Our History in a Nutshell

Ballymacash Sports Academy was born from Ballymacash Rangers Football Club in 2017.

Ballymacash Rangers Football club served the community of Ballymacash and local young people for over 30 years. It was formed in 1984 by young men in the area who wanted to play organised football.  


Following a community led approach they replaced what was a bonfire site at Rushmore Park, into a home for the club, now known as ‘The Bluebell’. This was part of a wider community effort to reduce the number of 11th July bonfires in the area.

Through the club, thousands of young people have been engaged in football over the years and our teams having played football at Mid Ulster Intermediate A level for over 20 years, the club gained promotion to the NI Football League in 2022.

At the beginning of 2017, we embraced the fact that developing sports in the community meant developing stronger communities. We began to work in partnership with other local organisations and plan for better facilities, more sports activities and become a truly accessible Sports Academy at The Bluebell site.

We believe sporting participation and social cohesion go hand in hand and in turn, this makes communities stronger and healthier.

Our Aims

Our aims are:

  • to increase participation in sports for those for all ages, gender and abilities
  • to develop sporting skills at a competitive level for an affordable price
  • to establish links between schools, sports clubs and the wider community
  • to improve both physical and mental health for all participants
  • to create job opportunities
  • to contribute to the community development and its regeneration

Community Share Offers 2018 and 2022

Ballymacash Sports Academy Ltd is a Community Benefit Society registered in 2017 (IP000442), a Registered Charity (NIC107431) and a Social Enterprise.

With the support of Co Operative Alternatives BSA have successfully launched two Community Share Offers, where everyone had the opportunity to purchase “Community Shares” and become a part owner of the Society. 

Through these Community Share Offers we raised over £135,000 and gained over 400 member owners.

We are proud to say that we are the first of its kind in Northern Ireland, a Community Owned Sports and Recreational Facility. We don’t want to be the last and we believe we can be, and we are, a model for many other sports clubs and communities.