Inside St Michael’s Church, Castletown Finea.

Castletown Finea raising €50,000 to repair church

A small community in north Westmeath has set itself a big goal: that of raising at least €50,000 towards the cost of restoration of their local church.

The roof and some of both the interior and exterior plasterwork at St Michael’s Church at Finea have become damaged due to a leak, said parishioner Margaret Gaffney.

"There’s a leak on the roof, and plaster has fallen off the wall as a result of the leak on the inside," she said.

"Also the floor is in bad condition and some of the windows: there is a lot of work to be done."

It was at the end of April that the community set about starting to raise funds, setting up a GoFundMe page and arranging a number of fundraising activities.

"We have already raised around €20,000," Margaret said.

However, the parish is also applying for grant aid to help carry out the repairs as the church is a listed building, constructed 175 years ago, during the Famine.

If the funding comes through, the intention is that the work will begin early next year.

This weekend is to be a busy one when the parish holds both a major draw and also a table quiz.

The draw takes place in McCormack’s Lounge this Thursday, July 7, at 9pm, and the top prize is two premier tickets to the All-Ireland football semi-final on Sunday in Croke Park, together with an overnight stay and an evening meal at Cassidy’s Hotel in Dublin.

"The total value of the prize is €500," said Margaret.

Second prize is two tickets to Croke Park for the Tailteann Cup final between Westmeath and Cavan and the All-Ireland football semi-final between Galway and Derry.

Third prize is tickets for two adults for a round of golf at Mullingar Golf Club, valued at €80; fourth is a family ticket to Dublin Zoo for two adults and four children, valued at €67.50.

For fifth, the prize is four tickets to Kilbeggan Races, valued at €60; sixth prize, valued at €50, is a year’s membership of Castletown-Finea walking track and seventh is two tickets to Tullamore Show, valued at €40.

The tickets are €20 for a full card of 12 lines or €2 per line or €5 for three lines, and they are available from any of the committee members.

The table quiz takes place the next night, July 8 at Fitzsimons’ Bar, Finea at 9pm. The cost of entry is €40 for a table of four and setting and asking the questions is David Kelly.