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Club Refurbishment Sligo RFC in association with Sligo Leader Partnership, The Tús initiative and the Department of Social Protection

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Phil Hogan while in Sligo recently visited Hamilton Park to see for himself the ongoing works being carried out by Sligo Leader Partnership and the Tús initiative in conjunction with Sligo RFC.

The project involves labourers provided by Sligo Leader Partnership under the Tús initiative and the Department of Social Protection. Sligo RFC provide all of the materials and the labour is carried out by the Tús initiative workers.

The Minister was accompanied by Deputy Tony McLoughlin who is a regular supporter of Sligo RFC for the AIL games. Also in attendance were Councillor Hubert Keaney and many members of Sligo Leader Partnership and Tús including Chairman of the Sligo Leader Board Tom McGetrick, CEO Chris Gonley, Paul Tolan, Tús Project Leader for the Sligo RFC works Mark Burns, Tús workers, Club President Brian Mullan, Club Chairman Rory Raftery, many members and invited guests.
The Minister was given a guided tour of the building by Club Chairman Rory Raftery where he witnessed first hand the quality of the work that has been carried out to date on the project. He was shown photos of the building as it stood before the works commenced.

After some time speaking with the members the visiting party were given a short presentation on the project by Club Chairman Rory Raftery. Rory thanked The Minister and Deputy McLoughlin for their support to the Club, he also thanked Sligo Leader, Project Leader Mark Burns and the workers on the Tús project for their hard work over the last six months at the Club. Rory explained how the support that the Club has received has given the Club members a renewed sense of pride in the Clubhouse and grounds and that the project has encouraged the Club to find the funds to keep the project going and to undertake further works.
Rory mentioned that this project is part of a six phase plan for the overall re-development of the facilities at Strandhill, the next phase of which is the development of a 3,750 square metre all- weather training facility on the centre ground between the two playing fields at Hamilton Park. The all-weather facility is central to the Club’s plans to bring its circa 400 juvenile and youth players back to Strandhill as they are currently renting facilities for training elsewhere. The all- weather facility is the subject of a current Sports Capital funding application, word on which is expected in September.
Minister Phil Hogan spoke to the gathering and said how glad he was to see how well the project has worked by bringing Sligo Leader, Tús and Sligo Rugby Club together to improve the building for the Club and the wider community.

Sligo Leader CEO Chris Gonley spoke and praised the manner in which Sligo Rugby Club had embraced both the project itself and the workers on the project. He spoke about the importance of the continuance of such projects for the local community.
Just before the Minister departed he was given a brief tour of the Club grounds by Chairman Rory Raftery and shown the site for the much needed all-weather training facility.
The Club would like to extend its sincere thanks to Michael and Mary O’Hehir (O’Hehir’s Bakery) for providing support on the day with tea, coffee and canapés.