The Covid-19 crisis has claimed another sporting victim, after Club Rossie confirmed they have been forced to defer their 'Win a Home in London' fundraiser until the end of the year.
The €100 per ticket draw was due to take place on the second weekend in May. But, in the wake of yesterday's postponement of the Connacht SFC quarter-final clash between London and Roscommon in Ruislip, it has also been deferred.
A statement, issued this morning, confirmed the news.
"At this unprecedented time, Roscommon GAA and Club Rossie have taken the very difficult decision to defer our Win a Home in London competition until the 30th of December 2020 when some level of normality will hopefully have returned for all of us," it began.
"We firstly want to thank those who have supported this competition so far and reassure them that this competition will definitely go ahead.
"However, during this exceptionally difficult time for people in Ireland, the UK and beyond we want nothing to distract from the important task of defeating Covid-19 so we are suspending the promotion and marketing of the apartment in London City Island.
"Secondly, our own volunteer team need to focus on their own loved ones and also their own businesses in the short term as we too are faced with challenges over the coming months.
"Finally, we don't believe we will be able to host a suitable event for the competition on 10 May 2020 due to Covid-19, given Government guidelines in Ireland including guidelines on physical distancing and maximum number of people allowed at public events."
This latest Club Rossie initiative came in the wake of last year's hugely successful 'Win a House in Dublin' draw, which cleared €942,000 in profit for Roscommon GAA.
Today's statement revealed: "A key component of our marketing plan to promote this competition was our presence in London in the weeks leading up to the Roscommon v London GAA match. This match has now being postponed and we don’t have clarity as to when it will be played.
"Since we launched the competition on 10 December 2019, we have sold over 8,560 tickets and we sincerely thank all those who have entered so far. The €856,000 raised is held in a ring-fenced account for this competition which is being independently observed by PWC.
"We are glad to say we have now covered all costs, including the apartment and also marketing costs, and have a surplus generated which ultimately will go towards the redevelopment of Dr Hyde Park and the development of the Dermot Earley Centre of Participation.
"While tickets are still available to purchase on www.winahomeinlondon.com we will pause marketing the competition until the worst of Covid-19 has passed.
"We wish all supporters of Roscommon GAA and all those in Ireland, the UK and in the 30 countries globally who have purchased a ticket entry the very best through these unprecedented times.
"We look forward to normality returning and having a special night on the 30th December when one lucky person will win a luxury, Ballymore developed, apartment in London City Island."