Memories and friendships

Irishtown Community Centre committee members, including Neville Collis, Jan Bishop, Angela Chapman, Molly Spinks and Tom O’Halloran, are encouraging locals to take a walk down memory lane at the 40 year anniversary of the community centre next month. Picture: Ashleigh Force.

Milestone. The Irishtown Community Centre will erupt with laughter and anecdotes of days gone by at its 40 year anniversary next month.

The Irishtown Community Centre was established four decades ago in a community effort to replace the former Irishtown Hall.

Built in 1900, by Frank and Willie Smith of Stanley, the hall was opened the following year and serviced the community for seven decades before it was demolished, paving the way for the current community owned centre.

Costing approximately $80,000, the Irishtown Community Centre was built in 1977 by Russell King in a volunteer effort.

The facility was opened on October 14 and now four decades on, community members will reminisce on the many memories they share.

From sporting club meets and dinners to weddings, funerals and wakes as well as holiday functions, exercise classes, movie nights, bands and markets the community centre has served its residents well.

“There have been lots of meals served here,” says Jan Bishop, president of the ladies committee.

“The Bawdy Banquet contributed more than half a million dollars to the community through funds raised here, and that is something we have contributed to also.”

One of the few remaining community owned recreation centres in Circular Head, the Irishtown Community Centre is completely self-sustained.

“A lot have served on the committee over the years and a lot have given their services to the community centre in waitressing, catering and working bees.”

Tom O’Halloran and Molly Spinks remain as founding committee members and still contribute their time today alongside committee president Bruce Cornish and many others.

An anniversary celebration will be held at Irishtown Community Centre on Saturday October 14. For more information contact Sue Lodge on 0429 024 370 or 6456 1333.

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