LIMERICK Aontú representative Sarah Beasley has started a campaign to get a roof installed over the handball alleys in St Mary’s Park.
According to Ms Beasley, children and teenagers in the local community are in such desperate need of positive activities that a fully-covered alley, safe and dry from the elements, will have a tangible positive benefit.
“We are conscious that this proposal is a big budget item but this Regeneration area is already losing so much, it desperately needs more positive inputs into the community. There are houses being knocked left, right and centre, Garda operations all over the place. We have to start putting energy and the promised investment back into these communities, otherwise they will have no reason to prosper,” she told the Limerick Post.
Aontú was recently approached by a number of residents who directly requested that a roof be placed on the alley to allow kids to avail of a space to play on wet days.
“The alley is currently being used by unsavoury characters who take recreational drugs within its walls. The children are unable to play ball as needles and drug paraphernalia are strewn around the place,” Ms Beasley claimed.
“Handball has a strong tradition in the community. It’s a generational heritage amongst the community, locals do not want to see the game die in St Mary’s Park on their watch.
“In May 2022 two funding streams released by the Government as part of the ‘Rural Development Investment Programme’ were beneficial to Handball Clubs, unfortunately as no formal club existed in St Mary’s, Aontú were unable to tap into that source.
“We hope that council officials will be able to use their knowledge of similar schemes to help in this instance,” she concluded.