Thursday, 28 April 2016

Tracton offers a Hearty Welcome

Work begins on Old School restoration.

Tracton Community Council

Tracton Muintir na Tire Community Council was founded in November 1998. Founding members were Kathleen Dempsey, Ann Kelly, Nancy Horan, Philip O Donoghue and Bridget Twomey. Margaret O Reilly was an early adoptee from the Ballyfeard Community Alert. To this day these founding members are committed and active members of the Tracton Community Council.

The broad brief of the Council is the welfare and interests of those living within the boundaries of the Tracton area, which stretches from the strand at Fountainstown to Ballinclashett in the west and north to the townlands of Boardee and Granig. Over the years the Council has expanded to include sub groups, such as the Oysterhaven and Nohoval Residents Association an the Fountainstown Residents Association. These sub groups retain their own integrity and local agendas but are included under the umbrella of the Tracton Community Council. Almost certainly the most successful sub-group of the Tracton Council has been the KOST committee, established specifically to see through the restoration of the Georgian schoolhouse at Knocknamanagh (a protected structure) and then the expansion of that restored building, now the Tracton Arts and Community Centre, the headquarters of the Community Council.

Because of the daunting task facing KOST in 2006, another hugely successful group emerged, the Roberts Cove Vintage Committee, which is a fundraiser extraordinaire over the past 8 years, not just for the Tracton Arts and Community Centre but for many local and national worthy causes.
The wonderful Community & Arts Centre today

Other groups for particular interests work under the umbrella of the Community Council, such as the Active Retired Committee, the Inkwell Drama group, the Pizza Oven Group, the Genealogy/Local History Committee and others.
The Genealogy/Local History Committee respond to all enquiries re local family roots. Archiving of genealogical and historical materials. Staging genealogical/historical events. They also work with the primary schools in history projects.
Members of Genealogy local history group at work
The Marketing and Management group was established for the specific task of promoting the use of the facilities at the Tracton Arts and Community Centre. Muintir na Tire, SECAD, and other County and State bodies quote the successful work of the Tracton Community Council and its many sub-groups and rightly so.

The Tracton Community Market been in operation for almost one year on the first Sunday of every month in the Arts and Community Centre. There is now an established range of loyal stall holders who sell everything from home baking to eggs, brown bread, potatoes, vegetables andpate. New stall holders are arriving regularly with Fresh Cut Flowers,
Fowl, Kindling and Pizza from the Community oven also available.
Pupils, teachers and parents of Scoil Naomh Fionán gather for the raising of the National Flag on March 15th commemorating the 1916 Easter Rising.

Activities at the Tracton Centre-

The landscaping project around the Centre is complete Grateful thanks to Pat and Niall for all the work they put in and the excellence of same and to the members of the committee who gave their time and expertise during the project. Thanks also to everyone who helped out in the planting. Ongoing community classes and activities such as: Step Aerobics, Guitar lessons, adult table tennis, kids art classes, Baby and Toddler group, Fitness for the older adult, drama group rehearsals, Public Health Nurse Clinic, Active Retired Group meetings, Tracton Community Market
Irregular classes/workshops/activities throughout the year: Yoga for the ICA and TARA groups, Harp Ensemble rehearsals, Cello lessons, Strength & Conditioning classes, Arts Workshops with Victor Richardson, Carrigaline Choral Group rehearsals, Holy Communion Gathering by Knocknamanagh NS, Coffee Morning by Rennies NS, Kids Birthday parties, Carrigaline and Crosshaven Scouts Groups sleep-overs, arts exhibitions during Tracton Arts Festival and Martin Hayes concert, Craft Workshop
New classes: Dance classes for teenagers/children, juvenile table tennis
Once-offs: Church of Ireland AGM, Priests Gathering, SECAD Evening, Diarmuid Lynch Documentary filming, Helen O’Dowd Theatre booking for launch of her new website, Heritage Talk, Charity Walk Refreshments, Parish Council Coffee Gathering, Christmas Fair, Muintir na Tire meeting, Baby Shower, Ballyfeard Community Alert Senior Citizens Christmas Party, KYSS Mental Health Information Evening
Events in the Theatre: Choir Concerts organised by Discover Ireland Tours, Crosshaven Drama Group Theatre production, “On the Road” Comedy evening, Student Cello and Harp Music Performance, Tracton Arts Week, Tracton A/C Talks, Luca Bloom, Martin Hayes and Dennis Cahill, India Food and Film Gathering, Christmas Concert, Tracton All Stars Performance, “Love and Hisses” – Valentine’s Day Concert, “Don’t Dress For Dinner” Comedy Play, “Love, Life and Lyrics” by Fiona O’Reilly, Vanbrugh Quartett Concert,
Regular Sub-Comittee Meetings throughout the year: TCC, Roberts Cove Vintage Festival Committee, Genealogy group, Marketing & Management, Oven Committee, Trails Committee
Other events: Famine Walk
Austrian students: between April 2015 – April 2016: 16 weeks used by Austrian school and summer groups
Austrian students at the Centre

The success of the Knocknamanagh project is reflected in the range of users, the scope of activities and events taking place at the Tracton Arts and Community Centre and the increasing numbers in bookings and enquiries.

Inkwell Theatre Group;

After a successful run for their first play in March 2015 they began regular rehearsals for ‘Don’t Dress For Dinner’ in January. This was completely sold out and they took over €4500 over the 4 performance nights, and made a donation of €2000 to the TCC.
Provided they can attract some more members by September, they intend to stage another comedy play during March or April 2017 and are already looking at a script, and have some interesting ideas we would like to try out to enhance the theatre experience for the audience next year.

Tracton Active Retired Association (T.A.R.A.) meet in the Tracton Arts and Community Centre on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month from 2.45pm to 4.30pm.At their afternoon get-togethers they do some Go for Life exercise and also play a few games, such as bingo and cards.  They also have speakers on different topics. This year Paddy O’Brien attended some of their meetings and entertained with some interesting stories, poetry as well as music and song. They organised an outing to Griffins Garden Centre and Macroom Heritage Town and were joined by some of the members of Minane Bridge I.C.A. We joined Carrigaline Senior Citizens for their Christmas Party T.A.R.A. exists to enable older people to lead a healthy and active life well in to retirement and new members and new ideas are always welcome.
The Tracton Trails group completed the O Murchú walk at a cost of €7,000 and this will soon be officially opened. This group is trying to establish that the Old Road between Minane Bridge and Ballygrissane is still viable as a possible public walk.
Fountainstown Community Association saw a significant increase in community involvement which together with Committee efforts, and County Council support resulted in significant improvements , and a broad range of events for the community . In addition there has been a general increase in awareness of the environmental values of the area , and the need to support all efforts to sustain the area. A Summary of the range of activities successfully undertaken during the year included:The County Council encouraged by local representatives , have completed a new Sea wall with both substantial protective and aesthetic value to the beach area
There is a Japanese Knot weed  County Council treatment programme underway
There was a planting of Christmas Tree and surrounding shrubbery
and a ‘Carols by candlelight ‘ Christmas event was held and  exceptionally well supported and appreciated with excellent performances.
There was a reopening of the car park planters Maintenance of flower beds
A Solar powered Beach light was installed and negotiations with Vodafone on Mobile/Internet reception
Other improvements include a bus shelter installation, new Information signs
and continued improvement to the picnic area and new picnic benches and much more
The Tidy Towns Minane Bridge group have installed two new picnic tables in the car park as the timber ones have rotted over the years. They are used a lot in Summer by people passing by.
There is also a very informative notice board by the river side which gives information on the local birds in our area.
The OYSTERHAVEN AND NOHOVAL committee is managed by a dedicated enthusiastic group of eight local residents. Their Activities in 2015 included Beach clean on 14th May during Clean Coasts Week. Thanks to good P.R. 30 people took part and worked hard to make our beaches at Oysterhaven safer and cleaner. A group photo and treats for the children marked the end of the event.They were delighted to receive the Green Coasts Award for the beaches at Oysterhaven.
A Fundraising Quiz for Nohoval Village Festival was a great success and a very enjoyable night was had by all. The Blessing of Boats was held in August after the Annual George Cronin Angling Competition on a rare fine Sunday. Committee members provided a mouthwatering barbecue, tea and cakes for the anglers and locals.Prizes were awarded later that night in Finders Inn.

Nohoval Village Festival: was their biggest event of the year.Weeks of planning and extra meetings resulted in a very well organised afternoon of fun, games, races and challenges for young and old. A large team of helpers were drafted in and their help was invaluable on the day. Delicious food was available from stalls along the street. Musical entertainment provided by local artists continued long into the night and was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone Projects completed during the year include two Community Notice Boards, one is in Nohoval Village near the Chapel Steps and the other is situated near the Coast Guard Station in Oysterhaven. Every club and association in the parish are welcome to use them.

The results of a Flower and Shoreline Survey are compiled into two viewing stands along the Beach Path at the Cush,they are very colourful and full of information regarding local wild flowers and beach/shore life. Work in progress for this group includes a Dog Bag Dispenser for Nohoval Village, the Upgrading the Anchor at Oysterhaven Slip, the erection of Bicycle Stands in the car park, the upgrading the Tracton Directory and planting in Nohoval Car Park, Ballinaclashet and Oysterhaven
The Tracton Arts Festival was inaugurated and hopefully will be an annual event at the beginning of July. they had Billy Crosbie Productions perform their concert for three nights based on the life of Frank Sinatra. A Rory Gallagher tribute night with artisan food and support bands was the main event on Saturday. They also ran two art exhibitions for the duration of the festival, which enabled them to cover all expenses and put something in the TACC bank account.
In the Autumn they had two hugely successful concerts which were sold out. One by Luka Bloom and the other featured Martin Hayes and Denis Cahill. They hope to have these artists again later in 2016 and have plans to establish a Film Club and a Cabaret Night both of which could be monthly events over the winter. The Festival for this year will be even better.  The headline act on Saturday night July 9th will be Mick Flannery. So all in all a good first year and something to build on in the future. The website, which started as the Tracton Arts site to promote the Inkwell, has been expanded to cover all events and clubs at the schoolhouse as well as the theatre. Our subscription list continues to grow with each event. Everyone who attends for the first time is very complimentary about the excellent facilities and the theatre in particular is a glowing testimony to the vibrant arts community in Tracton.
 Want to help or get involved with Tracton Community Council or one of its sub Groups? Even one year’s volunteerism will be a very welcome help. Younger volunteers within the Tracton Community will be most welcome indeed to ensure that the brilliant work of the long time members will continue, for the good of the entire community. The AGM of the Tracton Community Council was held last Monday April 25th at 8pm at the Tracton Arts and Community Centre in Minane Bridge and there were reports form all the groups. Denis Kelly of Muintir oversaw the election of Officers for the coming year.

…..if you didn't make the meeting, contact the Administrator, Lisa, at the Tracton Arts and Community Centre, Tel. 086 0711910,who will be glad to take your details.

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