Our Arts Centre
Our 150+ seater multi-purpose arts centre is located in the former Church of Ireland on the southern edge of Watergrasshill. The arts centre is run by the Watergrasshill Community Association which was formed in 1980. The Association is multi denominational governed by a constitution and is also a registered charity. The Church was deconsecrated in 1990 and the Association now has a long term lease on the building. As you can see from the layout plan we have added a new building to the rear to change the use into a modern theatre tastefully designed to recognise the architectural heritage of the former church. The new section contains a Green room, toilets and a cafe with well lit corridors leading to the main theatre. Finance was provided by local fundraising, grants from our local development company Avondhu/Blackwater Partnership and a bank loan.
Why First Fruits Arts Centre? The Board of First Fruits was founded in 1711 by Queen Ann to build and improve Anglican Church of Ireland property in Ireland. Many of the Churches we see today were built in the late 18th and early 19th century, mostly of Gothic design. The Church of Killaspugmullane as it was known (this was part of the civil parish of Watergrasshill) was one of the last Churches to be built by the Board of First Fruits.
Earliest records show that there was a Church on this site in 1798 and the present church was opened in 1836. The famous Pain brothers George and James were involved in the design and build of this Church. The Church is built in yellow sandstone which was sourced in a quarry to the west of Watergrasshill village. The stone masons were an O’Regan family from Kildinan.
THE ARTS CENTRE CAN PROVIDE…
- Drama (An intimate theatre with good lines of sight)
- Musical recitals (excellent acoustics)
- Presentations (wired for IT, PowerPoint etc)
- Art classes
- Wedding events
- School planning (self catering available)
- Corporate training/Business meetings (see what we offer)
- Fashion shows (catwalk available)
- Wednesday club
- Meetings Etc. (very comfortable environment)
- Retractable tier seating, creating a versatile multi-purpose centre.
- Located in a secluded noise free area.
- Wired for state of the art IT facilities.
- Fully fitted out café with appliances.
- Excellent Acoustics in main theatre
- Just 10 minutes from Jack Lynch Tunnel.
- Ample free parking.
- Stage units can be quickly and easily reconfigured to suit Drama, Dance, Music, and Fashion.
- Great Ambiance: A unique historic stone structure.
CORPORATE TRAINING/BUSINESS MEETINGS/SCHOOL PLANNING
The arts centre has the ideal ambiance for your meeting/ training as it is located in a quiet rural setting on the edge of Watergrasshill Village just 10 minutes from the Jack lynch Tunnel. It also has ample free parking. The building is wired for the most modern information communication technology, with furniture to suit multiple arrangements. The entire building, both renovated and new, has state of the art heating and lighting. The main theatre has seating for 150+ and as the seating is retractable it can be adjusted to suit smaller groups providing more working floor space.
There are two other spacious rooms which are ideal for presentations or workshops. Sound proofing has been a feature of the original design. The Café is fully fitted out for catering and food can be provided by you or by outside caterers. Reasonable rates are available!