Box­ing club win fight for new home

Fingal Independent - - NEWS - John MAN­NING

THE long fight to se­cure a new and im­proved home for Swords Box­ing Club has fi­nally ended with the of­fi­cial open­ing of the club’s new base at the re­vamped Slu­agh Hall in Swords which will also be used by Fin­gal­lian’s GAA Club who are neigh­bours of the build­ing.

Slu­agh Hall, lo­cated be­side Fin­gal­lians GAA Club in Swords, has been re-opened by the Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Dar­ragh But­ler.

Slu­agh Hall which was opened for the first time in 1938 by Ea­mon de Valera was one of a num­ber of pur­pose built mil­i­tary fa­cil­i­ties opened in the 1930s. The Hall served a mil­i­tary use as the home of the Lo­cal De­fence Force and FCA for 75 years un­til its clo­sure in 2013 due to the re-or­gan­i­sa­tion of the Re­serve De­fence Forces na­tion­ally.

At that time, Fingal County Coun­cil iden­ti­fied the op­por­tu­nity to re­de­velop the hall for use by the peo­ple of Swords and ac­quired Slu­agh Hall from the De­part­ment of De­fence in Jan­uary 2014.

Fingal County Coun­cil en­gaged with Fin­gal­lians GAA Club and Swords Box­ing Club and came up with a plan to con­vert the fa­cil­ity into a home for two of Sword’s prom­i­nent sports namely Gaelic games and box­ing. It was de­cided to di­vide the hall into two sep­a­rate parts to max­imise the po­ten­tial of the build­ing as a fa­cil­ity that could be used by both clubs to de­velop their re­spec­tive sports.

Speak­ing at the hall’s open­ing, Fingal’s Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Paul Reid thanked the two clubs for their sup­port of the Slu­agh Hall project and the level of co-op­er­a­tion they showed to Fingal County Coun­cil dur­ing the many stages in­volved in de­liv­er­ing the project. He said: ‘ Your ef­forts in en­cour­ag­ing par­tic­i­pa­tion in sport, par­tic­u­larly among our younger cit­i­zens are very much to your credit and are some­thing the Coun­cil sup­ports fully. This re­fur­bished Hall stands as a great ex­am­ple of Fingal County Coun­cil’s work in breath­ing new life back into prop­er­ties that come into the coun­cil’s own­er­ship for use by the lo­cal com­mu­nity.’

The Fingal Mayor added: ‘ There has long been a strong tra­di­tion of vol­un­tary mil­i­tary ser­vice in the area of Fingal, not least of which was the par­tic­i­pa­tion of men from the area in the 1916 Ris­ing, both in the city and ru­ral ar­eas across the county.

‘ Through­out the years Slu­agh Hall was recog­nised for vol­un­teer­ing. It is then most fit­ting that this spirit of vol­un­teer­ing will con­tinue through the en­deav­ours of Fin­gal­lians GAA Club and the Swords Box­ing Club. I wish Fin­gal­lians and the Swords Box­ing Club many happy years in their new homes here in Slu­agh Hall and thank you for bring­ing life back to this old build­ing.’ Swords Box­ing Club have pur­sued a new home for a num­ber of years now, ea­ger to find a new per­ma­nent base with all the fa­cil­i­ties it needs to de­velop the grow­ing club.

Mem­bers of Fin­gal­lians GAA Club and Swords Box­ing Club at the open­ing of the new shared fa­cil­i­ties for Swords Box­ing Club & Fin­gal­lians GAA Club.

Pic­tured at the open­ing of the new shared fa­cil­i­ties for Swords Box­ing Club & Fin­gal­lians GAA Club is Tommy Clarke, Chair­man Swords Box­ing Club, Cllr. Dar­ragh But­ler, Mayor of Fingal, Brendan McGrath, Vicechair­man Fin­gal­lians GAA & Derek McKit­trick, Chair­man Fin­gal­lians Adult Games.

Pic­tured at the open­ing of the new shared fa­cil­i­ties for Cllr Paul Mul­ville, Dar­ragh O’Brien TD, Paul Reid Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Fingal CoCo, Dar­ragh But­ler, Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Anne De­vitt Cllr Philip Ly­nam, and Cllr David O’Con­nor.

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