The development of an Exhibition arena and Integrated Resource Centre.
Virginia has just been approved for the maximum matching funding of €500,000 by Minister Phil Hogan, T.D., Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, informed Cavan-Monaghan Leader to approve funding to Virginia Show Centre Ltd for the development of an Exhibition Hall and Integrated Resource Centre, a facility will comprise a large enclosed exhibition space, a community kitchen and associated dining hall, a craft and tourist shop and external space for farmer’s market’s, office accommodation, training rooms and meeting rooms, computer facilities and a museum, and ancillary facilities that were identified in a feasibility study in 2008. The funding is being provided under the Basic Services for the Economy and Rural Population measure of the Rural Development Programme 2007-2013 and is administered by Cavan Monaghan LEADER (Breffni Integrated Ltd and Monaghan Integrated Development Ltd) 049 4338477.
The committee has identified the following key objectives.
To provide for the social and educational needs through the provision of social infrastructure and facilities and to encourage cooperation between local community groups to achieve common goals;
To promote interest, education, knowledge and pride in the rural heritage including the natural, historical and architectural heritage found in Virginia and the surrounding area;
To encourage economic activity in the area with a strong focus on the development of agri-tourism, and agri related businesses.
To develop facilities and infrastructure which will service the needs of the annual Virginia Agricultural Show and other organisations including local and national organisations such as breed societies.
Centre’s Location & Facilities
Virginia Show Centre Ltd. will be based at the Showgrounds located to the rear of Main Street, Virginia and adjacent to Virginia College. In addition to the annual agricultural show the Showgrounds is used for a variety of community purposes including the annual Vintage Fair Day and the Pumpkin Festival as well as dedicated classes and other intermittent and fundraising activities. The Virginia Show Centre will be a facility for the entire community, from the very young to the old and will foster a new sense of place among the existing established community in the Virginia hinterland and the new residents in the area.
Virginia Show Centre Ltd is wholly owned by Virginia Agricultural Society Incorporated.
Virginia Show Society was established in 1941 and is made up of 200 members. The Society bought the Showgrounds in the 1940’s and built the Farmers Hall in the 1950’s. It then built Virginia Vocational School opened in 1962 and handed it to Cavan VEC. They have facilitated three major extensions to the school which has grown as the area has unprecedented population growth. The show committee draws its membership primarily from the southeast Cavan area, mainly from the farming community in Virginia and the surrounding areas of: Bailieborough, Ballyjamesduff, Billis, Castlerahan, Carnaross, Cross, Killinkere, Lurgan, Maghera, Mullagh, Munterconnaught, and Oldcastle and is very much cross community in nature.
The Committee which now spans in some cases three generations of the same family has successfully run Virginia Agricultural Show now for 72 Years. The Show society is run on a voluntary capacity by its members, is one of the premier Agricultural shows to take place in the country annually. Exhibitors and attendees travel from all parts of Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland and overseas. The Show itself comprises over 400 classes and 3,500 exhibits annually including the annual Baileys Irish Champion Cow Competition now in its 30h year. There are thousands of photographs on our webpage and on facebook. www.virginiashow.com, facebook/virginiashow / Twitter @virginiashow 049 8547197
To achieve this, matching funding is crucial. We invite you to join us by making a financial contribution to this project. Please contribute to our fundraising and we will tailor our acknowledgement to suit your requirements, Virginia Show Centre Chairman: Eamonn O Connell 086 1012382, Secretary: Donal Brady 086 8299713 or by contacting any of the committee members. Press : Kathleen Duffy 046 9245981/087 2703618