€4.2 million windfall for sporting bodies in the Blarney and Macroom
SPORTING bodies from across the Blarney and Macroom areas are set to benefit from a €4.2 million funding windfall unveiled by the government.
The funding is being made available under the Sports Capital Programme administered by the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport.
The largest single beneficiary within the Blarney/Macroom Municipal District will be Grenagh Parish Field Ltd, which was allocated €95,000.
Company vice-treasurer Dermot Duggan said the money will be used to fund the construction of a synthetic playing pitch for the local community.
"We have had a serious shortage of space in which to accommodate the various sporting clubs within Grenagh, with only one main pitch that is shared between the GAA and local soccer club," said Mr Duggan.
"We identified a need for a new synthetic pitch that will cost in the region of €150,000 to build. We are delighted with this funding, which will go a long way to bringing this ambitious plan to fruition. The remainder of the money will be made up through local fundraising efforts," he added.
Other bodies within the region to benefit from funding under the capital programme will include Macroom GAA (€74,000), Ballincollig RFC (€72,000), Eire Óg GAA (€50,000) and Dripsey GAA (€12,000).
Further west, Timoleague Community Association Ltd received €150,000.
Sinn Fein county councillor Des O'Grady said the programme was aimed at fostering an integrated and planned approach to the development of sporting and recreational facilities across the country.
He said while the funding was most welcome, it was not clear at this stage if the programme would be continued next year.
"I would like to see the government making this an annual process as only 800 of the 2,000 application made this year were successful," said Cllr O'Grady.
"Hopefully, those bodies that were not successful this year will be given the opportunity to apply again next year with a more favourable outcome."