THe annual fundraiser run for Carlow-Kilkenny Home Care team will now go ahead at its originally-intended location of the Springhill retail park, it has been confirmed.
It will now take place at the earlier time of 12pm. For the past few weeks, it was uncertain whether or not the 10k race would go ahead at all, following a disagreement between race organisers and Woodies DIY, a tenant store of the retail park. The race, which traditionally takes place on the May bank holiday weekend, has started from the Springhill retail park for the last five years.
However, this year, Woodies had expressed a problem with the planned location of the event over apparent congestion problems. The store’s executive area manager Ronan McDonnell said that the race made carpark access difficult, negatively affecting footfall and business.
But other tenants of the park, such as the Aspect Hotel, are involved in sponsorship of the community event. A number of the businesses, including DID Electrical voiced their support the race.
“This 10k run has been going for I don’t know how many years now, and I can tell you that it absolutely does not affect business for us,” said the manager of DID Electrical Martin Cornally.
“We don’t object to this race, we actually welcome it, both for the crowd it attracts out here, and for the cause. The Home Care team is a wonderful organisation, and this is a huge part of their revenue.”
A solution has now been found, with the race now scheduled to take place at the earlier time. This will avoid the peak business hours for the park. A number of other issues, such as the provision of stewards to ensure parking spaces at Woodies remain free of race-goers, and moving the start and finish lines are still being ironed out.
Pat Grogan, one of the race organisers, says that the annual event provides crucial funds for the Carlow-Kilkenny Home Care team.
“Without this fundraiser, our doors would be closed,” says Mr Grogan.
“Last year, it raised €13,000. In previous years, it has been up to €35,000.”