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GalwayÕs heroics valued at Û12,000



Date Published: 19-Dec-2012

Dara Bradley

GALWAY hurling received a risible grant of just over €12,000 from the Leinster Council this year, even though the senior team illuminated the provincial championship by claiming the Bob O’Keeffe Cup for the first time.

Despite Anthony Cunningham and Co’s Leinster championship heroics over the title-holders Kilkenny in particular, and wins over Offaly and Westmeath, it was confirmed that the Galway Hurling Board was granted just €12,020 from the Leinster Council in 2012.

Chairman Joe Byrne told last Wednesday’s meeting that the Hurling Board, now a hurling committee that comes under the auspices of the County Board, received only travel and meal expenses money from the Leinster body.

Galway revived the provincial championship this year in particular, beating Kilkenny by ten points in the final at GAA HQ, which was arguably the fairytale of the hurling Summer, however, they were not given any gate receipts monies from any of the three Leinster championship matches the county was involved in this year.

Byrne told the meeting that the Tribesmen were “very disappointed” by the grant from the Leinster Council, and that “we got nothing for winning it (Leinster Championship)”. He said Galway needed “better financial support” from Leinster “considering the financial windfall we are worth”. He said the grant received was “in the gesture category” but, he added, that he looks forward to playing Leinster championship matches in Galway “in the near future”.

The Connacht Council granted Galway just over €10,000; the board was granted over €37,000 for its participation in the National Hurling League; and was awarded a central grant from the GAA of €322,602 for the year.

The central funding included an €80,000 holiday fund from the GAA, which was awarded due to the gate receipts boost as a result of the Tribesmen’s participation in the All-Ireland final, which went to a replay, generating big profits for Croke Park.

The Hurling Board’s finances are in a fairly healthy state, given that gate receipts for club games in Galway this year generated €347,460.

That figure does not include between €80,000 and €100,000 earned from the Galway senior, U21 and intermediate finals, which took place in November.

The accounts explain income and expenditure up to October 31, not the full calendar year, which is why the finals windfall was not included, the meeting heard. Last year’s accounts were up to December and so comparisons were difficult. The change in accounting was introduced by Croke Park.

Bryne said: “Considering our November club gates are excluded from the income, 2012 represents an excellent year financially”.

Some concern was expressed at the meeting that €108,144 was paid this year for interest on a loan on lands bought at Mountain South; and it was confirmed that interest would be payable for the next five years.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past



A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.


For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

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Archive News

Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013


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Athenry fail to take chances as they bow out of Junior Cup



Date Published: 29-Jan-2013

Athenry FC 1

Kilbarrack United 2

(After extra time)

For the second year in succession Athenry were done in extra time in the FAI Junior Cup as last season’s beaten finalist’s came from behind to snatch an excellent game in Moanbawn on Sunday afternoon.

On a heavy pitch that was only playable following extensive groundwork by club officials all morning, the home side were by far the better side in the opening half, but failed to take advantage of a number of opportunities that came their way.

An Alan O’Donovan penalty gave them a merited advantage just after the restart, but thereafter were on the back foot as Kilbarrack took over, but for all their pressing, the home rearguard were dealing comfortably with their forays.

However they were struck a body blow just six minutes from time, as big striker Keith Kirwan was left all alone at the far post to head the equaliser and from that point on the Dubliners were the better side.

They started off the extra time in the ascendancy and enjoying all the momentum before striking for a good winning goal on 104 minutes. A strong bench allowed them to make some necessary changes and it was not a facility that was available to Athenry manager Gabriel Glavin.

With Gary Forde and Gary Delaney out through suspension following their sending off against OLBC in the previous round, and Seamie Crowe injured, it left their bench rather threadbare with just a number of young squad players available.

Playing with the aid of the slight incline and any wind advantage going, the home side had a Connor Cannon effort on target in the opening minute, while John Meleady was just over with a flick at the other end.

Meleady then tested Andrew Walsh who saved comfortably, before the goalkeeper pulled off a brilliant double save on 14 minutes.

Firstly he went full length to push away a Meleady shot and was then back on his feet to parry David Jackson’s close-range rebound.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.

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