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Armagh GAA unveil plan for new £2.5m County facility

Thursday, 10 August 2017

THE GAA community in Armagh has wholeheartedly welcomed plans for a £2.5m county training facility to be established in Portadown.

The plans are part of the a new three-year vision launched by Armagh GAA, entitled Is Féidir Linn le Chéile (Together We Can), that proposes a range of "ambitious plans" to improve infrastructure, facilities as well as coaching practices between now and 2020.

It's proposed that the new state-of-the-art facility will be based at St Malachy's Hurling Club on the Moy Road, where the existing provisions will undergo a revamp to include a 20-acre site that will boast three full-sized floodlit grass pitches, spectator stand, ball wall and gym with adjoining changing facilities. Clubs gave their backing to the project at the board's latest County Committee meeting held last week.

Paul McArdle, Armagh GAA Chairman, said; "The stated outcomes in our Strategic Plan are ambitious, but achievable and are underpinned by our focused vision for Armagh. I am confident that together we can deliver for Armagh GAA as a whole.

"We have a vision of where we need to be and this is strengthened by the great family of clubs, members and officers who continually support our County and will assist in the implementation of this plan over the next three years.

"We have identified a number of key themes, one of which is improving our infrastructure and facilities, and this is reinforced by plans to develop a new County Training Facility strategically located in Portadown".

Meanwhile, Padraig Haughey, Armagh GAA Development Officer, added; "This £2.5m investment will provide facilities which will cater for all our County teams and academy squads, and provide a further option for competitive club games across all codes. The new 20-acre facility will include three-full size floodlit grass pitches, spectator stand, ball wall and gym with adjoining changing facilities.

I am delighted that our clubs endorsed the plans for the new facility at the County Committee meeting [last] Tuesday night." The latest strategic plan comes nearly a decade after the publication of Armagh GAA's 'Aibiú an Úllghoirt' ('Ripening the Orchard'), which was released in 2008.

The County Board explained this latest three-year plan - which was produced in consultation with clubs, County Committees and other stakeholders - would "draw on the lessons" of its predecessor. "'Is Féidir Linn le Chéile' also aims to foster a healthier connection between Club and County while providing a sustainable framework for the ongoing Gaelic games and culture in Armagh so as to make them more vibrant, attractive and stronger," explained Armagh GAA.

The County Committee has also thanked those who had conducted a review of Aibiú an Úllghoirt; Jarlath Burns, Paul Gribben, Donal McCarthy, Brian Mallon and Mickey Savage, as well as members of the strategic planning sub-committee who helped with the current three-year plan; Gary Farrell, Padraig Haughey, Paul Kelly, Jarlath Burns, Jimmy Magee, Brian Mallon, John McEntee, Kieran McGeeney, Séan Ó Maoilsté and Brian Turbitt.

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