Providing an Outdoor Experience for the Young and not so Young
The Centre has 56 beds available for use by youth members with an additional 7 beds in the wardens’ hut. The buildings are named after the Mourne mountains and the main dormitory block, known as Commedagh, has a total of 32 beds, with male and female toilets. The beds are organised in groups of two and three per room with an additional communal room with ten beds.
The second dormitory block, known as Binnian, has 24 beds, male and female toilets and in addition a small kitchen, fully equipped to cater for 24 persons. Binnian has modern showers and toilets as of September 2018. The beds in Binnian are organised in four rooms as follows: six, six, two and ten.
Each person staying at the Centre should bring with them a sleeping bag. Users are also advised to bring with them a sleeping mat and/or blanket for hygiene purposes. All mattresses were replaced in the last 18 months. (March 2018)
Over the last few years, the centre has hosted a diverse range of visitors including members of the Zimbabwean community in Belfast, Spanish pilgrims ‘discovering’ St Patrick’s birthplace and a number of church based fellowships.
In addition scouts from far and wide have been accommodated. In July 2016 the Centre hosted the National Venture Scout Challenge. 34 Venture Scouts and a team of leaders availed of the facilities at Ballyhornan. The feedback was extremely positive.
“It was an honour to be able to bring a National Event to the Northern Province. Special mention must be made to each scouter throughout the province who sought out and assisted the participants as they were on the road. Thank you to Sarah Taggart (Warden Team Member) who was a fantastic host and made everybody feel so comfortable staying at Ballyhornan Scout Centre, and to Paul Browne (Camp Chief) for facilitating the National Venture Challenge 2016. I’m sure it will be a springboard for many more events in the future.” David Walsh, Co-ordinator
The catering block, known as Bearnagh, has a state of the art kitchen comprising a 6 ring gas cooker, oven, hotplate, electric oven, microwave oven, fridge and freezer. In addition the kitchen boasts a modern dishwasher. There is ample provision of crockery and associated cooking utensils. The canteen has seating for 40 persons.
In addition Binnian has a small kitchen, equipped to cater for 24 persons. (See below)
The main hall, known as Donard measures 17 x 9 metres and allows for indoor games and meetings.
There are 50 conference type chairs and 6 folding tables supplied. In addition the hall has a remote controlled projector screen. Flipchart stands can be made available upon request.
There is a small local shop with limited supplies. Ardglass and Strangford have have supermarket facilities. Where possible visitors are encouraged to use local facilities.
All Centre users are requested to remove their rubbish at the end of their stay.