Sports Minister praises state-of-the-art facility in Lisburn

Cynthia Smith, Deputy Secretary of DCAL talks to World Champion Niall McVeigh at the Opening of Lisburn Racquets Club's new facilities watched by Clive Irwin, chairman of the Management Committee LRC
Cynthia Smith, Deputy Secretary of DCAL talks to World Champion Niall McVeigh at the Opening of Lisburn Racquets Club's new facilities watched by Clive Irwin, chairman of the Management Committee LRC

Sports Minister Caral Ni Chuilin has praised the “state of the art” Lisburn Racquets facility.

The praise came as Mayor of Lisburn Councillor Thomas Beckett cut the tape at the opening of the newly extended sports complex which comprises Alpha Badminton Club, Hilden Tennis Club and Lisburn Racquets Squash Club.

The Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure, through Sport NI, provided £489,000 funding for the facility including improvements to changing rooms and the three-court Alpha Hall, an extension to the existing reception to include sports shop and office accommodation and significant work to improve disability access levels.

“This facility will not only benefit the three sporting clubs from different disciplines which use the LRC as their ‘home’ base, but also the local community who now have a state of the art leisure facility on their doorstep,” the Minister said.

“The club has tasted success on the international stage with Alpha member Niall McVeigh winning gold at the para-badminton World Championships in 2013 and it is especially pleasing that the major improvements include greatly enhanced levels of access for those with disability. Sporting participation should hold no barriers to anyone and I wish the Lisburn Racquets club and all who use it every success and much enjoyment in the years ahead.”

At the official opening the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure was represented by Deputy Secretary Cynthia Smith while Councillor Beckett was delighted to perform the cutting of the tape at this particular facility.

“I attended the club recently for their Finals Day and was amazed at the vibrancy of the club and during that visit was able to get a photograph taken with a World Champion,” he said.