Lancashire GAA

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Lancashire GAA
CLG Lancasír
Lancashire-crest.gif
Founded: 1920s
County: Great Britain
Nickname: Lancs
Colours: Yellow, blue and white
Grounds: Old Bedians, East Didsbury
Playing kits
Standard colours
Lancashire within England

The Lancashire County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) (Irish: Cumann Lúthchleas Gael Coiste Lancasír), or Lancashire GAA, is one of the county boards outside Ireland and is responsible for the running of Gaelic games in the North West of England and on the Isle of Man. With Scotland, Warwickshire, Gloucestershire, Hertfordshire, London and Yorkshire, the board makes up the British Provincial Board. The Lancashire board oversees the Lancashire Junior Championship, the Lancashire Junior League, and the first and second division of the Pennine League.[1]

The current Executive Committee consists of a chair, secretary and treasurer, and the County has two representatives on the British Provincial Council Executive Committee.

The County crest depicts the Celtic cross and shamrock, the red rose of Lancashire and a ship representing the voyage taken by all of those who have left Ireland to make Lancashire their home or the place they are passing through. The crest was designed by former County Secretary Seán Hackett in 2007.


County Board 2017

Cathaoirleach/Chairperson: Shane Walsh (St.Brendans)
Leas Chathaoirleach/Vice-Chairperson: James Wray (St.Lawrences)
Rúnái/Secretary: Michael Warr (St.Lawrences)
Cisteoir/Treasurer: Kieran Gleeson (St.Brendans)
Oif Chaid Poiblí/Public Relations Officer: Cathal Harkin (St.Lawrences)
Runai Cunta/Assistant Secretary- Cluchi Bainisteoir/ Fixtures Manager: George O'Rourke (St.Peters)
Oif Iomanicht Forbartha/Development Officer: Stan Murray-Hession (Fullen Gaels)
Oifigigh Cosanta Leanaí: Kieran Gleeson (St.Brendans)
Oif Oige/Youth Officer: Brendan Deacy (St.Lawrences)
Oif Gaeilge agus Cultúir / Officer for Irish Language and Culture: Niall Farren (Oisins)

County Board 2016

Chairperson: Shane Walsh (St.Brendans)
Vice-Chairperson: James Wray (St.Lawrences)
Secretary: Michael Warr (St.Lawrences)
Assistant Secretary/Fixtures Secretary: Niall Farren (Oisins)
Treasurer: Brian Johnston (St.Brendans)
Child Protection Officer: Kieran Gleeson (St.Brendans)
Hurling Development Officer: Richie Barry (Wolfe Tones)
Officer for Irish Language and Culture: N/A
Youth Officer: Brendan Deacy (St.Lawrences)
PRO: Cathal Harkin (St.Lawrences)
County Health and Well Being Committee: Danny McDonagh, Barry Morris (John Mitchels) Kieran Gleeson
British Provincial Council Delegates: Kieran Gleeson, Shane Walsh
Council Delegates: Kieran Gleeson, Seamus Kerlin (Oisins) Johnny Plant (St.Brendans), Shane Walsh
British Congress Delegates: Kieran Gleeson, Shane Walsh, Cathal Harkin, Sean Hopkins (St.Peters)


Clubs

There are ten affiliated clubs, a majority of which are based in Manchester and Liverpool. As of 2010, the clubs participating were:[2]

Name (Irish) Name (English) Sport Teams Location Pitch
Cumann Peile Uilf Tóin Learpholl Wolfe Tones Football Men / Ladies Liverpool Wavertree Park[3]
Cumann Lúthchleas Gael Séan Mistéil John Mitchel's Football Men / Ladies Liverpool Greenbank[4]
Ellan Vannin Gaels Isle of Man Gaels Football Men Isle of Man GAA Grounds, Douglas[5]
Fullen Gaels Hurling Fullen Gaels Hurling / Camogie Men / Ladies Manchester Hough Grounds[6]
Naomh Ánna St Ann's Football Men Manchester Turn Moss[7]
Naomh Bréanainn St Brendan's Football Men Manchester Hough Grounds[8]
Naomh Lábhrais na Piarsaigh St Lawrence's Football Men Manchester Turn Moss[9]
Naomh Pádraig St Patrick's Football Men Chester Blacon Avenue[10]
Naomh Peadar St Peter's Football Men Manchester Hough Grounds[11]
Cumann Lúthchleas Gael Oisín Oisín's Football Men / Ladies Manchester Old Bedians[12]

Gaelic football

Football is the dominant sport in Lancashire GAA. The county featured in four successive All-Britain Junior Football Championships, losing the 2009 final but winning in 2010, 2011 (Lancashire 1-11, Warwickshire 0-04) and 2012 (Lancashire 2-10, London 0-10). In 2010 and 2011 Lancashire reached the semi-finals of the All-Ireland Junior Football Championship, losing to Kerry GAA in 2010 and to Kildare in 2011.[13]

Senior Club Championship Roll of Honour

  • 1951 Oisins
  • 1952 John Mitchels
  • 1953 Oisins
  • 1954 -
  • 1955 Shannon Rangers
  • 1956 -
  • 1957 Oisins
  • 1958 St Wilfreds
  • 1959 Oisins
  • 1960 Shannon Rangers
  • 1961 Harp & Shamrocks
  • 1962 Harp & Shamrocks
  • 1963 -
  • 1964 St Brendans
  • 1965 John Mitchels
  • 1966 John Mitchels
  • 1967 St Brendans
  • 1968 St Brendans
  • 1969 Oisins
  • 1970 St Brendans
  • 1971 St Brendans
  • 1972 St Brendans
  • 1973 De La Salle
  • 1974 De La Salle
  • 1975 St Brendans
  • 1976 Oisins
  • 1977 Oisins
  • 1978 St Brendans
  • 1979 St Brendans
  • 1980 St Brendans
  • 1981 Oisins
  • 1982 Oisins
  • 1983 St Brendans
  • 1984 St Brendans
  • 1985 St Brendans
  • 1986 St Brendans
  • 1987 St Peters
  • 1988 St Brendans
  • 1989 St Brendans
  • 1990 St Brendans
  • 1991 St Brendans
  • 1992 St Peters
  • 1993 St Peters
  • 1994 Oisins
  • 1995 St Peters
  • 1996 St Brendans
  • 1997 St Peters
  • 1998 St Lawerences
  • 1999 John Mitchels
  • 2000 St Peters
  • 2001 St Peters
  • 2002 Oisins
  • 2003 St Lawerences
  • 2004 St Peters
  • 2005 St Peters
  • 2006 Oisins
  • 2007 John Mitchels
  • 2008 John Mitchels
  • 2009 John Mitchels
  • 2010 St Peters
  • 2011 John Mitchels
  • 2012 St Peters
  • 2013 John Mitchels
  • 2014 John Mitchels
  • 2015 John Mitchels
  • 2016 John Mitchels
  • 2017 Oisins

Total

St.Brendans:18, Oisins:13, John Mitchels:12, St.Peters:11, St.Lawrences:2, Shannon Rangers:2, Harp & Shamrock:2, De La Salle:2, St.Wilfrids:1


Honours

  • All Britain Junior Football Championship (3)
    • 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013; runners-up 2009

Lancashire All-Star Team 2018

This team was picked by Lancashire PRO Cathal Harkin.

  1. Paul Noone (Oisins)
  2. Ryan Devlin (Oisins)
  3. Aidan McVerry (Oisins)
  4. Rory McLaughlin (Oisins)
  5. Gary Morris (St.Peters)
  6. Stephen Rafferty (St.Brendans)
  7. Eoin Watts (St.Lawrences)
  8. Niall Donnelly (Oisins)
  9. Ray Addis (Wolfe Tones)
  10. Paddy McCoy (St.Brendans)
  11. Niall McCartan (John Mitchels)
  12. PJ Magee (Oisins)
  13. John Huane (St.Marys)
  14. Conor King (Oisins)
  15. Darren Russell (John Mitchels)

Lancashire Player of the Year: Conor King (Oisins)
Lancashire Supporters Player of the Year: Jason Hurst (St.Peters)

GAA History in Liverpool

The first match recorded in Liverpool was in 1901, where Liverpool Young Ireland's defeated Manchester Martyrs. According to Tommy Walsh there were 300 in attendance including the Special Branch, who were no doubt keeping a watchful eye. By 1906, both hurling and camogie were played in Liverpool and were played in the Aintree area, where the famous racecourse is located now. Later, the Young Irelands changed their name to Eire Og and then to St.Patricks by 1940.

Today, if you had the finest of Liverpool up against the finest of Kilkenny on a hurling field; there would be only one outcome. In 1912 however, the two teams met in the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Semi-Final. The Cats won by 4-03 to 1-03, the game was played in Liverpool however unfortunately the exact location was not recorded and no one in the county board was about in that time to clarify things!

By 1924 a new GAA ground was used at Dingle Brook Farm in West Derby. Two years later, the Provincial Council was formed and the only two affiliated boards were London and Liverpool GAA. The two boards fielded teams annually, in both hurling and football, to play each other for the P.J. O'Connor and Sam Maguire cups respectively. The hurling matches were normally won by Liverpool, while the football games were typically won by the London team.

By 1926, the Liverpool County Board (formed before the Lancashire County Board), secured a pitch at Thingwall Road in Broadgreen. They were warned that if there were any fighting during games then they would lose the pitch! The following year the teams who were playing around Liverpool were as follows:


  • Granuaile (Southport)
  • Eire Og (today's John Mitchels)
  • Exiles
  • Gaels
  • Thomas Ashes
  • Earlestown
  • Terence McSwineys
  • Kathleen ni Houlihans (camogie, they represented the Gaelic League and St.Brigid's, Manchester)

By 1927, the Secretary's report stated that there were five hurling, two football and two camogie clubs affiliated. Eleven years later, the teams in Lancashire were:

  • Eire Og (hurling and football)
  • Sean O'Donovans (hurling and football)
  • Patrick Pearses (football)
  • Kevin Barry's (football)

During World War 2, the GAA in Lancashire had its ups and downs, one of the pluses was a new club being formed in Wigan.

Between 1948 and 1950, John Mitchels GAC was formed, however according to Tommy Walsh, they didn't succeed in attracting the young Irish men into their ranks. They dissolved into the St.Patrick's Club, St.Patrick's hurling and John Mitchel's Gaelic football. Peter Delaney was one of the founders of the John Mitchels club and he became secretary of the larger club. By 1953, games were played at Yew Tree Field, Preston were playing gaelic games and Lancashire got to the All-Ireland Junior Final, losing to Cork. Two years later, gaelic games were being played at Thingwall Hall (St.Edward's Orphanage) and after that at Sefton Rugby Club, West Derby.

There were many great players to grace the John Mitchels team over the years, however none more so than the great James McCartan snr and his brother Dan, as well as a smattering of Derry county players. The reason for this was during the gaelic exhibition games at Wembley, John Mitchels took part in the festivities against London Shamrocks as a feeder for the bigger inter-county games. Of course making the long trip south resulted in not bring a full 15, so the aforementioned players togged out for the Liverpool team.

By the 1970s and 80s the economic situation was improving in Ireland, therefore the influx of Irish playing gaelic games in Britain was declining. By 1978 there were 40 underage games played at Newsham Park. A very strong group of families were active. Sadly, the 1980s saw hurling die in Liverpool as well as the underage. On the plus side however, 1982 saw comprehensive fixtures being first produced, thanks to Peter Gallagher.

John Mitchels adult team soon began to find it hard to field but thanks to Barry Morris, who also played with the club, reformed the club and affiliated it to the Lancashire County Board. The club of course, reached Croke Park to play in the All-Ireland Junior Final in 2009. [14]

Hurling

Lancashire competed in the Lory Meagher Cup (Tier 4 of the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship) for the first time in 2015.

2018 was their inaugural appearance in the national hurling league. They won the Allianz Hurling League Division 3B title at the first attempt.

Facilities

There are seven pitches in Lancashire:

  • Wavertree Park, Liverpool - Liverpool Wolfe Tones
  • Chester University - St Patrick's
  • Smithdown Road, Liverpool - John Mitchel's
  • Hough End - St Brendan's, St Peter's, Fullen Gaels
  • Old Bedian's - Oisín's
  • Turn Moss - St Ann's, St Lawrence's

Two clubs from outside Lancashire play in Lancashire competitions also:

Famous Lancashire Gaels

Vincent Boyle

Vin was born in Derry but spent most of his life in Liverpool. He was one of a group of young people who came under the influence of Sean McInerney and served with him in Liverpool in the GAA and Gaelic League. Vin attended Lancashire Lancashire County Board meetings for many years as a delegate for St.Patrick's Hurling Club.

He represented the Lancashire County Board at Provincial Council meetings and was an enthusiastic contributor to every item of business. He went through appeals and balance sheets with a fine tooth comb and would never let them be hurried through. However he was never critical of people.

Kevin Fullen

Kevin was of great football stock from Bellaghy, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. He and his family were steeped in GAA affairs, both at home and in Lancashire and Britain. His brother Father Emmet played for Derry and captained Lancashire to a Provincial Championship victory. Kevin played for John Mitchels while he was living and working in Liverpool and when his work took him to Manchester, he transferred to St.Lawrences and maintained his GAA involvement until he retired and returned home to Derry. He represented Lancashire at Provincial Council for a number of years and was elected Treasurer of the Council in 1977 at the Convention in the Horseshoe Hotel, London and served in that position for one year.

James Kieran Gleeson

Kieran came from Limerick to Manchester and was chairman of St.Brendans. He also served as Irish Culture and Language Officer at the Lancashire County Board. He has represented Lancashire at Provincial Conventions for number of years. His father is retired Principle at Newport Boys National School.

Sean Hackett

Sean was a member of his local club Errigal Ciaran (Tyrone), before coming to Liverpool in 1997 to study law at John Moores. He was appointed Universities Co-ordinator and served as such from 1997 to 2005. He played football for them and won an All-Britain medal. He joined John Mitchels, playing football and serving as Vice-Chairman. In the year 2000 he moved to Manchester to continue his studies and joined St.Lawrences. About the same time he became involved in the Lancashire County Board. He was County Fixtures Secretary in 2000, PRO in 2001, Minor Board Chairman in 2003, Assistant Secretary in 2005 and County Secretary in 2007. He also served as the Lancashire delegate to the Provincial Council of Britain and to Congress. Sean was a referee and coaching tutor. He managed the County's Under 16s, Minors and Under 21s. He also served as secretary of St.Lawrences. In 2015 Sean became Chairman of the Provincial Board. A great honour for Lancashire.

Christopher Johnston

He was a member of the St.Mary's Club, Ardee in County Louth. He came to Liverpool in the early 50s and immediately became involved with the John Mitchels Club, with whom he had a lifelong relationship. He served for both club and county in nearly every position. While he was playing he was a scoring forward on the Lancashire team in the Junior All-Ireland Championship team which played the first match on the Cambuslang pitch in Glasgow and the final in Cork. He represented Lancashire on the Provincial Council for many years and at Annual Congress. His wife Vera and his family are all actively involved in GAA and Irish Community affairs.

Patrick Johnson

Paddy came to Manchester from his home in Offaly in 1963. He became involved with the Harp and Shamrock Club and joined Oisins in 1970 and remained loyal to the club since. He wrote a great book in fact about Oisins. Paddy was Chairman of the club from 1982 to 1984 and became Chairman of the County Board in 1985. He represented Lancashire at Provincial Council in 1984 and he retained a close involvement since. He was elected Vice-President of the Council in 1991 and later was President in 1994. He served on the Central Council, either as its Vice President or the delegate for Britain for 8 years. He was at the heart of the expanding underage development scene and served as Secretary/Chairman of the Provincial Coaching and Development Committee for underage from 1997 to 2004. Paddy has since returned to Donegal.

Damian Kerr

Damian is from Monaghan and is a member of the St.Brendan's Club in Manchester. He has been a Lancashire Delegate to the Provincial Council since 2000, and was a member of the Strategic Review Committee having been appointed by then President Nickey Brennan. Damian was also a member of the Finance Committee of the Provincial Council. He served as Underage Development in the Lancashire County Board and was Fixtures Secretary for 3 years.

John M.McInerney

Known as Sean or more frequently in those different days as Mr.Mac. He could be considered to be the Father of the GAA in Britain. He was very involved in the setting up of the new Provincial Council and served as President and Treasurer. He was born in Liverpool into the then extremely Irish Community of his locality. His father was from Ennis, County Clare and his mother was born in Liverpool, her parents being from Clonmel in County Tipperary.

He was never married and was actively involved in the Gaelic League, Sinn Fein, Irish Self Determination League, the Council of Irish Societies and of course the GAA. He said his earliest recollections of the GAA in Liverpool were of Greenwich Park. Greenwich Park ceased to exist many years ago, when it became Aintree Race Course. He filled every position at Club and County Board level. He attended both Provincial Council and Congress for his whole life until he died.

Apart from his own contribution to the GAA and other Irish organisations he was a great influence on all the young men of his time and encouraged them to take part in administration. He was a staunch supporter of the various restrictive rules and apologised to no one for his Irish Ireland outlook on life.

Tadgh Meenan

Tadgh came to London in September 1961. He had a few short term jobs and decided to return to Galway after 18 months, He came back to England in June 1963 and was employed by John Murphy and Sons ever since. He joined the Geraldines Club in London where his brother Seamus was already a member, he played some football there. Tadgh's employment took him all over Britain and he eventually settled in the North-West. He joined the St.Brendan's club and has remained a member ever since. He soon became a delegate to the Lancashire County Board on behalf of his club and served for six years as Chairman, twelve years as Treasurer and many years as delegate to the Provincial Council.

He was elected Treasurer of the Provincial Council in 1984 and served in that capacity until 1999. Then, in the same year he took the position of Secretary from his great friend Joe Roarke. They worked extremely well together and became a great team.

His role has meant an enormous amount of travelling, but fortunately he enjoys it. He likes meeting people and considers all the GAA people as his friends. He has attended and enjoyed many big sporting occasions but has no hesitation in naming his most enjoyable experience. On 17th March he saw his home club Caltra win the All-Ireland Club Championship Final. He had six nephews on the winning team, the famous Meehan brothers.

Henry Purcell (Harry)

Harry came to England from his home in Wexford in 1955 and remained a committed Wexford man until the day he died. His first club in Manchester was the Harp and Shamrock club and he was a founder member of St.Lawrences. He represented Lancashire at Provincial Council over a period of many years. He was a man who said of himself "I call a spade a spade." Many an Officer came in for sharp criticism, but he never fell out with anyone. He served the County and the Province as a referee over many years. He remained Chairman of Lancashire throughout his last illness and earned the admiration of everyone.

Jim Ryan

Jim was appointed Treasurer at the very first meeting of the Provincial Council in January 1927. He was a playing member of the Liverpool hurling team at the time. Jim was born in Foyle, County Kilkenny in 1897 before the family moved to Tullaroan. He played hurling and football for Kilkenny and later Dublin and won several All-Ireland medals. Jim came to Liverpool in 1924 to help arrange the Tailteann Games. Jim's family are still involved in Irish Community affairs in Liverpool.

External links

Lancashire GAA County Board Website

References

  1. ^ "Trophies" on Lancashire GAA website
  2. ^ "Clubs" on Lancashire GAA website
  3. ^ Tone's Club profile Archived 2011-05-19 at the Wayback Machine., Lancs GAA
  4. ^ Mitchel's Club profile, Lancs GAA
  5. ^ IoM Club profile, Lancs GAA
  6. ^ Fullen Gaels Club profile Archived 2012-06-29 at the Wayback Machine., Lancs GAA
  7. ^ St Ann's Club profile, Lancs GAA
  8. ^ Club profile, Lancs GAA
  9. ^ Club profile, Lancs GAA
  10. ^ St Pat's Club profile, Lancs GAA
  11. ^ St Peter's Club profile, Lancs GAA
  12. ^ Oisín's Club profile, Lancs GAA
  13. ^ http://www.lancashiregaa.co.uk/fixtures.php?results=yes&competition_id=16
  14. ^ Walsh, Tommy. Being Irish in Liverpool. Liverpool.
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