Category Two: Population Category 300 – 1,000
Winner: Belcarra, Co Mayo
Belcarra has won many community awards at local, national and regional level and is served by various hardworking Voluntary Groups – e.g. Tidy Towns Committee, Community Co-Op, Sports Committee and many more. Belcarra boasts many amenities such as Belcarra Heritage Centre, (under the auspices of the Museums of Mayo), which is a beautifully restored cottage, formerly the scene of a 19th century eviction; a beautiful riverside walk, Carra Caravaning and Camping as well as 186 archaeological sites including souterrains, fulachta fiadh, crannógs, ringforts, burial mounds, churches, childrens burial grounds, castles and standing stones. The Manulla river, a tributary of the river Moy runs through Belcarra, and there are two village enhancement areas adjacent to the river, known as the ‘Common’ and the ‘Fishery Area’. There is also a 3km ‘Riverside Loop Walk’ with two pedestrian bridges en route, which has been developed by the local community in co-operation with local farmers.
The judges were impressed by the group at the helm of this rural community. They have a long and distinguished history having provided a group water scheme, housing for the elderly, social housing, recreational facilities, a riverside walk, a community centre, sports centre…………the list goes on. It is fair to say that community activity is in the DNA of the people!