St. Ita’s AFC have announced Glenveagh Homes as the club’s official Youth Sponsor for 2022.This major sponsorship will allow the club to invest in sporting equipment, team kits and other equipment to support the continued growth of the club in response to the growth in the size of the surrounding community. St. Ita’s AFC is a football team based in Donabate-Portrane, fielding teams of male and female members, from age 4 upwards. St Ita’s AFC has approximately 700 registered playing members, including nearly 90 coaches, and are fielding 37 teams in league football, and have recently expanded the senior section to include a senior women’s team and an over 35’s men’s team. St Ita’s also works closely with other organisations in the local community and has licence agreements with two local schools (DPETNS and Donabate Community College), as well as the Donabate Special Olympics Club to use the club’s facilities. According to St. Ita’s AFC Chairman Conor Tonra, the Youth Sponsor will be a crucial partner to the club. St Ita’s AFC is currently undergoing a period of rapid growth. The support of Glenveagh Homes is critical for us to develop modern, safe facilities for all of our youngsters. The sponsorship makes Glenveagh Homes the club’s inaugural Youth Sponsor, which will benefit all of the club’s academy, nursery and youth players, including both boys’ and girls’ teams. The sponsorship had already allowed for the investment in new playing jerseys for the teams which will enter league football for the first time in the 2022/3 season. Glenveagh Homes is one of Ireland’s largest homebuilders. Driven by both innovation and a commitment to opening up access to sustainable high-quality homes, Glenveagh is on track to complete 1,400 new homes this year. The company has a longer-term target of delivering over 3,000 units a year from 2024 to communities across Ireland. For more Information, visit glenveagh.ie. According to Cameron McDonnell, Head of Marketing at Glenveagh, this partnership with St. Ita’s AFC is a critical one: Glenveagh has a vital role to play by investing in and supporting local communities where we build.Our community and sponsorship funds have provided invaluable support to local initiatives from grassroots sponsorship to sports-facilities upgrades and other local initiatives close to the heart of our communities and are delighted to support St. Ita’s AFC with the next stage of the club’s development.

In early 2018 a group, who were members of St Sylvesters GAA Club, began cycling together,
participating in sportives and subsequently formed a Cycling Club. Syls CC Malahide was named in
recognition of the historical affiliation of St. Sylvester to the town of Malahide.The aim was to become the best social cycling club in north Dublin. The club affiliated with Cycling Ireland, and our inaugural spin took place in February 2019. The Green became the Club’s designated meeting point. In May 2021 we launched the first successful Couch to 50K programme where new cyclists participated in a fun six-week training activity. This programme combined theory and on the road guided spins. 2022 was a bigger year for the programme, and also marks the beginning of our newest programme, “100k in a day”.Membership growth is accelerating, with 42% women, which reinforces inclusivity and diversity in the club. We are committed to nurturing members in achieving their objectives, regardless of ability level. New members often ask if they will be able to keep up with the group. Syls CC’s has a no drop policy and adjusts the pace to suit the group. The Club provides a range of spins with different distances and average speed during the week. Over the years, club members have participated in various Irish and International events including Women’s Lap of Louth, Ride Dingle, Ring of Beara, Wicklow 200, Ring of Kerry, Mallorca 312 and cycling camps abroad.Cycling is a healthy outdoor activity, and supervised spins can give a greater sense of safety than individual cycling. A key aspect is having fun, which for some might be a challenging hill and for others a leisurely paced cycle for a cup of coffee. The Club’s key metric is active participation. North Dublin has lots of cycling options with a superbcoastline, hills, heritage properties and great scenic rolling roads. Syls CC is open to new members and constantly launching new cycling programmes. If you have any queries or want to connect with the club, email Contact@SylsCC.ie

Éamonn Galldubh, Daire Bracken and Alan Burke made the rafters ring at the launch of The Bleeding Pig Cultural Festival in The Brook in Portrane. They piped, fiddled and sang until the tapping feet couldn’t take any more and took to the floor.The launch was the start of 10 days of our community festival. Thank you to Fingal County Council and all our sponsors.

Cllr Adrian Henchy said recently, “Since my election in 2014 I have campaigned strongly and attended numerous meetings with both the HSE and Fingal County with a view to the preservation, protection and enhancement of the St. Ita’s hospital campus Portrane. One of my very first questions to both Fingal County Council and the HSE when first elected as a local councillor in 2014 was to restore and regenerate the empty houses on Portrane Avenue. Frustratingly progress with this matter over many years has been far too slow but am now finally pleased to confirm that following extensive discussions between the Department of Housing, the HSE and Fingal County Council to reach an agreement which will see the restoration and refurbishment of these 12 homes which will provide much needed homes to twelve families in our constituency. I want to thank the HSE and Fingal County Council who have worked collaboratively with the Minister his Department and I on this matter. Great credit must be also given to the existing residents of Portrane Avenue who have long campaigned for and called for the restoration and regeneration of their neighbouring houses. Together with my colleague Minister O Brien we are determined to tackle the scourge that is housing vacancy. This is very positive news for the proud Village of Portrane with the St. Ita’s hospital campus right at the very heart of Portrane. Hopefully the regeneration of these beautiful family homes along Portrane Avenue will also be a catalyst for future regeneration and reuse of the large scale magnificent Red brick buildings across St. Ita’s. With regard to the provision of future housing in Portrane I have a tabled an upcoming motion on the new Fingal County Council Development plan 2023-2029 for the HSE zoned residential lands to be specifically reserved for the delivery of owner Affordable housing in line with the recent housing initiatives announced by my colleague Minister O Brien and I strongly hope this motion will receive broad support and we will see the delivery of Owner occupied Affordable housing in Portrane as well as Donabate. Also as an update the new National Forensic Mental Health facilities on the St. Ita’s hospital campus Portrane is finally due to become fully operational at some stage in November 2022 The exact opening date cannot be disclosed for Operational reasons.”

The Peninsula Pacers September Walk ended at The Brook for Trad & Pizza to coincide & link up with The Bleeding Pig Cultural Festival! The Peninsula Pacers had a great walk in mid September all around the peninsula. We walked about 13km (some did 15km as they walked back to Donabate - some got the bus just not as reliable at the moment as the feet!). A big welcome & thank you to our new friends from Laytown joined in..We started from The Parish Hall - then pit stop at The Shoreline - then coffee, cake & strawberries at The Carriage - then down to The Lug end of the Burrow - then final resting place The Brook where we joined in with the Bleeding Pig Festival Event - the Trad & Pizza where there was great music & céilí dancing in the warm sun! The pizzas from The Dough Hut were fantastic & the refreshments from The Brook just great too! Our next walk is to take place on Saturday 15th October - either Bray to Greystones OR the Tram Track in Howth (TBC) for further information please contact: Des Carthy on 087 7846813 or Carolyn Smith on 087 9284307.

Leithinis’s raffle headed up by Paul Kelly our fundraising officer was a great success. Thanks to all those people who bought tickets, or who made donations to the hamper. A very big thank you goes out to McNeela Instruments who donated prizes for the draw and to the management and staff of Donabate Town Centre. The winners of the raffle were:1st Prize - Caroline Coughlan, 2nd Prize - Michael Connolly, 3rd Prize - Donal Mulcahy.Our classes have resumed in the Donabate Portrane Educate together National school. There are still one or two places available . If you are interested in classes with our branch please email us at leithinis@comhaltas.net. Alternatively you can become a member of Comhaltas for €20 per family and partake in our slow sessions and other activities.

Our slow sessions led by Erin McGahan are held in the Parish Hall on the 1st and 3rd Friday of the month. This session is open to all members ( beginner and improvers) of Leithinis and is an excellent way for them to practice the tunes that they have learned in the classes. Thank you to the Parish Hall Committee for facilitating these sessions.

Denis Stack leads a Traditional Irish music session for experienced musicians in Keeling’s at 7.30pm on the first Tuesday of every month. All welcome to go along and listen. The Bleeding Pig Cultural Festival invited Leithinis and friends to the launch in The Brook Pub as the warm up act for Eamonn Galldubh and friends. It was a fantastic night and a huge thanks to Eilish McDermott and team from the Festival Committee for inviting us to this night of craic agus ceol.

In mid September Donabate Parish Hall was the venue for the launch of the newly formed Lambay Cinema Club. The Green Room or the Main Hall are suitable areas for this or similar uses as both have the new acoustic panels, which have successfully greatly reduced the echo effect to near perfect. Also, both rooms are refurbished to a very high standard so depending on what one requires on the night one can use either. It is a great space for Drama, Films & Music in particular to take place. There is very little available times left in the Parish Hall for daily use, if interested contact immediately; but there is some space available for the Cultural & Creative Slot in October/ November - already booked are a Drama Camp for the Halloween Mid-Term Break, then Through the Lens Photography Exhibition, then Leithinis Traditional Music Event for Social Inclusion and a Youth Instrument/Band Session for Over 18’s, then Active Age for All have an extensive Exhibition/Demonstration of its Activities and finally Donabate Portrane Dramatic Society will be putting on a play.If you interested in a space or for further information please contact the Secretary Bernie 01 8434574 or email stpatricksrcdonabate@irishmediagroup.com

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After delays due to Covid and some technical hitches, Donabate Portrane Men’s Shed last
month completed our work in extending the use of the Scouts’ Den for all users by adding an awning at the rear. This was funded by a Community Enhancement Programme grant from the Department of Rural and Community Development under, operated locally by the Fingal Local Community Development Committee. Now as we approach the winter months, our regular Monday morning exercise classes are resuming and plans are afoot for cooking classes sponsored by the HSE and for a number of trips. All this is in addition to our croquet sessions at Newbridge House on Tuesday mornings and our get-togethers at the Scouts’ Den on Thursday mornings. If you’d like to join us, come along to the Scouts’ Den, Portrane Road, between 10:30am and 12:30pm on Thursday morning or contact Jim on 086-3694316.

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We had a very successful promotion in the Shopping Centre in August before Registration last month. We met many new people who were surprised and delighted to know that such a vibrant organisation existed in the village, for the older and not so mature population. People were particularly pleased that we had such a broad range of physical and non-physical classes and that once they were over 55 they could join. They were also surprised that we could offer such high quality classes for such good value. As we are a Not-for-Profit organisation run entirely by volunteers, we can offer this rate. This gives me the opportunity to appeal for volunteers to help, so that we can continue our good work. As a result of this promotion, we registered 24 new members.Registration was busy and we have filled many of our classes. On the first day there was a long queue within the first hour! There was such a great interest in Pilates this term that we have had to introduce an extra class. Some classes still have spaces, Chair Yoga, Stronger for Longer, Singing & Music, Drama, TaiChi……so think about the long dark days of winter ahead and come and join us, to improve the mind or the body or both and to make new friends. While our classes started on the 21st September, we will be able to accommodate people new to the classes by charging pro-rata for the late start. If you are interested in any of our classes please contact us at activeageforall@gmail.com or TEXT only 086 8806808

Details of all our classes are available on our website activeageforall.com

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Corina Johnston, Labour Party Local Area Representative is calling on the National Transport Authority (NTA) to review its contract with the bus operator Go Ahead Ireland due to the unreliability of its services in Fingal.Johnston said; “Ever since Go Ahead Ireland was awarded the contract to operate a number of routes in the greater Dublin Area by the NTA in December 2018 there have been ongoing issues with their bus services in Fingal. The 33A/33B routes in particular have been seriously impacted. Johnston said;”Duncan Smith TD and I have been in constant contact with the bus company and the NTA on these recurring issues. The NTA in response said “ public transport operators are experiencing significant challenges in recruiting qualified staff following the economic and social constraints connected to the COVID-19 pandemic. The impact of these absences is felt the most on low-frequency services (hourly or less frequent), where the time between services is extended with little opportunity for advance warning. The contract expires on the 6th of October 2023 and the Authority have provision for 2 single year extensions. 1 year in advance of the expiry date we must notify the operator of our intention if applicable to extend the contract.“ Johnston added; “in July Go Ahead Ireland introduced a temporary timetable in an effort to reduce the number of cancellations and impact on customers while additional drivers were in training. The full timetable was to be reinstated on 28th August in advance of the children returning to school. It is very regrettable to have been informed in recent days by both the company and the NTA that they are not in a position to give a timeframe for the reinstatement of the full timetable.”
Johnston concluded; “it is regrettable at a time when national policy encourages the use of public transport and when fuel prices are so expensive so many car owners feel they have no alternative but to continue to drive to their destinations due to the unreliability of the existing bus service operated by Go Ahead in Fingal. Duncan Smith TD and I firmly believe that a thorough investigation is warranted prior to any decisions being made in respect of this contract. The NTA must take on board the concerns and needs of the public to ensure confidence in the public transport system.”