Planning lodged for Durrow village hub

Development:Permission asked to build new community centre

Lynda Kiernan

Reporter:

Lynda Kiernan

durrow scarecrow durrow

Site of new Durrow Community Hub.

A Durrow group has applied to demolish the old civil defence building and build a community centre for the village.

A planning application was lodged with Laois County Council on October 22, for a new community centre in Durrow village.

Durrow Development Forum has lodged the application for the ambitious project on Patrick Street.

It starts with the demolition of the old Civil Defence building that they bought last summer from the council for €50,000.

They intend to build a community centre in its place, joined to the former Methodist chapel and ICA hall next door that they have also recently purchased.

The forum is also applying for permission to demolish two associated storage buildings to the side and rear of the civil defence hall, and to demolish a single storey toilet extension to the side of the former chapel.

They intend to demolish the party wall between the civil defence site and the existing car park.

Then they seek to build community facility that is part single storey and part two storey, with meeting rooms and related back up spaces.

It will be attached and internally connected to the former Methodist chapel.

They also want to build a storage and boiler house building and enlarge and refurbish the existing car park.

Evelyn Clancy from Durrow Development Forum had explained their plans last summer to the Leinster Express.

"We hope to bring it back into community use for different organisations of all ages, including our Men's Shed and youth organisations. We hope to make it the hub of the village," she said.

The plans can be viewed in Laois County Council’s planning office. Any submissions must be made by November 25. A decision is due by December 12.

The forum raised some of the money for the project from the successful Durrow Scarecrow Festival.

The festival attracts thousands of visitors from all over Ireland every August.

This year the forum also undertook to finish a €1.2m refurbishment of the village green with Laois County Council.

Those works are funded by Laois County Council using development contributions, and by Transport Infrastructure Ireland, because the N77 road runs through the village.

The forum also hired a consultant and held public consultations to form a five year community development plan.