Plans are being drawn up to create a €750,000 visitor centre to commemorate the man whose name is synonymous with Gaelic football.
The centre is to be built in Dunmanway, Co Cork, where Sam Maguire was born.
The local community council, which is the driving force behind the project, is hoping to build the centre within the West Cork town’s GAA grounds.
A feasibility study, undertaken by Tourism Development International, is nearing completion, which will provide Dunmanway Community Council with a viable plan to develop the project.
Community council spokes- man Tommy Collins said it’s envisaged that the project will cost in the region of €750,000.
He said the majority of the money needed would come from West Cork Development Partnership with the remainder from local fundraising.
“This project is envisaged as a celebration of the life and ethos of Sam Maguire. He gave his name to the most coveted trophy in Irish sport; thus his name has become the most widely known of all the Gaelic personalities in Irish sport. It is fitting that Dunmanway should be the place most suitable to celebrate his memory,” Mr Collins said.
He said the centre will develop a museum of all memorabilia associated with Sam Maguire.
“It will have interactive media presentations on him as well as other items of national and local significance. Provision will be made for its use by other kindred cultural and sporting groups in the area, such as GAA, Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, historical societies, heritage groups etc,” Mr Collins said.
He said it was planned to retain an archive of GAA-related materials linking in with Croke Park and Thurles museums.
“The centre will have a video theatre for educational purposes to accommodate school tours and as a demonstration area for arts and crafts. We want to celebrate Sam Maguire and all things Irish to include language, dance, crafts, and history,” Mr Collins said. “In the long term, it will be self-financing and beneficial to Dunmanway and the wider West Cork area.”
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