Wicklow Sports & Recreation Partnership Launches Arklow Sports Hub

Wicklow Sports & Recreation Partnership has launched Arklow Sports Hub at Coral Leisure Centre in Arklow.  The Hub, which was launched last Wednesday (May 26th), will be a centre for recreation and physical activity for the area.

This is part of an investment of over €150,000 in physical activity equipment, programmes and training and education in the area over the next five years.  The project being rolled out by Wicklow Sports & Recreation Partnership, is supported by Sport Ireland as part of their Community Sports Hub initiative and funded through dormant accounts. 

It will host education and training opportunities from Safeguarding, disability inclusion and first aid training to more sport’s specific education courses.  Aisling Hubbard, Coordinator, Wicklow Sports & Recreation partnership, said this investment was very “timely with the development of a public realm plan and the huge potential the entire site holds for the community.”

Irish International Soccer Star Stephanie Roche at the launch of the Arklow Sports Hub

Mr Eamonn Whelan, Chairperson, Wicklow Sports & Recreation Partnership, highlighted what a critical time for the community this is at the launch.  “The significant funding that has been allocated over the next five years to Arklow in the form of capital and community investment will help the recovery of sport in the area, particularly in these challenging times. COVID-19 has had a catastrophic effect on our sporting organisations and participation in sport and recreation. Despite these challenges and uncertainties, we believe there is an enormous opportunity to reinforce the importance of sport and physical activity in reopening our society and developing a happier and healthier community.”

Cathaoirleach of Wicklow County Council, Cllr Pat Kennedy, thanked Sport Ireland for their continued “investment in sport in the county” and paid tribute to “the significant benefit sport and physical activity has had on the community during the recent pandemic.” 

Cllr Sylvester Bourke, Cathaoirleach Arklow Municipal District, said: “We are delighted to see the new Community Sports Hub coming to Arklow.    Arklow Municipal District is committed to developing an overall public realm plan for the area, and to ensure the future of the area as a public amenity space for the town and its environs”. 

Chief Executive of Wicklow County Council, Frank Curran and Aisling Hubbard, Coordinator of Wicklow Sports and Recreation Partnership, thanked Sport Ireland for the significant investment in the Arklow Sports Hub.  Mr Curran reinforced the importance “sport and physical activity opportunities have played in maintaining the physical and mental health of people during the COVID pandemic” and was looking forward to the future development of the Arklow sports hub. 

Jamie Geraghty of ‘Bar Monkey’ gave a demonstration of the Calisthenics equipment that is to be installed in the coming weeks.  As part of the Sports Hub courses on calisthenics will be provided to schools in the area alongside a coach education programme.  Jamie said he was “delighted that Wicklow is one of the first sites to combine the installation of equipment with a schools training programme and educating the community on how to use the equipment.”  

International Soccer players Aine O’Gorman and Stephanie Roche gave a demonstration of the newly installed Teqball table.  A Teqball Table is a uniquely designed curved table on which five sports can be played.  The football-based sport of Teqball is regarded as the fastest growing sport in the world with Teqball clubs, leagues and national tournaments taking root at a phenomenal rate. 

Philip Fitzgerald noted “Teqball tables have been embraced by so many high-profile clubs, national sports associations and even Olympic Councils, the beauty of this innovative table is the fun it generates for almost everyone playing on it and the improvement in coordination and touch & technique that is generated by playing Teq Sports.”

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