Pa and Elaine Bowens Memorial Playground opened in Cloonfad

The community of Cloonfad came together last Sunday to open a memorial playground in honour of much-loved local couple, Pa and Elaine Bowens.

The playground, which is located at the Cloonfad United Football Club pitch on the Ballyhaunis Road, was built in memory of the young married couple and was officially opened last Sunday by their sons, Jason and Adam.

Pa Bowens died tragically in 2015 following an accident and his wife Elaine sadly passed away shortly after in 2017 following a recurrence of brain cancer.

  Elaine had been secretary on a committee which had previously been set up in order to have a much-needed playground built in the area. It was fitting then that the local community rallied together following her death in order to raise money to build the playground in the Bowens’ memory.

The community and surrounding areas including Roscommon, Mayo and Galway, led by the incredible force that is ‘Team Stritch’, raised close to €120,000 to finish the work started by Elaine.

Pa and Elaine’s sons, Jason and Adam, officially opened the playground last Sunday while Mayo-Roscommon Hospice CEO Martina Jennings addressed the crowd before unveiling a plaque.

Speaking to the Roscommon People this week, Elaine’s sister and PRO of the Cloonfad Playground Committee, Kathie Stritch thanked all those who played their part in the project.

  “There was a shockingly huge crowd there on Sunday given the circumstances with the Connacht final. I can only imagine what size the crowd would have been if the match hadn’t been on the same day,” she said.

“We were very lucky with the weather and it was a really good day. It was an emotional day but also very positive.

“We’d like to officially thank the Cloonfad community and surrounding areas and all those who played their part. This would not have been possible without you”.