Thursday, 1 December 2011

Perfect Christmas gift for Thomondgate

“If you want something, you have to get it for yourself.” After years of being overlooked for community funding, these were the words of a delighted and determined Colin McInerney, just one of the committee members who have battled for a sports facility for the forgotten estate of Thomondgate.

With a €10,000 fund secured from Limerick Regeneration, phase one of the new sports park has now begun at the site on the Long Pavement Road. This will include two football pitches and changing facilities for the newly established Northside Legacy FC, Thomondate’s first football club.

Plans are now going into place for phase two, a running track, basketball court, handball alley and dirt bike course could transform this site into one of the best community sporting facilities in the country. The hard work of fundraising and campaigning for the remainder of the near €100,000 needed for such an ambitious project begins for the people involved.

The initial idea for the development has been inspired by the members of the club, who have up until now had to travel every weekend to Southhill to play their home matches. This combined with training in Corbally, it was plain for everyone to see, that there was a home needed for the Legacy in their own area.

“We have been depending on lifts and paying for cabs to bring us to games on a Sunday, this facility is long overdue for this side of town.” said Frankie Daly, another of the core people involved from the start.

Combining these aspirations with the great teamwork of two normally opposing councillors in Sinn Fein’s Maurice Quinlivan and Labour’s Tom Shortt, the plans and dreams have evolved into the fantastic project which has now started.
Both councillors described how community spirits have risen dramatically since this project began and has been so noticeable that the local Gardai have also become involved in helping out.

“I used to get 20 phone calls a week from Thomondgate residents about young guys hanging around with nothing to do and getting into mischief, now because of the club, this has improved.” said Cllr Quinlivan.

It is hoped now that when the pitches are ready in the coming months, the club can expand even further with more teams from the underage level. All involved have very high hopes for the future, and believe that with the other sports being added to the park soon after, this could be the beginning of something very special for the Thomondgate area.

With some determination, community togetherness, help from the Gardai and a good working relationship between two very different political parties, it is inspiring too see what a community can achieve when will is combined with hard work.
Anybody wishing to get involved in this project as a volunteer, player or in some form of sponsorship can contact Colin McInerney at 085-1343504.

No comments:

Post a Comment