Project Closure and Exit

Archive 2007-13 ERDF Programme Material


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Record keeping is an important consideration in the delivery and closure of ERDF projects and all projects should have document retention policies and plans. Projects can still be subject to audit 3 years after the end of the Programme (currently estimated to be at least 31st December 2025). Failure to produce evidence can result in penalties. For partnership projects, the grant recipient or lead applicant is responsible for the audit trail and must ensure that partners keep the appropriate records.

There are specific requirements for projects operating under a State Aid scheme. These can be found via the National ERDF Handbook and State Aid guidelines here.

Grant recipients should keep all documents relating to the ERDF project. An example list can be found in the National Handbook along with an explanation of ‘the economic life of assets’. Prior to the destruction of documents premission should be sought from the Managing Authority.

Project closure should also include ‘lessons learnt reports’ produced for the project sponsor organisation and partners, as well as ensuring the post project monitoring / reviews are put in place and orderly archiving project documents. Projects must remain compliant with ERDF publicity requirements e.g. plaques, billboards etc.

Developing the exit strategy plan:
* Maintain project planning
* Use milestones; track risks
* Monitor and report

Develop forward planning strategies for continuation of activities:
* Transfering / handling over tangible assets/knowledge
* Preparing plans for follow on project based on evidence of emerging needs

Ensure all formal reporting is in place and Project Board minutes are produced and circulated. Ensure all records are maintained in line with (a) fund holder’s requirements and (b) organisation audit requirements.