Winner: Shannon Town, Co Clare

Shannon Town in County Clare enjoys many leisure, sporting, social and educational facilities built by an active, vibrant and engaged community. Shannon Leisure Centre is community owned and managed and has completed a major extension in recent years. Wolfe Tones GAA Club has a floodlit astro turf and a refurbished and extended club house. Three soccer clubs and St. Senan’s RFC all have their own pitches. Coiste Comoradh Eirí Amach 1916-2016 commissioned and erected three stone statues outside the Library to commemorate the 1916 Rising. Dúchas na Sionna, Shannon Tidy Towns and Men’s Shed Group are collaborating to restore, preserve and enhance Hastings Farmhouse. A community garden has been created in the surrounding area with trees, raised vegetable beds and a polytunnel which is used for horticultural training for young adults. This activity is linked to the upgraded River Loop Walk, the ongoing development of the Wetlands and the Town Park to deliver enhanced and accessible leisure, learning and historic amenities in Shannon.

Community Contact: Nicola Killeen [email protected]

The judges arrived to an excellent welcome and presentation which demonstrated the huge range of voluntary activities in this town and in particular highlighted the many amenities of the town and the exceptional level of volunteerism. A large number of excellent organisations have been developed through years of collaboration, celebration of success and great people. This is a town that had to establish itself, identify its own leaders and create its own community from a diverse range of people with no longstanding connection to the area. The support from the agencies and inclusivity is very obvious and the judges were really impressed with this large town which operates through the hard work of so many people as one large community.

Runners Up: Buncrana, Co Donegal and Youghal, Co Cork