Board members inspect Corrard House in west Cavan
Members of Cavan Monaghan Education and Training Board (CMETB) have visited Corrard House near Dowra to inspect the site and further consider what to do with a property once earmarked for a youth outdoor activity centre.
Purchased in the early 80s by Cavan VEC, with €40,000 spent in renovations subsequently, the full potential of the property has never been realised and it has since fallen into a state of significant disrepair.
Board members visited the west Cavan property when they travelled to nearby Loughan House Open Prison in Blacklion for their May monthly meeting last week.
The decision to inspect the site came after a recommendation to sell it was put before the April meeting of the board, but then challenged. The property comprises a two-storey premises and 10 acres of land.
Officials at the Department of Education met with chief executive Fiona McGrath, chair Carmel Brady and buildings officer Bernie Power back in January and advised selling Corrard House.
At the April meeting, which took place in Ballybay, Ms McGrath informed members that she and Ms Power has visited Corrard House to find it had deteriorated to such an extent it posed a potential danger to the public, with the pitched roof now collapsed.
At one stage the precursor to CMETB, Cavan VEC, planned to seek funding of the order of €2 million through Peace III and Fáilte Ireland for their envisaged project. They also applied for planning permission to deliver a major refurbishment and extension to include facilities and dormitories, as well as outdoor facilities and an area for activities such as archery and quad bike tracks. Once developed it was hoped the new facility could accommodate up to 50 students on overnight camps and excursions, and have the capacity to cater for hundreds on a day visit basis.
Another existing storey and a half outbuilding was to be converted for staff accommodation.
In the interim Corrard House also hosted a playschool, but this too fell by the wayside, and the once grand plan for the property was finally shelved after VECs were amalgamated in 2010, coupled with financial pressures brought about as a result of the economic crash.
A spokesperson for the ETB confirmed a visit had taken place (May 16). They added that at this stage there are “no further updates at this time”.