Drumalane/Quayside Close Community Centre Opens After Major Investment
On Monday the 9 April, Drumalane Quayside Close Community Centre was officially opened by Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Councillor Rosin Mulgrew and Mr John Ball, Deputy Director for the Community Empowerment Division, Department for Communities (DfC).
This new Centre represents a total investment of £295,000, which was funded by both the Department of Communities’ Neighbourhood Renewal Programme and the Council. The new Centre is based on the Fathom Line and built on a site adjacent to Quayside Close Sports pitches at the Albert Basin. The completion of this six month project provides much needed sports changing facilities for the adjacent playing fields and will allow the local volunteers to create a new community hub from which they can deliver programmes and activities for local people.
Speaking at the launch Councillor Mulgrew said, “This facility will instil a new sense of hope and empower the Community Association to affect positive change. The Centre will bring great benefits to the area and provide a hub that can build a more cohesive community.”
Mr John Ball added, ‘We see this investment by our Department and the Council as a commitment to tackle deprivation in our most deprived areas, creating new opportunities for local people to improve their life chances. The new Centre will provide a base from which further initiatives through education, employability, health and recreation can be delivered to meet the needs of all members of the community.”
Chairperson of Drumalane Quayside Close Community Association, Mr Gerard Hutchinson said, “My sincere thanks go to both the Council and the Department for Communities for their support in helping to deliver this project. The Centre will breathe new life into our community and we are thankful to everyone who made it possible. It took a long time to get to here but I am proud to be part of such a great team that was determined to see a community centre for our local area. Now what we have is a safe and purpose built facility that will belong to the whole community.”
Mrs Geraldine Merendino, Chairperson of the Neighbourhood Renewal Partnership (NRP) congratulated the Community Association on their achievement. She said, “I wish to pay tribute to the NRP members who have long supported this project and offer my thanks to the Department for Communities for their continued support for this and the other Neighbourhood Renewal projects.
She added, “I want to also thank Newry, Mourne and Down District Council especially the officers within the Active and Healthy Communities Department for giving their full support.”