Sport Ireland Congratulates Patricia Buckley on BeActive Award Nomination

Patricia Buckley

Chief Executive of Sport Ireland, John Treacy, congratulated Roscommon woman Patricia Buckley on her nomination for the European Week of Sport #BeActive Local Hero Award.

The #BeActive Local Hero Award looks to identify an individual who has worked consistently to promote participation in sport and physical activity in their local community and society at large.

Patricia has been the driving force behind the establishment of the very successful parkrun in Castlerea. parkrun is a free, weekly, 5km timed run organised in communities throughout Ireland. parkrun is open to everyone, free and are safe and easy to take part in.

Mr Treacy said: “On behalf of Sport Ireland I would like to congratulate Patricia on her nomination for #BeActive Local Hero Award. Since deciding to establish the weekly event in Castlerea, Patricia has devoted countless hours towards making her local parkrun become a sustained success. The work of volunteers such as Patricia are the foundation on which sport and physical activity are built. I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who dedicates their time to provide opportunities for others to get out and get active. We wish Patricia the very best in the #BeActive awards.”

Patricia began in January 2017 when she decided to bring a parkrun to her community she picked a suitable route that would be accessible and inclusive for runners, joggers, walkers and buggies. A fundraising drive took place to purchase the equipment needed to start the event and the first event was held in April 2017 and has been held every Saturday since.

On hearing of her nomination for the award, Patricia said: “I’m thrilled to have received this nomination for an activity I feel so passionate about and was able to bring to my community for the #BeActive Local Hero Award. Since its establishment earlier this year, the Castlerea parkrun has continued to go from strength to strength. While I’ve been delighted to be involved in driving the project, there’s a team of dedicated volunteers who help out on a weekly basis and this nomination is for them as well. We are all looking forward to Castlerea parkrun continuing to grow to get as many people as possible out and active on a Saturday morning.”

Matt Shields, Country Manager of parkrun Ireland, added: "We are delighted for Patricia and also very proud that one of our volunteers has been nominated for this prestigious award."

The establishment of parkrun in Castlerea has benefitted people in the local area from young to old and has provided an opportunity for all to participate in physical activity leading to a happier and healthier community. This would not have been possible without Patricia and her team of volunteers. 

Patricia will attend the Awards Gala hosted by the European Commission in Marseille on the 11th October where the winner of the #BeActive Local Hero Award will be announced.

Find out more about parkrun here:

European Week of Sport

Sport Ireland is the national co-ordinator for the European Week of Sport in Ireland. The 2017 European Week of Sport and Physical Activity will be celebrated across Ireland from 23rd-30th September 2017.

The European Week of Sport takes place between the 23-30 September and aims to promote sport and physical activity across Europe. The Week is for everyone, regardless of age, background or fitness level. With a focus on grassroots initiatives, it will inspire Europeans to #BeActive on a regular basis and create opportunities in peoples' everyday lives to exercise more. As an annual event, the European Week of Sport will inspire all kinds of creative and exciting events and activities in different countries.