Belfast Telegraph

Co Tyrone Euromillions winner Margaret Loughrey bans children's football club from playing on pitch on her land

By Amy Molloy

A Co Tyrone Euromillions winner has banned a football club from playing on her land.

Margaret Loughrey won €32m back in 2013 and previously revealed plans to build a €10m sporting complex for her community.

She laid the foundations for her plans when she purchased local football pitch, the Brae Field.

Now, however, she has given the boot to a soccer club which had used the pitch as their home ground for 28 years.

Sion Swifts FC are appealing for millionaire Maggie to allow them to return, as they are currently homeless.

The Northern Ireland club have even set up a fundraising page to help them get a new pitch, provided Ms Loughrey doesn’t have a change of heart.

Danny Gallagher, a Sion Swifts official, took to Facebook to express his disappointment at her decision.

He wrote: “For 45 years of my life, I have known the Brae Field as my ‘Field of Dreams’.

“With sadness, deep regret, and tears in my eyes, I have to say that I am devastated that we will never be back at my Field of Dreams”.

"The verbal abuse, with such venom and hatred, that was hurtled at myself, players and kids on Thursday evening at the Brae was nothing short of disgraceful as we were told by the current owner to "Get off my F......g land" with some kids going home very shaken by the incident."

This is not the first time the woman, from Strabane in Co Tyrone, has caused controversy amongst clubs in the Red Hand county.

Shortly after hitting the jackpot in 2013, she banned Sion Mills Cricket Club from playing on the land – despite the fact they had used it for almost 150 years.

Contacted by the Ulster Herald, Ms Loughrey told the paper: "People can say what they want...the paper can print what it wants. I don't care. I have no comment to make."

Belfast Telegraph Digital


From Belfast Telegraph