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Altnaveigh House redevelopment project is underway

Published on:  17 Jan 2007

Altnaveigh House has started work on a major project to redevelop an old warehouse at the organisations premises situated on the Downshire Road in Newry. Community Space will be provided on the first floor with accommodation for the newly developed Community Business ‘Tartan Enterprises’ occupying the ground floor.

The £882,000 project has received support from the International Fund for Ireland, Rural Development Council, Newry and Mourne District Council, OFDFM, Community Relations Unit, Ulster Garden Villages Trust, LOL 37 and ongoing Public Donations.

An accredited training provider, Altnaveigh House delivers ‘customised’ training programmes to a wide range of voluntary groups covering various areas of need including, educational, cultural, and social development based projects. The organisation also provides mentoring support to 206 community organisations, many of which are rural based.

Altnaveigh House has participated in the International Fund for Ireland’s ‘Community Leadership Programme’ and has also implemented a successful project under the umbrella of the IFI Community Bridges Programme

At a recent visit to view the progress of the building work, International Fund for Ireland Chairman Denis Rooney said: “We are very pleased to see this project underway. It is a very good example of Community self help and will, through the provision of an income stream, ensure the Organisation’s long term sustainability and enable them to play an inclusive and meaningful role in the continuing development of Newry.”

Martin McDonald, Chief Executive of the Northern Ireland Rural Development Council said: “As part of the Rural Development Programme, the Northern Ireland Rural Development Council is delighted to have been able to assist Altnaveigh House Trust (2005 Ltd) in the development of this venture, with a grant of £217,512 from the Economic Infrastructure measure of the EU Building Sustainable Prosperity Programme.  As a Council RDC wants to encourage a flourishing and sustainable rural Northern Ireland and believe that rural communities play a vital and significant role in achieving this.  This project, involving the development of an economic and social resource facility, is an example of a rural community identifying and addressing its needs and is one in which RDC is very proud to be involved”

Councillor Michael Carr, Mayor of Newry & Mourne District Council added: "The redevelopment of Altnaveigh House is an inspiring example of a community bringing about change for the benefit of everyone in the locality. I have no doubt that the completed project will be a popular and much valued resource and I wish everyone involved every success."

Speaking on behalf of the Altnaveigh House Board, its Chairman, David Hanna MBE stated “I wish to thank each of the organisations involved in this project for their excellent support and commitment– both in financial terms and in the form of wise council prior to and during the rebuild. The development of this new Resource Centre is a further example of what can be achieved when a Community comes together with a common sense of purpose and duty.

He added: "We are indebted to the ‘Funding Bodies’ and their representatives for making available much needed capital in order that this facility might be created. I also wish to thank those members of the public, from across the religious and political divide, for their endless generosity in supporting our fund raising events and initiatives. This new Centre will afford Altnaveigh House an excellent opportunity to help communities to better engage with each other in order that they can rise to the numerous challenges facing them as individuals as the Greater Newry Area continues to embrace the peace process. Well done – one and all”.

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