Supporting the Community Since the 1970s
Registered Charity No. 20058913
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Belcarra Community Co-operative Society Limited acts as a focus and catalyst for the social, economic and cultural development of Belcarra and its surrounding areas.
The Belcarra Community Co-operative was set up in 1975 to establish a Group Water Scheme. This would provide a water supply to a rural network of houses with an associated 50 miles of pipe work to take the water to each household.
Sean Nestor, with great foresight, realised the benefits a Group Water Scheme (GWS) would have for the village and surrounding rural community.
The Community Co-op was first called the Belcarra Agricultural Co-Operative Society Ltd which availed of financial support of £11,000 Feoga Grant Aid from Europe. The name was later changed to Belcarra Community Co-Operative Society Ltd. with Charitable status. The Group Water Scheme was completed at a cost of £250,000 in 1979 using water supplied from Walshpool Lake. The GWS originally provided a water supply for 250 homes which, in 2022, has grown to almost 500 homes and is providing one of the cheapest community water supplies in the country.
In 2004, upgrading of the GWS was completed which involved replacing all the pipework. This work was achieved through grant aid of 85% by the Department of Environment and by a substantial contribution from households. The scheme cost over £1,200,000 to upgrade and is now linked to Irish Water’s Lough Mask water supply but the delivery of the water is operated by Belcarra Group Water Scheme.
Various committee members have, over the years, contributed greatly to the success of the Co-operative, giving generously of their talents on a voluntary basis. The Belcarra Community Co-Operative is one of the oldest and most successful organisations in the area and in 2029 will celebrate its 50th anniversary.
Although the Co-operative was originally formed to provide a water supply, its remit has expanded and now includes a broad range of community development activities. Principal among its initiatives are the local heritage centre, voluntary housing scheme, group water scheme, sports and community centre.
Belcarra Community Co-operative Society Ltd manages and maintains the provision of a reliable and quality water supply to the local community.
It promotes and develops Belcarra in every possible way and works closely with Belcarra Community Council, supporting youth projects, sporting activities, tourism, agriculture, enterprise, cultural events and biodiversity.
If you’d like to make contact with the Community Co-op or get involved, please contact Mary B Prendergast at firstname.lastname@example.org