THE final piece in the ambitious school playground project of Bennekerry National School parents’ association fell into place recently. Teachers and pupils looked on as Fr Tom Little, PP, Askea-Bennekerry, formally blessed the playground equipment.
It was purchased from Galway city-based Kompan Playground Equipment.
The playground items include a spinner seat, see-saw, a balance beam, a double tower with slide and climbing frame, a hang bridge and a sway alley.
The parents’ association can take justifiable pride in seeing this wonderful facility become a reality. After all, it was through their initiative in organising the ‘20K Drop’ last November in the Woodford Dolmen Hotel that finance for the playground was raised in one fell swoop.
The ‘Drop’ was a runaway success, with up to 500 people in attendance on the night.
It was the first time that a Carlow group had sought the professional expertise of Nenagh-based Pallas Marketing Services Ltd. The Pallas slogan is ‘Who wants to be a Thousandaire’ and is based on the Million Pound Drop game show on Channel 4 television. The Irish version is organised by Pallas for schools, clubs and societies.
The 20K Drop raised more than €24,000 and all of that money has now been spent on the playground equipment.
Of course, due praise must also go to the businesses and companies which each provided €922 in sponsorship for the project. The eight major sponsors were Top Oil, Swan’s Electrical, Fitzpatrick’s Garage, Dan Morrissey, Electrical Power Tools (EPT), Fairgreen Shopping Centre, Wall’s Engineering, and Woods Contract Cleaners. In addition, 124 other companies, firms, businesses and individuals each contributed €150.
In late May of this year, the parents’ association handed over a cheque for €24,246.64 to then school principal Maria Doyle and from then on work on the playground progressed.
So an idea which germinated at a parents’ association meeting in January 2016 has come to fruition some 21 months later and the new playground is set to be a place of joy for future generations of pupils at Bennekerry National School.