Halls & Community Centre

The Parish has two Parish Halls or Community Centres, one in Miltown Malbay and one in Moy.

Miltown Malbay Community Centre

The first Parish Community Centre or Hall was built in 1912. Before that there had been different meeting places for the temperance groups and (mainly) the young men of the parish, particularly the footballers, who used to meet socially and play cards, table games, dance a set, etc. These meeting places were basically ad hoc, privately owned premises at different locations throughout the town including the room over the sacristy in the church, the present parish meeting room.

Then many people felt that the parish should have its own hall, and so, at the instigation of Father Gavin, The Parochial Hall was built in 1912 at The Cabhail, meaning a frame – it can also mean a place where there are a number of remains of old buildings. People used to play hurling there. During “the Troubles” the British Army played soccer in it.

The building contractor was Michael Moroney of Ennis Road . This was a very fine wood-framed building, consisting of three rooms – a dance hall and two billiard rooms. The exterior walls and roof were made of corrugated iron and the interior was covered with ½” wood sheeting. The hall had a short life – it was burned in 1920. Some say that the Black and Tans burned the hall; others say that it was local people who burned it to prevent its re-occupation by the security forces. Before the burning the billiard tables were removed. They were used in the hall which was built on the same place in 1926.

This hall was also a very fine building. It consisted of a dance hall, two billiard rooms and a card room. In 1957 building contractor John O’Neill extended this hall. In that year he constructed the present stage area. During the course of construction he noticed that the west wall of the hall, which was made of mass concrete, was deteriorating and he found it necessary to buttress it.

In 1971 Canon O’Reilly felt that something should be done with the east wall of the hall.

It had fared better than the west wall because it was more sheltered from the prevailing rain and winds but it was then also deteriorating. It was felt that severe frost could do a lot of harm to it. John O’Neill felt that it would be better to build a completely new hall as buttresses at the east wall would take up a lot of room and also hinder future hall development. His advice was taken and fund raising began. In 1973, ’74 and ’75 the proceeds of the summer dancing festival were given to the Hall Building Fund and there were other fund-raising functions, e.g. discos. In 1976 a hall committee was formed. The committee decided to tackle the job right away and to tackle it in two or three stages. Work on the first stage began in April ’76 and was completed in November ’76. John O’Neill was the building contractor. The new construction consisted of a games and dance hall and ladies and gents toilets. The front rooms remained. The cost of the job was 28,500 pounds. The Miltown Malbay Social Club in New York contributed two thousand pounds.

Then the committee began to think about the second stage of hall development. Some thought about putting up a two-storey construction at the front of the hall. Then the site at the east side of the hall became available. The committee purchased it and decided to build a social and cultural club on the site. The committee also decided to rebuild the front rooms and to do the two jobs at the same time. John O’Neill was the lowest of six tenders and began work in March 1982. It was completed in 1983.

Since then the basic shape of the hall has remained unchanged. It may have dated a bit, particularly the main hall is a bit small for indoor games, etc. but in general it provides a very adequate venue for diverse and engaging meetings and activities throughout the year as can be seen in our activities page.

Moy Hall / Tommy White Memorial Community Centre

This hall was originally Moy National School from 1846 to 1959 when the present Scoil Iosef Naofa was built. It had actually begun it’s existence as an intended Church. Building had begun in the earlier part of the 19th century but it was left unfinished and unroofed. In 1846 it was completed as a school. Since 1959 it has been developed as the local community centre due, in no small measure, to the effort and work of the late Tommy White. After his death in 2008 it was renamed The Tommy White Memorial Community Centre. It serves the local community well providing an adequate venue for various activities and meetings. Of continuing success there is the Youth Club, founded by Tommy White, which meets on Friday evenings except for the Summer months

 

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