • Introduction to town/city area
  • Key demographics
  • Main features of town/city area
  • List specific examples of economic and social enterprise initiatives you wish to present and or show to the judges
  • List examples of initiatives that have happened in the town which aim to create a better understanding of the finances of the businesses and wider community. List examples of Financial Awareness Development in the town e.g. breakfast briefings, seminars, training, guest speakers, BREXIT, developing business plans etc.
Appendix 2


Judging criteria for Bank of Ireland’s National Enterprise Town Awards 2019

(Please read the judging criteria below which may assist your Town when preparing your presentation and itinerary for judging day):

1. The Enterprising Town
  • Extent and range of business activity/business groups
  • Local enterprise initiatives/ events/promotions/marketing
  • Innovation e.g. new technology/social media etc.
  • Social enterprises

2. Attractiveness of town
  • Well maintained public realm areas/active tidy towns
  • Welcome signage and general street signage
  • Attractiveness of business premises
  • Parking and accessibility for all

3. Partnership and reaching out
  • Working with local authority/agencies
  • Joint initiatives between businesses through chamber of commerce, local business group and community
  • Diaspora engagement and twinning
  • Active involvement in public participation processes e.g. town plans/parking plans/public realm proposals, tourism plans, public participation network

4. Town Leadership
  • Representative of business and community organisations
  • Current and future plans
  • Campaigns/managing crises
  • Awareness of USP of town/town vision

5. Overall community support in town
  • Support for local businesses by community
  • Support for key service businesses e.g. post office, credit union, bank, ESB sub- office, local co-op etc.
  • Voluntary, culture, sports, heritage, environment, community etc. organisations
  • Initiatives to help businesses and the wider community make better financial decisions for themselves

6. Inclusion and diversity
  • Gender diversity in entrepreneurship
  • Inclusivity of other cultures
  • Details of initiatives supporting inclusion and diversity
  • Reaching out to disadvantaged international communities

7. Other
  • Recognition awards/town/clubs/individual etc.
  • Local publications/media etc.
  • Unique initiatives
  • Evidence of sustainability

8. Overall Impression
  • This category reflects the judges overall impression of the town based on the full extent of the visit.

Comment: The town need not confine itself solely to the sub- headings of the judging criteria as they are indicative guidelines only for the towns and judges. The judges will require the town to demonstrate innovation, pro-activity, sustainability, partnership, social inclusion, leadership and a sense of energy. The judges will only take into consideration the evidence presented on the day of judging by the town. The judges’ decision will be final.
Appendix 3

Rising Star Award 2019

Please note that this year’s awards will again include the Rising Star Category which will have a top prize of €20,000. This category will focus on towns which have overcome major challenges and can demonstrate how they have achieved this. They should showcase their commitment to helping people and businesses in their town to make better financial decisions AS PART OF THE SUBMISSION. Entries must be specifically nominated in this application form. The town must also be an entry in the overall competition to participate in this award. Details of the award are outlined in the application form

Rising Star Award – 1,000 words (maximum) – application detail

The application must include the following:
  • Details of the town, with key demographics
  • Reason why town should now be considered as Ireland’s Rising Star
  • Previous state of town and current state
  • What key actions were undertaken-give specific initiatives
  • Current and ongoing initiatives and outline of their impact
  • Details of successful partnerships within the town and with supporting bodies, e.g. Local authority
  • Details of how success was measured
  • Details of increased employment/developments/new business in the town and recognition for the town
  • How the award would be spent to promote or improve the town.

Judging of the Rising star:

Towns making submissions to be the Rising Star winner 2019 will be shortlisted on the basis of their submission. Shortlisted towns will receive a separate one and a half hour visit by a panel of judges.
1. Purpose of Competition?
The competition aims to promote enterprise by bringing business and community groups together, in each town, to showcase the spirit of enterprise in their local area.
2. Why is Bank of Ireland launching this competition?
Bank of Ireland is the country’s largest lender and committed to helping customers achieve their business ambitions. Bank of Ireland recognises that SME’s, Start-Ups and Community Organisations working together are a core part of the country’s success.
3. Is this just a sales promotion for the bank?
This is not a sales promotion for Bank of Ireland. This competition is the Bank’s way of recognising the efforts being made by businesses and local communities to promote and grow their towns and become economically sustainable.
4. What is the local council’s role in the competition?
The competition is held in collaboration with local authorities.
5. How are the towns chosen for the competition?
The Towns and City villages/Urban areas are generally put forward by the relevant local authority. There is an option to recommend your area via https://businessbanking.bankofireland.com/campaigns/enterprise-town-awards and anywhere nominated in this manner will be considered for entry.
6. How many entries are allowed from each county or city council area?
There is no limit on the number of entries per county or city council area.
7. Why is the competition called Bank of Ireland National Enterprise Town Awards when City areas and villages can also participate?
Every city has urban areas and urban villages that operate as a town in their own right and have distinct identities, local business and residential communities. The definition of a town for the purpose of these awards includes City Villages and Urban areas.
8. Who are the judges?
The names of the judges and their bios will be made known to the towns organising committee prior to judging.

9. What is the format of the judging?
Each town will be visited by the judging panel for a three hour session which it is recommended includes:
  • 30 minutes presentation by the town
  • 30 minutes question and answer session
  • 20 minutes to meet people socially
  • 80 minutes to visit and view key initiatives selected by the organising committee
  • 20 minutes concluding comments and wrap up
10. What if our town exceeds three hours?
The maximum time for the visit is three hours and the judges will expect towns to adhere to this timeframe and schedule the visit accordingly.
11. What are the judging criteria?
The judging criteria are outlined on the application form.
12. How does a town enter the competition?
See no. 5 above. Once selected, the town to submit application form through https://businessbanking.bankofireland.com/campaigns/enterprise-town-awards
13. Where do I submit my application?
Applications are submitted online through https://businessbanking.bankofireland.com/campaigns/enterprise-town-awards
14. There is no Bank of Ireland in my town? Can it enter?
Yes. This competition is open to all towns and City villages/Urban areas in the Republic of Ireland irrespective of whether there is a Bank of Ireland branch.
15. Who should I talk to?
Nearest Bank of Ireland Branch OR List of Bank of Ireland Head of Counties (contact details after these Q&A’s.)
16. What are the various categories?
  • Small <2,000
  • Small/Medium 2,001-5,000
  • Medium 5,001-12,000
  • Large over 12, 000
  • Cities urban villages/areas (confined to cities)
  • Rising Star Overall town based

17. What are the prizes?
18. Is the overall national winner prize on top of Regional and category winner’s prize?
€33,000 is the total prizemoney for the overall winner (Regional Category winner €3,000, National Category Winner €10,000 & overall winner €20,000).
19. What are the Town Initiatives of the Year Awards?
These are special cash awards out of a total fund of €21,000 (3 cash prizes of €5,000 each and 3 cash prizes of €2,000) made at the discretion of the judges to projects/initiatives they discover on their judging journey which they believe would benefit from this award.
20. Who is the prize paid to?
The nominated Organisation as specified in the application form.
21. Are there any restrictions on how the prize money can be spent?
This is at the discretion of the winning town. However, during their visit, the Judging Panel will ask the nominated organisation what they would spend the money on.
22. When are the winners announced?
The winners will be announced at the awards night which will be held in (venue tbc), on 5th December 2019.
23. Apart from the cash prize, how is the town acknowledged?
Each Category winner will receive a trophy. The overall winner will receive trophy and be crowned 'Bank of Ireland National Enterprise Town Awards - Overall Winner 2019’
24. Will there be positive publicity by the bank for the towns?
Press releases will be issued to local and national media and the town will feature in future promotion of the awards.
25. Can the judges’ decision be appealed?
The judges’ decision is final and cannot be appealed.
26. Can the entries receive feedback on the judges’ visit and will marks be available?
If requested, an overview of the judges’ reflections on their visit will be made available. The judges’ marks are not available.
27. What is the Rising Star Category?
In the National Enterprise Towns Awards 2019, there will again be a Rising Star category with a prize of €20,000 awarded to the winner. This category will focus on towns which have overcome major challenges and can demonstrate how they have achieved this. Entries must be specifically nominated in this application form. The town must also be an entry in the overall competition to participate in this award. Details of the award are outlined in the application form
The application must include the following;
  • Details of the town, with key demographics
  • Reason why town should now be considered as Ireland’s rising star
  • Previous state of town and current state
  • What key actions were undertaken-give specific initiatives
  • Current and ongoing initiatives and outline of their impact
  • Details of successful partnerships within town and with supporting bodies, e.g. Local authority
  • Details of how success was measured
  • Details of increased employment/developments/new business in the town and recognition for the town
  • How the award would be spent to promote or improve the town.
A separate judging panel from the main competition will be established. Applications will initially be assessed based solely on the documentation submitted and a number of entries will be shortlisted and visited by the judging panel.
The winner will be announced and presented at the National Enterprise Towns Awards night.
This webform is now closed.