Meeting to be held in the new year regarding future of Community Games

Mayor of Athlone, John Dolan, says he expects a meeting between AIT and Community Games organisers to take place early next year to decide whether the town will continue to host the competition.

News broke on Monday, October 24, that the Community Games finals were to move from Athlone Institute of Technology, which has hosted the games for the past seven years, due to a disagreement between the bodies.

Community Games president, Gerard Davenport, attributed the decision at the time to a “perceived change in relationship from a partnership to a strictly commercial arrangement". Cllr Dolan is confident that an agreement can be reached.

"I have met Ciarán Ó Catháin on it and we are hoping a meeting can take place in the early new year," he said this week. "AIT for their part are more than willing to do whatever they can to host the Community Games again. There are even plans to improve the facilities at AIT this coming year.

"The organisers of the games have committed to going to Abbotstown for next year, but we will look to sit down with them in the early new year to see what we can do moving forward.

"It would be a loss for Athlone, because it is a prestigious event to host. I am not being biased, but I believe Athlone and AIT is the best place for it. I would put the whole situation down to a lack of communication, and I think if it is resolved we have all learned lessons from it."

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