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THERE was great excitement in Portmarnock recently for the opening of a new guide and scout centre.

The centre, located on the same site as Portmarnock Sport & Leisure Club, has been a dream of both the scouts and guides in the area for over 10 years. 

The project finally became a reality with the turning of the sod in April 2014 and culminated in the opening of the impressive facility almost 18 months later.

The facility is set into native woodland and consists of two large scout and guide halls, as well as a fully kitted kitchen, meeting rooms and storage facilities for scout and guide equipment. Led by the local guide and scout leaders Mary McHale and Peter O‘Kelly, the opening was attended by current members and leaders of the guides and scouts which number over 240.

Senator Jillian Van Turnhout, who was among those in attendance, captured the spirit of guiding and scouting.

“We are empowering the children and young people of tomorrow,” she said. “I call it magic moments.”