New pitch in the works for Connemara Rugby Club

Galway Daily sport Cliodhna Moloney Rugby Player of the Year

Connemara Rugby Club are awaiting a decision on whether they can go ahead with plans to install a new pitch.

The rugby club have submitted a planning application for a new playing pitch at Monastery Field in Ardbear, Clifden.

The land for the proposed pitch is already owned by the club having been recently purchased.


Connemara Rugby Club has been around since 1973, and playing at the current grounds since 1981.

The club already has an existing pitch and changing rooms at Monastery Field, and recently acquired 9.8 acres to the east for development.

According to the application the emergence of mini-rugby and the massive growth in popularity of the sport with women has put strain on existing infrastructure.

On top of the pitch contained in this application, Connemara Rugby Club’s masterplan for the site includes facilities for football, tennis, and basketball, as well as a running path.

The undeveloped land the club bought is currently used for grazing purposes.

A submission by the Department of Culture, Heritage, and the Gaeltacht noted that the proposed development is adjacent to the Connemara Bog Complex Special Area of Conservation.

The department asked the council to ensure that any planning permission would not negatively impact protected habitats within the SAC.

To mitigate any potential impact to the habitat at the nearby Salt Lake, it’s proposed that a triple line of willows along with birch or alder will be planted along the lakeshore to shield it.

A decision on whether to allow the rugby club to go ahead with the development is due from the county council by December 12.