Editorial – Summer 2003

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A Year of Opportunities and Openings for Athenry.

Despite the worrying news about Athenry Post Office, Mellows College and Athenry FCA, this has been an exciting period for Athenry. A range of new developments and opportunities demonstrate a bright future for the town and community.

The year started on a high with the official launch of the “Flying Fortress Athenry” which celebrated the 60th anniversary of an American B17 bomber which was forced to land at Mellows College. The forthcoming book – “Eagles over Athenry” and a permanent exhibition of memorabilia in the Heritage Centre, of this important event will hopefully open the “tourist gates” of Athenry to many visitors from the USA.

The twinning of Athenry with Quimperlé in France will offer opportunities for social and cultural exchange for students and adults alike. The town-twinning ceremony in Athenry Castle started a wonderful week of activities that many of you enjoyed.

The opening of Athenry Cancer Care, based in the Social Services Centre, is an important and most welcome addition to the Parish voluntary service. The Committee, together with all its supporters, deserves great credit and thanks for their work in developing this wonderful initiative.

Also to be housed in the Social Services Centre, the Athenry Community IT Centre will be available to people of all ages who are interested in learning with computers in a relaxed and friendly environment. The Centre will be run by Athenry ADC and for further information, or to register interest, ring the office on 091 845422.

Teenagers now have a new place in which to let their hair down, foliowing the launch of the No Name Club in June The Club, which is based in the Castlegate Hotel, provides a range of recreational activities in an alcohol-free environment.

Another new, much needed sporting and keep-fit resource is scheduled to be available in the autumn when Athenry Soccer Club pians to open its new Club House and Gymnasium.

Galway East Tourism is a recently launched tourism enterprise, with the remit of promoting the region, including Athenry, and is located in the Old Church Street offices of Galway Rural Development.

The commencement of a much needed Heritage Plan for Athenry is envisaged with the submission from a combined organisations of local community groups to the new 5 year heritage plan for Co. Galway.

The “West-on Track” railway corridor campaign is gaining momentum – this will be a major boost for the west of Ireland. Here in Athenry, we welcome the many new road signs recently erected by Galway Co. Co., while the last phase of the town’s one way traffic system is about to be put in place.

The refurbishment of our Parish Church is continuing apace, and the new roof should be in place by the time you read this. Fundraising is ongoing, and this offers a wonderful opportunity to citizens of the Parish to contribute to the renewal of the Church.

The newly published “Turoe & Athenry: ancient Capitals of Ireland” by Fr. Tom O’Connor of Kiltulla brings a new perspective to our history and presents an exciting new platform for discussion.

Athenry ADC is delighted to be part of all this and to facilitate many of these flagship projects. As the year moves from summer into autumn, we can reflect on a period of positive growth and development in the Athenry area. Ours is a thriving, vibrant community, rich in ideas, creativity and opportunity. It is up to us all to ensure that we continue like this.

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About this record

Written by Cáit Curran

Published here 01 Jan 2024 and originally published Summer 2003

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