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18/11/2014 - Fanad scoops top prize at Pride of Place Awards

Fanad scoops top Pride of Place prize

Gaeltacht Beo Fhánada, Fanad ,Co Donegal (Back) Christina O’Donnell, Donegal County Council, Marty Walsh, MC, George Jones,Chairman IPB, Dr Christopher Moran,Chairman Co-Operation Ireland and Tom Dowling ,Chairman Pride of Place  (Front) Máire Ní Fhearraigh, Donegal County Council, Caitlín Uí Chochláin, Donegal County Council, Aoife Nic Giolla Bháin, Siobhán Nic Giolla Bháin, Eimer Ní Fhríl, Treasa Ní Cholla at the 12th Annual IPB Pride of Place Awards in association with Co-operation Ireland at Tracey's West County Hotel Ennis. Photograph by Eamon Ward


Fanad scooped top prize in the annual IPB Co-operation Ireland Pride of Place Awards announced on Saturday night (15 November) in Treacy’s West County Hotel, Ennis Co Clare. They won the top position in the Islands and Coastal Communities Category. Gweedore (Gaoth Dhobhair) also scooped one of the prestigious runner up prizes in Category 4, which is for populations between 1500 and 4000 people.


In their citation, the judges said, “They found this place in northwest Donegal and its people an absolute pleasure to visit as they were brought on a community journey of over 50 years. Fanad is a community always looking to the future while building on the attractiveness of its environment and location. Gaeltacht Beo Fhánada demonstrated an infectious enthusiasm and passion for their area. The judges were also impressed with the manner in which the younger people in the community readily accepted they had a responsibility to continue the work of previous generations and take on the leadership mantle. The future is in good hands”.


It was also announced that Gweedore was nominated for a LivCom Award. These awards are the world’s only Awards Competition focusing on International Best Practice regarding the management of the local environment and the winners will be announced in 2015.


Pride of Place Award Dobhair

Ionad Naomh Pádraig, Dobhar, Gweedore, Co Donegal (Back) Ronan Foley, Chief Executive IPB, Tony O'Brien, Leas Cathaoirleach Clare County Council, Dr Christopher Moran, Chairman Co-Operation Ireland and Tom Dowling , Chairman Pride of Place (Front) Máire Mhic Giolla Eannaigh, Máire Uí Chomhaill, Caitlin Ní Fhearraigh agus Caitlín Uí Chochláin, Donegal County Council at the 12th Annual IPB Pride of Place Awards in association with Co-operation Ireland at Tracey's West County Hotel Ennis.


The five groups from Donegal who took part in this year’s All Island Pride of Place Awards were Ionad Naomh Pádraig, Dobhar, Áislann Rann na Feirste, Gaeltacht Beo Fhánada, Sliabh Sneacht Centre, Drumfries and Coiste Pobail Ghort a’Choirce. 


Chief Executive Seamus Neely congratulated Gaeltacht Beo Fhánada on winning their category and Ionad Naomh Pádraig, Dobhar for achieving runner up status in their category and for being nominated for a LivCom Award.   He said “The Council has been working closely with communities in Donegal for many years and we believe that the Pride of Place competition is a great way to recognise and showcase the tremendous work that takes place throughout the county.  I am delighted that these two groups have been recognised for their achievements.  Each of the competing groups were worthy of the top prize and I would like to thank them for the work that they have done and the difference that they have made to the lives of people living in their community”.


An Cathaoirleach Cllr. John Campbell joined with the Chief Executive in congratulating these groups saying “we recognise the enormous contribution made by communities and volunteers to life in Donegal.  Each of these groups has achieved great things for their own communities.  They are great examples of what can be achieved by people coming together with a common aim in mind.  Each project is special in its own unique way having addressed a particular need in their own community.  Congratulations to both Gaeltacht Beo Fhánada and Ionad Naomh Pádraig, Dobhar on their prestigious awards.



More than 800 people attended the gala ceremony to hear the announcement of the winners and runners up in the 12th Annual IPB Pride of Place Awards in association with Co-operation Ireland. The awards were greeted with great celebration by representatives of community groups, from all over the island of Ireland, eagerly anticipating the announcement of winners.


On hand at the awards to MC was RTE Sports Commentator Marty Morrissey who was joined on stage by Councillor Tony O’Brien, Leas Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, Ronan Foley, Chief Executive IPB, Dr. Christopher Moran, Chairman, Co-operation Ireland and Tom Dowling, Chairman, Pride of Place, Paddy Crowe, Inis Oirr and George Jones, Chairman, IPB to present the winners with their awards.


Co-operation Ireland CEO Peter Sheridan said “I congratulate everyone, and in particular the winners, who participated in year’s competition. Pride of place celebrates what people like about where they live, the people and the areas that make a community what it is."He continued, “Co-operation Ireland values this Pride of Place competition as a key driver in community development and for the past 12 years, it has been an integral part of our work. However, we would not be able to do it without the support of our sponsors IPB, our judging panel, the Pride of Place Committee and everyone who works to make it a success. I would like to thank Clare County Council for hosting this wonderful awards ceremony, and giving us the opportunity to celebrate each other’s endeavours.”


Speaking at the event, Ronan Foley, CEO IPB said:

”IPB Insurance is proud to be associated as title sponsors of the IPB Pride of Place Awards and more importantly what it represents. I firmly believe that it is essential that we recognise communities and the thousands of volunteers across the island of Ireland that give of themselves selflessly every day. As a mutual insurer that insures local authorities and their communities across the island of Ireland, these awards are an excellent fit. It is clear that working together and getting things done increases peoples’ pride in where they live and in turn helps build vibrant communities. All those nominated epitomise the sense of community spirit that can be seen all across Ireland, with people committed to creating positive civic change in their respective communities.”


Also in attendance was Tom Dowling, Chairman of Pride of Place, who said:

”After 12 years of Pride of Place communities all over the island of Ireland continue to demonstrate to the judges their amazing capacity to care for the people in their communities and respect their heritage, culture and environment. He also paid particular thanks to the local authorities all over the island of Ireland, Co-operation Ireland and IPB Insurance for their ongoing support for this unique community competition. ”


Councillor Tony O’Brien, Leas Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, said:

“Clare has a proud tradition in this competition and the council was honoured to play host to community groups from all over the country. The Pride of Place Awards gave us an opportunity to showcase the county to a national audience and also celebrate the vital contributions made by community partnerships.”

IPB Pride of Place, which was first piloted in the summer of 2003 and came from the Local Authority All-Island Steering Forum, aims to recognise and celebrate the vital contributions that communities make to society. The Pride of Place Competition is unique as it specifically recognisesthe involvement of the local community in all aspects of rural and urban regeneration, including promoting social cohesion, heritage and environmental awareness.


The Competition is run by Co-operation Ireland in conjunction with the Pride of Place Steering Committee and is sponsored by IPB.



For further information, contact Catrina Gallen Mob 0044 (0) 7738 313965



The full list of winners is shown below:




Population Category 0 – 250

Winner: Glenfarne , Co Leitrim

Runner up: Kilberry , Co Meath

Runner up:Milford , Co Cork


Population Category 250 – 750

JointWinner: Ardmore, County Waterford

Joint Winner: Belcarra Community Council, Co Mayo   

Runner up: Corduff Raferagh, Co Monaghan                 


Population Category 750 – 1500

Winner: The Community of Tydavnet, Co Monaghan  

Runner up: Strokestown, Co Roscommon  

Runner up: Belclare/ Sylane, Co Galway


Population Category 1500 - 4000

Winner:  Kenmare, Co Kerry

Runner up:Claregalway, Co Galway

Runner up: Gaoth Dhobhair (Gweedore), Co Donegal


Eco Initiative Category

Winner: The Cloughjordan Community, Co Tipperary

Runner up:  Eco Tribes, Co Louth

Runner up: Tuamgraney Community Woodland, Co Clare


Community Innovation Category

Winner: Festina Lente, Co Wicklow

Runner up: Causeway Rural & Urban Network – Field of Dreams, Coleraine

Runner up:  Clarisford Park, Co Clare


Community Health Category

Winner: New Ross Allotments and Men’s Shed, Co Wexford

Runner up: Innisfree Wheelers Cycling Club, Co Sligo

Runner up: Land of the Giants, Co Mayo


Housing Estates Category

Winner: Battery Heights, Co Westmeath

Runner up: Radharc na Cille Housing Estate, Co Limerick

Runner up: Cranmore Housing Estate, Sligo Town


Islands & Coastal Communities Category

Winner: Fanad, Co Donegal

Runner up: Goleen & District, Co Cork

Runner up: Chonamara Láir, Co Galway      


Urban Neighbourhoods Category

Winner: Mulhuddart, Fingal Council Area

Runner up:The Southend Community, Wexford  

Runner up: County Down Rural Community Network



Livcom nominees            

Goleen, Co Cork

Gaoth Dhobair (Gweedore), Co Donegal

Dalkey, Dun Laoghaire Rathdown

Chonamhara Láir, Co Galway

Ardmore, Co Waterford



Special Award - The Community of Clones, Co Monaghan


Special Award - Glasthule Buildings, Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Council Area


Special award - Community Wellness Empowerment Leadership & Life Skills,   Limerick City



Population Category Under 1,000 - Cities

Winner: Clarawood Estate, Belfast

Runner up: Galway’s West End


Population Category Over 1,000 - Cities

Winner: Doughiska/ Merlin Woods, Galway City

Runner up: Ligoniel, North Belfast


Eco Initiative Category – Cities

Winner: Eco Mattress Recycling Ltd, Dublin City

Runner up: Knocknaheeny/ Holyhill Community Garden, Cork City


Innovation Category – Cities

Winner: Something Special, Derry/ Londonderry

Runner up:Cork Academy of Music


Community Health Category - Cities

Winner:  Waterford Sports Partnership

Runner up: Glen Resource Centre, Cork City


Urban Neighbourhoods Category – Cities

Winner: Armagh Neighbourhood Renewal Partnership

Runner up: Greater Village Area, South Belfast                 


Council Community Engagement Award:   Winner: Clare County Council 


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