Royal & Prior Comprehensive in Raphoe has secured funding for works on its sports hall, it has been confirmed.

“I am delighted to be able to confirm the news that Royal & Prior has secured financial support for much-needed repairs to its sports hall,” Donegal TD Joe McHugh said.

“I have spoken to principal Howard Welch to share the news after the Department of Education confirmed a grant under emergency works for the sports hall.

“It is a massive leap forward for the school. The roof is badly in need of being replaced and this grant will give Royal and Prior the security to engage with architects and designers to devise a plan for the hall and to work with the Department to see it through," he added.

Minister McHugh met Mr Welch and visited the school on a number of occasions and also raised the need for major repairs with Education Minister Richard Bruton.

Minister McHugh said: “This school is renowned for the standard of badminton players it has produced – a long line of champions, not least Olympian Chloe Magee who spent many hours in the school sports hall on her long road to international stardom.

“There are 575 pupils at the school, including 37 boarders and it is only right that they have facilities that live up to the high standards of sports stars that have been produced here down through the years.

“I also want to thank Minister Bruton who is only too well aware of the difficulties that the school has run in to and now the Department is stepping up to the mark to support Royal and Prior, the principal, staff and pupils and their dreams of producing more world beaters."

He added: “An agreement like this is a huge boost for Royal and Prior and pupils, parents and staff should know this is recognition that their needs are being heard and acted on.

“It sets Royal and Prior on the right path to developing facilities to host badminton events and it will create the right atmosphere to inspire the next generation of champions and olympians.”

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