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Balla plans for Summer ahead

A busy Summer of activity for Balla No Name Club kicks off this weekend. The club has a four-point plan that it wants to implement over the coming weeks and the first aspect of this will begin on Sunday when it will stage a food and craft fair.

The club is looking to bring the Balla community and local service providers together by staging the food and crafts fair.  Local food producers and crafts people are being provided with the opportunity to offer their produce to Balla residents at the fair. The club has contacted local people who grow fruit and veg, and those involved in craft activities such as art, crochet and knitting to offer them the opportunity to use the market as a means to display their produe and craft to the community and also to generate business.

Brendan Conwell, Balla No Name Club Chairman, said the club hosts and hostesses are using the food and crafts fair as an opportunity to bring the community together during these tough economic times and encourage people to support their neighbours. The fair is taking place in Balla’s market square in the Hearts and Soul Studio above the Credit Union and will run from 11.30am to 3pm every Sunday.

This is the first aspect of the club’s four point plan. The second is addressing the issue of road safety. Around 5,000 cars are travelling on Claremorris to Castlebar road that passes through Balla. Mr Conwell said the club’s hosts and hostesses have identified the need for a pedestrian crossing on the very busy road. “The teenage members see everyday when they are on lunchtime at school just how busy the road is and how difficult it is to negotiate,” he explains. The hosts and hostesses have lobbied Mayo County Council and local councillors with a view to having a pedestrian crossing in place when they return to school in September. The issue was on the agenda at a recent meeting of Mayo County Council and the matter is being advanced.

Balla’s market square is the focus of the third point of the plan. It was the focal point of what was once regarded as one of the best market towns in the region but has now fallen into a state of disrepair, with potholes a common feature within it. The club now want to restore the square to its original glory and has identified EU funding it believes can be provided for such work.  The club hosts and hostesses will be lobbying Mayo County Council to pursue the funding and the project.

And road safety is once again a feature for the club as it goes about pursuing the fourth point of its plan. On Saturday, July 23rd, the club will be involved in the organisation of the annual Balla 10km run/walk. It is working with Noel Gibbons, Road Safety Officer with Mayo County Council, and will be creating awareness of road safety for the pedestrians and joggers who will be participating in the event. Every entrant will be provided with a high-visibility vest by the hosts and hostesses and a goodie pack will also be put together for them. The entry fee for the run/walk will be €15 and a each entrant will be making a donation to Mayo Autism through their entry fee.