Dungannon's new hurling club facilities 'transform the sporting landscape'
HURLING club facilities newly launched in Co Tyrone have been hailed for helping to "transform the sporting landscape".
Dungannon's Eoghan Ruadh Hurling Club has formally opened its new changing facilities and community hall.
It received £390,000 of Stormont funding for the project, which follows an earlier investment of £480,000 for a grass pitch and perimeter walking track at the club grounds.
Tomás Colton, chair of Eoghan Ruadh, said he was "absolutely delighted and honoured" to be involved in the grand opening of the new clubhouse.
"This building, consisting of a community room, two changing rooms, a third female-only changing room, referees' suite and public toilets, has changed the lives of everyone visiting this area," he said.
"Adults and children can now enjoy their sport with changing and shower facilities and the local and visiting communities have a beautiful room for gatherings and refreshments."
The new clubhouse had its official opening on Tuesday night, with Ulster GAA vice-president Ciaran McLaughlin and Tyrone GAA vice-chairman Eunan Lindsay among those in attendance.
As well as club members, players and officials, others attending the launch included Mid Ulster council chairman Martin Kearney, Sinn Féin MP Michelle Gildernew, and members of Naomh Treasa Camogie Club, Dungannon Clarkes and the Dungannon parish.
A community room in the new facility has been named after Manus MacGinty, an assistant treasurer of the club who died earlier this year.
It will be available for use by numerous resident and community groups and organisations in the area.
The funding came from the Department for Communities (DfC), which said the new complex helps "transform the sporting landscape and improve participation in sport".
Speaking at the opening of the facility, DfC community empowerment division deputy director John Ball said: "It is a real pleasure to see the successful completion of this magnificent new building.
"It represents an important new facility for the hurling club to increase participation by complementing its playing pitch and community walking track, also funded by DfC, and will allow those using them to do so in a safe and clean way. The new community room is also available for use by local groups.
"The work here represents the culmination of a lot of effort by Eoghan Ruadh Hurling Club and the department is delighted to have been able to encourage and support their work."