St. Jarlath’s college in Tuam has been given the green light by the county council to proceed with plans for a new sports facility and pitch.
Planning permission has been granted to the school’s board of management for a full-sized, synthetic grass pitch, with a surrounding track and fencing, along with eight floodlights covering the pitch.
The new pitch is meant to make up for a lack of one suitable for playing matches, as the school currently only has a training pitch.
The school will also build a new sports building/club house complete with changing rooms, a gym, and a multi-purpose room.
The new pitch and sports facility will be built on a green area next to the 10.1ha grounds of St. Jarlath’s college, and will be accessed through the existing road to the school.
“St. Jarlath’s College has a strong sporting tradition, particularly in Gaelic Football. The college is the most successful GAA Colleges Team in Ireland with 12 Hogan cups,” the design statement for the project said.
“The existing playing pitches are suitable for training only. St. Jarlath’s currently have to travel outside of school grounds to play college games.”
The College have GAA representative teams in football and hurling at first year, Juvenile, Junior, and Senior. The school also caters for rugby and soccer teams.”
“The proposed facility will provide for the school to play games on school campus. Modern sports and strength and conditioning is an important part of sports teams preparation. The gym will provide for this.”
“The multi-purpose room will provide for preparation and catering, associated games, and other ancillary activities.”
Plans for the sports facility and pitch include 45 car parking spaces, as well as a full sized bus parking space and 20 bicycle spaces.
“Many of the games will be outside of school hours, therefore there is a requirement for parents of the home team to drop off and collect players. Also a percentage of parents will want to attend the game,” the design statement read.
The county council’s planning inspector said that the facilities would be a “welcome addition” to those that already exist in the area, and would integrate well into the grounds of St. Jarlath’s.
Before any sub-surface work on sight, the board must hire an archaeologist to carry out an assessment of the site, as St Jarlath’s College itself is a protected structure, though this construction is outside of its curtilage.
Planning permission was granted by the county council with a total of twelve standard conditions attached.