Dungannon United Youth celebrate opening of new community sports hub

A NEW Community Sports Hub has opened at the Dungannon United Youth Stadium grounds following an investment of almost £740K by the Department for Communities (DfC).

The project, led by Mid-Ulster District Council on behalf of Dungannon United Youth and with support from the Dungannon Neighbourhood Renewal Partnership, has created a more fit for purpose shared community facility that will work to enhance and promote health and well-being opportunities for local people.

At the opening event, Arthur Scott, Director for Engaged Communities Group, DfC, said: “The Department is confident that this new facility will offer increased opportunities for participation in sport and physical activity, not only for the young people involved in the Club, but also for members of the local community of all ages, abilities and gender.

“The Hub will provide the community with greater health options, including education, and I would encourage everyone to avail of the new community facilities that this new build will offer to all residents.”

Deputy Chair of the Council, Councillor Clement Cuthbertson, praised the Club’s vision and said: “We now have a truly top class, vibrant and inclusive suite of facilities here which will be enjoyed by the current generation and those who follow.

“All praise to Joe McAree and his team for their vision, ambition and commitment to delivering this hub - and to the Department for Communities and the Neighbourhood Renewal Partnership for recognising how valuable and impactful their investment will be in addressing a sporting and a social need.”

The newly constructed building provides space for four changing rooms, a referee’s room, a physio room, a fitness suite and a new community meeting room with a coffee dock area overlooking the Black Lough, which provides a relaxing backdrop for those using the facility.

Speaking on behalf of Dungannon United Youth Joe McAree commented: “As Club Chairperson of Dungannon United Youth I am absolutely delighted that we have reached another milestone in the history of our club.

“I can remember well when I signed the first lease in 1998, the lease stated that the leasee would spend a minimum of £200,000 upgrading the site.

“That figure was a little scary at the time but I needn’t have worried as we have went on to spend £1.7 million on this site. That was done with the help of grants and a lot of hard work from a lot of volunteers.   

“On this occasion the grant was secured from the Department for Communities with support from the Neighbourhood Renewal Partnership and Mid-Ulster District Council and it goes without saying that our most sincere thanks go to all of them.

“Without these organisations this project would never have happened and I have no doubt that this new Community Sports Hub will help us build on the success we already have achieved. Also we cannot forget the great job O’Hanlon Bros Contractors have done in creating this state of the art building”

Chair of the Neighbourhood Renewal Partnership, Francie Molloy MP commented: “I welcome the conclusion of the new build for Dungannon United Youth and the community around Dungannon. 

“This is a great project and I commend Joe McAree and his team for the work and the vision to deliver this new facility.  This is just one of the many projects which the Coalisland & Dungannon Neighbourhood Renewal Partnership has delivered for the community through funding from Department for Communities.”

The new Community Sport Hub is open from 11am to 10pm Monday to Friday, all day Saturday and all day Sunday. 

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