I love hearing positive news and this is a story that I have been following on Social Media for quite some time. If there’s one thing I’ve noticed, especially at the moment, there is a real need for communities, it feels like this is being lost in some areas. This is a fantastic story of a community in action.
When The Knocknashee Inn came up for auction, a call went out to the members of the Achonry Mullinabreena Community, and between them they raised €60,000 to purchase the property, and they have big plans for the place.
From the Facebook page:
Beneath the ‘Hill of the Fairies’ you will find Lavagh’s latest project, The Knocknashee Community Hub. Acquired by the local community to create a space where young and old can gather and the existing community spirit can be nurtured and enhanced. The Hub has a long local history. Originally owned by the Mullen family, The Hub will be a place where young and old can gather and where the existing community spirit can be nurtured and enhanced. The Hub is surrounded by significant historical and archaeological sites like Knocknashee Hill, Court Abbey, Achonry Cathedral and Chaffpool House. Just a stones throw away is the increasingly popular Knocknashee Hill walk. Officially opened in 2020, the walk is proving to be a very popular local amenity and has resulted in a huge increase in tourist activity.
I called into the hub yesterday, the café was in full swing – this is open every Saturday and Sunday from 10am – 2pm and is run entirely by volunteers. I met Noel, who is involved with the project, and he kindly gave me a guided tour.
Beyond the café doors there was a hive of activity, volunteers of all ages have been gathering and turning this property, that was in need of attention, into a real gem of a building. The cosy café and the large function room are already complete, and work is well underway on the bar area, with plans to turn it into a social club for the community.
It’s heart-warming to see such positivity and community spirit in a community and I really congratulate all involved. There have been book sales (in fact there’s a used book stall in Achonry Farmers Market) and all funds go back to the community.
The hub has a wish list so if there’s anyone who is in a position to help, you can contact them at email@example.com
You can also follow their news on Social Media:
Knocknashee Community Hub is here.
Achonry Mullinabreena Community is here.
You can read my blog post about the Knocknashee Walk here.
So far the Hub is hosting fitness classes and walks, and I know there will be much more to follow. Thanks so much Noel for the tour and well done to all involved.