Bellefield GAA, home of Rapparees-Starlights GAA is set to undergo a complete transformation to create a flagship sports and community facility.
The official sod turning took place this week which marks the start of this ambitious four-phase project.
The overall project will see investment of over €1.5 million, with collaboration from the local community and the Rapparees Starlight’s Finance Committee raising four hundred thousand euros; Wexford County Council providing funds of four hundred thousand euros and a greatly appreciated donation from Mr Sam McCauley of six hundred thousand euros.
The Park will be renamed, McCauley Bellefield Park.
The first phase, which is approaching completion, included the development of two new pitches, fencing and associated drainage works, main infrastructure for a sensory garden as well as a community walking track complete with lighting.
1- Two full size pitches are to be included in the first phase
2- Works on the main infrastructure for a sensory garden have begun
The second phase of the project, which is commencing this month, is a public-community partnership and will include the development of a new statement entrance for the Club, together with 25 new public carparking spaces, new footpath with bollards, fencing, public lighting and signage.
3: A new entrance for the club will be completed in phase 2
4: 25 new parkin spaces will also be part of the second phase
A new pedestrian crossing on the Bellefield Road will be delivered as part of phase two, as well as a new pocket garden with seating and a playground for young children.
5: The new playground
It is anticipated that the works for phase 1 & 2 will complete by Summer 2024.
The proposed Phase 3 will see further improvements in the sporting facilities on offer, with an artificial playing surface, hurling wall and lighting planned. The club will seek funding for this phase via the Sports Capital Program through the Department of Tourism, Culture Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media.
6: Hurling wall and all weather surface will be part of Phase 3 of the development
The final phase of the project will be focused on activation and animation – generating events and activities to attract members of the community to use the facilities and bring the health and wellbeing benefits to fruition.