In October 2018, at a Special General Meeting, the club membership sanctioned the commencement of Phase 1 of our Development Plan. This plan involves the provision of three full-sized playing pitches on our site, one of which would be a 4G astroturf surface. Since this meeting, our Development Committee, in consultation with our engineers, reviewed other facilities, undertook an updated needs analysis of our pitch infrastructure and further examined the demographics of our membership and our community. This analysis formed the basis of our planning application to the local authority which was authorised in June 2019.
Central to this analysis is the rapid growth in membership we have recently experienced. Bishopstown has regenerated and we are presently catering for over 1,000 players. New housing is also coming on stream in our area for the first time in decades so we predict that these numbers may grow. This rapid growth in our membership is one of our many success stories over the last number of years. Since we relaunched our Primary and Cúl Maroon sections in 2016, it has become apparent that the already overstretched facilities we currently have are not, and will not be sufficient to meet the needs of our current and projected membership both today and into the future.
Our current pitch infrastructure consists of two full-sized games fields (Pitch 1 and 2) allied to our training pitch (Pitch 3). Facilitating the playing needs of over 1,000 players and 50 teams is proving very difficult and these difficulties result in our club renting facilities elsewhere or teams sharing pitches for training sessions. The task of scheduling standard weekly activities within our current infrastructure is now becoming increasingly difficult and problematic; we simply require more playing space. We believe that such a solution must be based within our facility which is centred within our community. Simply put, if we don’t develop a third full-sized field now, we will not be able to provide for the demands that the future is going to present.
Our Phase 1 Development Plan alleviates these provision issues by providing our club with three full- sized playing pitches, one which will have a 4G all- weather surface which will service our playing and training needs in the winter months particularly. This will mean that the Training Pitch will be levelled, realigned and extended to become a regulation sized pitch and Pitch 1 will be developed as a full-sized 4G astroturf pitch.
As part of a longer-term Development Plan, it is planned that work will commence on this project in the autumn of 2020 and so begin a new chapter in the history of the GAA in Bishopstown.
As part of our campaign to raise the funds needed for this development, the Club is launching a number of initiatives. Obviously, these initiatives involve your financial support. We do not make the request lightly, however, we do make it earnestly and from the heart, because this is a very important community undertaking.
These new pitches are being built for everyone, but it is you, our members, friends, and supporters, who are the cement that binds a community together. Without your support and commitment, no development project on its own, can ever hope to create a community. Together we can deliver this state of the art facility for our Club and the people of our community to enjoy for generations to come.
1. Bond Scheme
A bond is a loan to Bishopstown GAA Club. This loan will be repaid to the bond holders over a 10 year period. There will be a legal agreement signed by Bishopstown GAA Club ensure bond holders are guaranteed repayment of their bond. In effect, if you purchase a bond you are giving Bishopstown GAA Club an interest free loan.
Bishopstown GAA Club will sell bonds as a way of raising the finance for this project. We need people (club members, parents of children who are playing members, members of the community etc) to buy these bonds. A bond has a cost of €5,000. The club guarantees to pay each bond holder €500 per annum over the following 10 years from the issue of the bond.
Bonds are valued at €5,000 and can be paid by cash or cheque. If you are interested in assisting with this very valuable project which will have such a positive impact on our community as a whole then please contact us. We will have a team solely focused on selling bonds and they are contactable at email@example.com.
2. Donation Scheme
We are asking each family or friend involved in, or with an affinity to, the club to donate €750 towards the development project. Under Irish revenue rules, an approved sports body can claim tax relief on donations made in relation to a project approved by the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS).
When someone paying tax under the PAYE system makes a donation, it is considered to be net of tax. So, if someone pays tax at 40%, the €750 would be considered to be 60% of the donation (similarly, if someone pays tax at 20% the €750 is considered as 80% of the donation). In both cases, the club can claim the tax on the donation directly from the Revenue Commissioners.
All benefactors will be honoured by having their name inscribed on our prominently-displayed patrons’ board, in the new development. An important point to note is that one of the rules of the tax rebate scheme that revenue offers is that no prize incentive can be offered; if, for example, we were to run a raffle in conjunction with this donation fundraiser, we would lose up to 67% of the value of each donation.
It is also important for everyone to understand that this scheme is completely separate to the day to-day running costs of the club. Memberships will still need to be paid to keep the club solvent while fundraising for the new development progresses.
A financial sacrifice on this scale is not asked lightly of anyone. We, the fundraising committee and the club executive, are very aware that €750 is a lot of money to donate, but, to put it at its simplest, the success of this exciting development depends on the Club raising a significant portion of the funding through our membership and friends of the club. Much research has been carried out into similar developments by sports clubs over the past few years and the vast majority have required a significant level of donation from members and friends who understand the importance of sport in the life of a community.
There are a number of ways that you can pay the €750. All payments can be paid through our online secured system through a link on our website (just like how most people pay their membership). This link will include the three payment options plus a short form that requires to be filled in so that the club can claim the rebate from the revenue at the end of the year. The link will be sent to all members in January to make the process as simple as we possibly can. All queries regarding donations can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. The links are also available here:
3. Corporate Sponsorship
We are offering local companies the opportunity to support the Bishopstown community and in turn reap the benefits of the large footfall our social media and club environs experience daily. Our corporate sponsorship package is available for a once-off payment of €5,000. Companies interested in supporting the project will receive the following benefits in return:
- Corporate signage at club entrance and in the clubhouse
- 2 prominent pitch hoardings
- 2 years advertisement carried on our rebranded club website
- 1 year of monthly Facebook promotions on the club Facebook page
- Free entry into our annual golf classic for one team for one year
Our corporate team will be calling on local businesses and asking for their assistance in delivering this project for our local community.
4. Online Lotto
For those members who do not wish to buy a bond or offer a donation, we would encourage them to subscribe to a Lotto Bundle which will be on offer next January when paying your club membership online. This online lotto will offer members a €100 bundle which will allow members to pick a set of numbers for the year and be automatically entered into our new online lotto. This offers members the chance to win a weekly cash prize whilst still supporting our project. Members, if they don’t take up the bundle, also have the facility to play the lotto online weekly. Please find the link here