The provision of an all-weather astro turf playing pitch at Lakyle National School in Whitegate will form part of an extensive redevelopment of the school which has served the community since its opening in 1909.

The major part of the work will involve the provision of a new classroom, resource learning room and a staff room as well as the reconfiguration of the existing classrooms to accommodate new teaching methods. The project has been allocated €351,000 funding through the Devolved Grant Scheme administered by the Department of Education.

Clare Fine Gael TD Joe Carey said that the project should be ready for tender next month with a view to starting construction in January 2018 with the work scheduled to finish by next September.

Describing it as a very exciting development for the local community, local Fine Gael Councillor Pat Burke said that at  a time when enrolment in Lakyle National School was growing, against most trends in rural areas, the Board of Management were delighted that the current investments would secure the long-term future of the school.

“Having worked closely with Deputy Joe Carey to secure the funding, it is now great to see the results on the ground with the astroturf pitch allowing outdoor activities continue for the children when the school building works get under way.”

Stating that CLÁR funding is providing €50,000 of the €60,000 overall cost of the new playing pitch, Deputy Carey explained that this was part of a €323,132 allocation from the CLÁR programme for the provision of road safety measures and specialist play areas at eight primary schools throughout the county.