Mountbellew Ambers win big at Active Retirement bowls competition

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The 2022 Active Retirement Ireland national indoor mats bowling competition in Killarney. (Front) Mountbellew Ambers (Co. Galway) team member Mary Rooney and (back) Cnoc Buí (Co. Waterford) team skip Shay Arthur compete in the final, while Comeragh’s (Co. Waterford) team skip Maureen Widger looks on. Photo: Don MacMonagle

Members of the Mountbellew Ambers Active Retirement bowls team have taken home one of the top prizes at the 2022 Active Retirement Ireland national indoor mats bowling competition.

Mountbellew Ambers team members Mary Rooney, Noreen Gayle, Dominic Rooney and team skip Mattie Donnellan were presented with the 2022 large bowls plate by the national president of Active Retirement Ireland Anne Drury and CEO Maureen Kavanagh.

Over three days, 57 Active Retirement teams from across the country competed in the competition this week, which has been held every year since 2010, except 2020 and 2021 when it was suspended due to the pandemic.

Speaking at the presentation, Active Retirement Ireland CEO Maureen Kavanagh congratulated Mountbellew Ambers on their success.

She said that they have met strong competition from many talented teams over the past few days to emerge the winners of the 2022 large bowls plate.

“This year’s National Bowls Competition is of extra special significance as it indicates that older people are taking charge of their lives again post-pandemic,” said Ms Kavanagh.

“It showcases the resilience of older people as they come back to volunteering, and to resuming an active and social lifestyle after two years of lockdown.

“The 230 bowlers who competed for the Cup this week, our members in attendance and our volunteers who helped with the event, epitomise the absolute determination of older people not to be left behind or left out of life.

“We are grateful for the generous support of our event host, the Gleneagle Hotel, for making this event possible for so many of our members and for their recognition of the contribution that older people make.”

In 2019, before the Covid-19 pandemic, Active Retirement Ireland had 550 Active Retirement Associations comprising some 25,000 members.

Post-pandemic, current figures show that 81% of ARAs have resumed activities and 18,500 members (74%) have returned to their ARAs.