Galway’s Strongest Team

On 19 July, the Judges Visited Woodquay Rowing Club, Co. Galway

The judges were greeted with a warm reception at the Galway Rowing Club in Woodquay, Co. Galway. They were treated to a detailed presentation about the club and its role in the community. It provides a place for locals to socialise and train with annual events and competitions.

The judges were given a tour of the clubhouse where the members meet. It is something of a social hub for the community, providing the space for events. Weddings are a popular event to take place in the clubhouse, as Sarah Curran explains:

We had our wedding reception in the rowing club and it was the most amazing venue and an absolute credit to everyone involved.


To The Waters… And The Wild!

One of the highlights was to see the rowers in action!  How they zoomed and spliced through the water, impressing the judges and the crowd who had gathered.  The rowing display was a reminder of the benefits that exercise and in particular, team sports brings to local communities.


In conversation with the local people, the judges learnt of the issues that the clubhouse has had in recent years. Lack of funding and old age had brought the Galway Rowing Club into some disrepair. However the community has stepped in to support the building and a new roof will soon be going under construction. This is a testament to the important bearing it has on the community.
The judges left, inspired by the determination of the community surrounding the Galway Rowing Club and the speed of the rowing teams!


For more information, visit the Woodquay Rowing Club Facebook.

Team Spirit in Clarisford Park, Co. Clare

clarisford park image 1

On 17 July the Judges Visited Clarisford Park, Co. Clare

Clarisford Park is located on the banks of the River Shannon on the outskirts of Killaloe, Co. Clare. It serves the recreational needs of Killaloe, Co. Clare/Ballina, Co. Tipperary and the wider communities.

According to the official website, Clarisford Park is designed to:

Provide a positive impact to the community by bringing events to the area, generating income and job creation in the local community.

The park boasts many features, including:

  • Floodlit playing fields
  • Training pitches
  • 1k running/walking trail
  • Community park
  • An intergenerational sports hall that is currently in construction


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Clarisford Park is a pillar of the community, and organisers stressed the importance of their three core values:

  • Sport & Recreation
  • Quality of Life
  • Collaboration & Partnership

Wonderful Team Spirit

The judges were given a tour of the new sports facility, and several local clubs were present to demonstrate how they had benefited from the facility.  These groups included:

  • Killaloe Scouts
  • Ballina Killaloe Rugby Football Club
  • Lough Derg Football Club

clarisford park image 3


For more information, visit the Clarisford Park website.




And the (Green) Oscar Goes to….

June 25th last saw the judges visit and adjudicate in Cloughjordan

Sponsored by Tipperary County Council and hosted by the Cloughjordan Community Development Committee, the 2014 entry was a whole community event under the `Eco-Community Initiative` banner and for the first time in the competition, this year Cloughjordan was representing the entire county of Tipperary!


On the morning in Cloughjordan, the judges were guided through a very full schedule. Beginning in the eco-neighbourhood, they were given an introduction to the Eco-Village Project, met with cob self-builders on site, were guided through the workings of the community`s district heating plant, visited the community polytunnel and allotments area and learned more about the Research, Education and Demonstration garden. Following this the judges met with members of Cloughjordan Scouts Troop at their Scout shed and allotment space before moving on to meet with the growers and EVS volunteers from Cloughjordan Community Farm. Next up was a visit to the `Master Composting` education and training space and then it was into the WeCreate Enterprise Centre for a look at the FabLab machines and operations there. After visiting the Cloughjordan Woodfired Bakery, the judges then made their way back up to Main Street, meeting with the interns from the CCDC`s ,`Cloughjordan Mapping Project`on route.

Presentation of local craft products to Judging Team

On Main Street, the judges visited a number of local businesses, including a visit to see the ceramic art and pottery at the Black Studio. After the willow sculpture studio, there was a visit to Cloughjordan`s very own craft butcher and independent abattoir.

Then following a visit to The Makery craft centre on lower Main Street the judges crossed the road to the Thomas McDonagh Heritage Centre for the final Pride Of Place presentations. In the centre, pupils from St. Michael`s National School and The Cloughjordan Number 1 National School presented on their schools Green Flags initiatives and their respective `Schools Garden Projects`.


The judges were shown a short slideshow on other projects of interest in the wider Cloughjordan area that couldn`t be visited on the morning, i.e., the Cloughjordan/Scohaboy Raised Bog Restoration LIFE Project and the Knockanacree Community Woodlands Trails Project. Before leaving, the judges received a tour of the heritage centre and it`s exhibits and met with representatives from a wide number of local community groups and organisations. In closing, a special presentation was made by a pupil from each school to the judges of samples of local arts and craft pieces and copies of local heritage publications.


The judges said that they felt

very pleased with the visit and thought the Cloughjordan entry was excellent with a great sense of professionalism, commitment, innovation and pride demonstrated by the group

Want to find out more or arrange a visit to Cloughjordan Village? Visit the Cloughjordan Community Development site, or the official Cloughjordan Eco Village website.