With construction due to start in Autumn next year, plans for the €1m redevelopment of Rathangan Community Centre were launched last Friday November 2.
The committee have been working on the project for five years now, the funding is almost in place, and the work is due to go out to tender in the middle of next year.
The project, which will see the outside structure of the old church retained, will include the transformation of the interior into a 120-seat theatre space, multipurpose rooms and a dedicated youth area.
“We’ve got €500,000 from Leader Partnership, and €250,000 from Kildare County Council through the Department of Environment.
“The target is to raise €100,000 locally and we have already raised €30,000. Our fundraising campaign is ongoing and we are very grateful for all the support we have received,” explained Paddy O’Loughlin, Chairperson of the Rathangan Community Association.
The innovative plans were on display in the community centre for the launch.
The theatre will have retractable tiered seating and the upstairs area will be specially kitted out to cater for young people. The new plans will also allow the centre to cater for numerous groups and clubs on any given night.
The former St. Patrick’s Catholic Church is a protected structure and the plans include the demolition of the existing extensions to make way for two new extensions. Alterations also include the reinstatement of arched windows based on historic design in the former nave, transepts and tower.
- Niamh O’Donoghue