The River Suir is a beautiful natural resource which is underused and there has been a notable disconnect of the community with the river especially in Clonmel due to flooding. The Outdoor Community Sports Hub aims to connect the community especially its disadvantaged areas and young people with the River Suir and water-based activities. This project is funded by Sport Ireland through Dormant Accounts Funding and is also supported by Tipperary County Council with further support from other stakeholders such as the HSE, Canoeing Ireland and Clonmel Canoe Club.
The development of the Community Sports Hub commenced in 2015 the early phases saw significant infrastructure development with the construction of the Slalom Course and rehabilitation of the Weir. Alongside the development of the significant infrastructure TSP continues to provide support for the development of the Hub through training and education and targeted initiatives such as instructor competencies, participant skills training (taster sessions, summer camps and schools paddling programmes), club development, events, promotion, engagement and awareness. A dedicated Sport Hub Co-ordinator is in place to drive the project. Most recently, TSP has extended the outdoor community sports hub to include urban adventure activities such as horse riding, orienteering, outdoor learning programme, hill walking and mountain biking.
In recent times, through the development of the Hub and the provision of events, resources and training and education there is a visible reconnection of the community with the River Suir. The Outdoor Community Sports Hub in Clonmel forms a significant part of the River Suir Blueway project and the future development of Suir Island as a recreation amenity (Green Heart) of Clonmel. The Outdoor Community Sports Hub was officially opened in April 2017 by John Treacy, Sport Ireland.