Duncan House at the University of East London was announced today as the venue for Team Ireland’s Lodge at the London 2012 Paralympic Games
Irish Team lodgeThe lodge will act as the Irish team base outside the official Paralympic venues and will offer a venue for athletes to meet and relax with fellow team members, as well as their families and friends.
Duncan House is handily situated on Stratford High Street, just opposite the Olympic Park where many of Ireland’s top Paralympians will be aiming for glory at the Games
The announcement was made at a special event attended by Chef de Mission, Liam Harbison, performance director Nancy Chillingworth, UEL vice-chancellor Professor Patrick McGhee and Ireland’s Paralympic discus world champion Catherine O’Neill (pictured above, centre).“With a huge number of supporters set to travel to London to support the Irish Team of 42 athletes, it’s important to have a facility close to Olympic Park to allow access by families and friends to athletes in a way that helps their performance at the Games,” said Harbison.
“After a lengthy search, we settled on Duncan House as the suitable venue, helped also by UEL’s eagerness to build Paralympic awareness amongst the large student population.”
Lodge servicesThe lodge will provide a number of services including Games updates, tickets, refreshments, priority supporter events and Paralympic merchandise. It will be open daily from August 27 to September 7 and accessible by any individual accredited for London 2012, as well as by priority supporters who register directly with Paralympics Ireland. “This is yet another important milestone in our journey to become the number one university for sport in London by 2015,” said McGhee. “We’re thrilled to welcome Paralympics Ireland to our growing family of London 2012 partners.Duncan House is situated right in the middle of the Olympic community and will prove to be an ideal hospitality venue for Irish athletes and supporters alike.” The partnership between Paralympics Ireland and UEL will also provide support and knowledge to students via Q&A forums, sports science workshops and student volunteer positions with the Irish Team.
Sport Northern Ireland
The project is supported by Sport Northern Ireland.“We are delighted to support Paralympics Ireland with this important facility at London 2012, especially with a number of athletes on the Irish Team coming from Northern Ireland, including defending champions Jason Smyth and Michael McKillop,” said Sport Northern Ireland chief executive Eamonn McCartan. “In addition to the Paralympics Ireland Training Camp in Antrim in June, Sport Northern Ireland is delighted that Paralympics Ireland are providing comprehensive support to all aspects of the athletes’ preparation and performance in London as they strive for success at the Games.” The Irish Paralympic Team will be formally announced on June 28 in Dublin and will be followed by the first ever Paralympics Ireland Camp in Northern Ireland (June 28 to July 1)
(Picture: Malcolm McNally, Irish Post)