The Donegal Democrat's coverage of the opening of the Community Centre in Kinlough back in 1975.
Plans are in place to carry out major improvements to the sports grounds in Kinlough which it is hoped will finally leave the village with an amenity that’s suitable to cater for local clubs, schools and a growing population.
A special launch night will be held in Kinlough Community Centre on Saturday evening at which deatils of the fundraising plans for the major new community project will be outlined.
The Kinlough Community Project is hoping to raise €175,000 in order to complete Phase 1 of an exciting new development which will see the replacement of the pitch at Pairc na Meilge. Phase 1 will also include the erection of new ball stop netting and fencing.
The pitch is located adjacent to the Community Centre in Kinlough and the facility has seen an explosion in use over the past number of years. There are now plans to do much more to service the community’s needs.
After Phase 1, it’s planned to redevelop and extend the changing rooms at Pairc na Meilge (Phase 2), and also develop a new stand, extra changing rooms/meeting rooms and a sports hall (Phase 3).
The community secured a grant for €25,500 from the Sports Capital Programme in 2017. The total cost of Phase 1 of the development project is €200,000 which means €175,000 now has to be raised.
A fundraising committee has been formed and they are hoping the local community and those living in the wider Lough Melvin area will row in behind the campaign and lend their support.
One of the members of the new fundraising committee, Katherine Williams, said the time has come to modernise the facilities that are already there.
“It’s a huge task, but it’s something that is now needed,” she said.
“We have to do something because time is moving on and there is now a greater demand than ever before for these facilities.”
The small committee has been meeting once a week since the beginning of the year and they plan to outline all their fundraising plans at Saturday evening’s launch event in the Community Centre.
In a unique venture, donations of €100 are being sought which will allow people to ‘make their mark’ on Pairc na Meilge. Each €100 donation will represent a square of the playing field and will offer a person the chance to record their name, or that of a loved one, along with a townland, on a commemorate plaque.
The full list of names will, once Phase 1 is complete, feature forever in a prominent position at the grounds.
On top of that, the donation of €100 will also allow entry into a special members only draw at Easter 2019 for five prizes of €1,000.
The committee are also seeking different forms of sponsorship from businesses and they are looking forward to working with local business owners.
This week, they received their first business sponsorship. Noel and Martina McGowan from the Spar in Kinlough have contributed €2,000 to the fundraising campaign.
Ms. Williams said the sports facilities in Kinlough are used by a wide range of groups, schools and teams from the village and surrounding areas.
“If you look at the pitch itself, we can’t really go on using a pitch which if it rains, is not playable for two or three days. That means having to go elsewhere to play our games,” she added.
“We have planning permission in place for the new dressing rooms too, but at the minute, that’s further down the road.
“We are concentrating on Phase One for now and while it’s going to take a big effort, we have to do something for our area.”
Saturday night’s meeting starts at 8pm.