independent

Friday 19 September 2014

'Brilliant' reaction to bustling centre

John Manning

Published 17/09/2013 | 15:45

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Sonya Dunne Johnson and Annemarie Ireland at the Malahide Musical and Drama Society’s open night in the new Malahide Parish Centre.

MALAHIDE'S new €5 million parish centre at St Sylvester's Church is up and running and hoping to become the very centre of community life in the village.

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MALAHIDE'S new €5 million parish centre at St Sylvester's Church is up and running and hoping to become the very centre of community life in the village.

The brand new centre has opened its doors and staged its first major event as the good people of Malahide Musical Society used the venue to host a recent open night aimed at recruiting new members to the group.

The centre's two halls, with a capacity of 90 people each, as well as four modern meeting rooms are available now and ready to host both commercial and community events and meetings.

The development is largely down to the overwhelming generosity of the late, and very great, Micheal Gaffney who left in excess of €3 million to the project.

In recognition of his contribution, the hall on the ground floor, which is a refurbishment of the old parish hall, has been named 'Gaffney Hall' and will carry his name on down through the ages.

At the helm of the new centre is manager, Sharon O'Sullivan, who only has to walk to work now, living around the corner from the new centre in Malahide.

'We can't believe the response to the centre since we opened. We haven't had to go out and look for people to use it and already we have a huge variety of activities going on in the building.

'The reaction has really been brilliant and there is a just a lovely feeling in the building. Everyone says there is a lovely atmosphere in the building and it is very bright.

It has a great connection with the church too because the wall of the church is the wall of the centre,' Sharon told the Fingal Independent.

Architect, Sean Harrington has done a superb job on the building and the new centre is a welcome addition to community facilities in the village of Malahide.

There is already a bewildering number of classes on offer at the centre from a theatre stage school to Irish dancing and even 'pregnancy yoga'.

An official opening is planned for late October or early November when the centre also hopes to host an open day for the whole community to come in and have a look at the new facilities.

Fingal Independent

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