Bawnacre Centre celebrates 40 years in business

THE Bawnacre Centre has been praised for its ‘top class facilities and longevity’ as the popular facility in Irvinestown recently celebrated 40 years in operation.

Based in Castle Street and run by Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, it is a fully-equipped leisure and community centre, which caters for a wide range of ages and abilities.

Community stalwart George Beacom has been the driving force behind the iconic leisure centre since it first opened in June 1984, but he wasn’t the only person to be ever-present throughout this time.


John Maguire has worked at the Bawnacre Centre for the entire 40 years too. He said it has been his ‘pleasure’ to be involved at the Irvinestown-based site.

“For me personally, it’s been like a hobby working at it [the Bawnacre Centre],” said Mr Maguire.

“It has been a pleasure to be there working under George [Beacom] and the Bawnacre Centre has always been very supportive to the community of Irvinestown. Young people and adults alike can enjoy the facilities and they can benefit in the most ambitious of sporting adventures.”

The various halls and fitness suites provide a safe space for a range of activities, including sporting events, parties and group meetings. Outside the building, there is a floodlit full-sized Gaelic 3G pitch, a floodlit 3G football pitch, a full-sized grass playing field, two mini tennis courts, four floodlit full-size tennis courts and a play park for children.

St Mary’s College in Irvinestown avails of the facilities regularly, and they congratulated Mr Beacom and his team for their longevity and commitment to the community.

“Everyone at St Mary’s College would like to express our gratitude to George [Beacom] and all the staff at the Bawnacre for their help and support over the years,” said a spokesperson for the school.

“We are so privileged to have unlimited access to their top-class facilities to enhance the learning experience for our pupils. We wish them all the best with the celebrations over the coming weeks.”


Irvinestown St Molaise GAA club also shared and recognised the importance of the leisure facility to the area.

“We thank George [Beacom] and the Bawnacre staff for their support over those years and wish them well as they celebrate this milestone,” said a club tribute.

Deborah Erskine, MLA for Fermanagh and South Tyrone, extended her best wishes to the Castle Street-based organisation on their special celebration.

“Many birthday parties and sporting events held here [at the Bawnacre Centre] down through the years and it’s great to have this facility still open for the local community,” she posted on Facebook.

To celebrate 40 years in business, the outside garden at the Bawnacre was given a colourful makeover as a special tribute to the facility.

“We are delighted that our Horticultural Team were able to play their part by creating this excellent display at the front of the [Bawnacre] Centre,” said Fermanagh and Omagh District Council.

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