Athboy Convent Community Centre

Renovation works underway at Athboy Community Centre

The renovation project to upgrade and improve Athboy Convent Community Centre, has commenced.

Last September, the centre was allocated €299,000 under the Community Centre Investment Fund for major investment works.

Cllr David Gilroy said works would include the replacing of the gym roof, increasing accessibility such as wheelchair accessibility, and the upgrading of some connecting rooms.

"70,000 people come through this community centre a year with 30 groups who use it regularly. This renovation plans to keep the centre in good condition for the next 30 years."

He added: "Lot's of fundraising has gone into this community centre over the years. The gym was first fundraised for back in the 70s/80s when the community rallied together to build it.

"Overtime leaks have become an issue, not only causing danger of the roof falling in but also damaging the wooden flooring in the gym which meant that clubs, such as the badminton club, would be unable to use it when slippery.

"There are also issues of insulation. It costs a lot to heat the space, so these upgrades are badly needed for the centre.

"Similarly to how this facility was built back in the 80s for the future generations, we are upgrading and improving it for the next cohort of young people."

Cllr Gilroy is a member of the voluntary group, the Athboy Development Forum, who manage the Convent Community Centre, St James' Hall and other new groups that benefit the community of Athboy. He mentioned how staying as local as possible is at the heart of this project: "As well as this renovation being a fantastic thing itself, it is also great that local businesses are involved in the work.

"Our main contractor is Kercon Construction, a building and civil engineering company based in Kells and our scaffolder is Trevor Wallace of Wallace Scaffolding based in Navan.

"This is something we (Development Forum) are very proud of. This means we can keep money local and it is ultimately better for the environment and climate as we're reducing transport."

The Athboy Development Forum would like to thank the surrounding community for their ongoing support over the years to "keep the lights on".