Works on the redevelopment of Tuam Stadium will commence in a matter of weeks following the announcement of a major grant for the venue.
It follows last week’s announcement that the ground is to receive over €110,000 towards the provision of new dressing rooms at the Stadium.
This, coupled with the €160,000 that has already been raised by a local group who want to see Tuam Stadium developed, has resulted in works being planned for the venue.
It now means that there is more than €270,000 available to commence the first phase of the development at Tuam Stadium.
Tenders for the project are now being reviewed as a result of the significant windfall from the Government’s Sports Capital Grant. The additional funding can allow for the new dressing rooms can now be built.
And once works on this project commence, the fundraising committee are embarking on a venture that will ultimately result on a new stand being provided at the ground.
The existing stand is in a dilapidated state and needs to be replaced so that Tuam Stadium can once again host some major national league and championship matches.
Kevin O’Dwyer of the Development Advocates of Tuam Stadium (DAFTS) said that the allocation was a major boost to the overall development of the ground into the future.
“This is where we start with Tuam Stadium. It has been a venue that has been ignored for so long but now it is high on the agenda. Works will commence early in the New Year,” Mr O’Dwyer confirmed.
He said that the fact that the Government recognised the need for the redevelopment of Tuam Stadium meant that Croke Park and the GAA authorities also had to sit up and take notice.
Viewers who watched the recent Connacht club championship matches involving Corofin were shocked at the state of the stand and terracing in Tuam. Some even took to social media to express their horror at the visual state of the ground.
The stand was described by some as being something like an agricultural shed that had fallen into a state of dilapidation while parts of the terraced areas were sad to look like derelict space that was in need of an upgrade. The TG4 coverage of the game certainly seemed to expose a lot of deficiencies in the ground.
Work is now expected to commence on the development of the new dressing rooms at the ground within weeks but the long term plan is to construct an ‘end to end’ stand so that the venue can accommodate around 18,000 of a crowd.
For years Tuam Stadium has been living in the shadow of Pearse Stadium and consequently a lack of investment has resulted in the venue being unable to take the crowds that it once enjoyed.
But the determined Development Advocates for Tuam Stadium have set about fund raising for the revamp of the ground with the intention that it will once again play host to Connacht senior football championship matches. This fundraising is now set to continue in earnest in light of the new funding allocation.
If developed, it would also mean that Tuam Stadium would again be capable of hosting a Connacht championship encounter – with many GAA fans relishing the prospect of a mouth-watering clash between Galway and Mayo at the venue sometime in the not too distant future.