Comer Brothers hooked on backing Hockey in the West of Ireland.  

Hockey in the west of Ireland is set for a huge boost with the Comer Group proposing to build a centre of excellence for the sport at the Mountain South venue which is located just outside of Athenry.

The development is set to provide hockey in the region with a massive boost to an area crying out for improved facilities to cope with a growing level of interest in the sport.

Recently, new clubs have formed in Athenry, Loughrea, Ballinasloe and Tuam despite the lack of full-sized, hockey-specific playing facilities in the region while clubs in Galway city are required to have waiting lists due to over-subscription of players relative to facilities available.

 Mountain South is a 103-acre plot of land which the Comer Group acquired in 2018 and has been earmarked to also welcome a centre of excellence for Galway United Football Club with a number of soccer pitches and a gymnasium proposed in the plans submitted recently.

As part of the project, the Comer brothers have extended a helping hand to grow the game of hockey in Connacht and a masterplan outlining two hockey pitches has been submitted as part of a planning application to Galway County Council.

Mr. Richard Fahey, interim CEO of Hockey Ireland, said: “This proposal is massive for hockey in the region where we are experiencing huge growth and interest with hundreds of new players taking up the sport recently. 

“Having a high-class facility for players will open up hockey to them to pursue their new passion and can only accelerate and consolidate the growth of the game. Following the sports capital support for the Miller’s Lane project in Galway city, this is potentially another great development and testament to the work being done by Connacht Hockey’s officers.”

Mr. Kevin Keane, Chair and President of Connacht Hockey, added:  “The facility will bring opportunity to all in our community, young and old, as a centre of excellence for the development of our sport in the Western Region. We are delighted to be able to share a facility like this with Galway United and look forward to a prosperous future together.”

Ms Aisling Keogh, Connacht Hockey said: “We are very grateful to Luke Comer for meeting with representatives of Connacht Hockey. Mr Comer listened to our story and recognised the need for hockey facilities in the West of the country and specifically wanted to give his support to activities that cater for women. He invited us into this project with nothing but positivity and we look forward to working together in the future.

“We are so grateful, as a community, to the Comer Group, Brian and Luke Comer for inviting us into this exciting development. What the Comer Group have done for hockey in the West by helping us with facilities is just an amazing story.”

Luke Comer stated he was delighted to hear the story of Connacht Hockey and their struggle for facilities in the West. 

“As a keen sports person, It is so important to support young people in sport and particularly women in sport. Following our meeting with Aisling and Kevin, the Comer Group were very happy that Connacht Hockey were to be included in the development at the Mountain South, Comer Group, Centre of Excellence, Athenry, Co Galway.”