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Garrett steers Greenfields through



Date Published: 09-Mar-2012

 GREENFIELDS became the first ever Galway hockey club to reach the final of the Irish Women’s Trophy as they produced a solid display to dispose of the Northern Ireland Civil Service at Dangan on Saturday.

Trish Garrett’s second-half strike was enough to send the Greens through to the decider against Omagh on April 1st, in a game that could have resulted in a much higher score for Greenfields had it not been for the NICS goalkeeper Alanna Hill.

Following a nervy opening, the hosts became dominant in terms of possession and forced several short corners, with Neasa McGettigan coming closest to converting the set pieces which were swung in by Áine Collins.

Jan Boyle showed she could be dangerous for NICS on the right wing with her skill and pace, but the impeccable Clodagh Grealy ensured that her keeper Sinead Collins rarely had a save to make in the opening-half.

In the space of two minutes McGettigan had more opportunities to send Greenfields into the lead – firstly her darting run from the right resulted in her shot parried wide by Hill and from Collins’ resulting corner, McGettigan was again denied by the NICS stopper.

In the final five minutes at the end of the half, two good chances fell in favour of the Ulster side to force a goal against the run of play through Kathryn Clawson as she first fired inches wide and, just a minute later, her mazy run was halted by the ever-present Collins.

After the break Greenfields almost hit the front within seconds as a slick move saw Gillian Heavey feed Mary Healy at the edge of the circle, but her low shot came rattling back off the far post.

Another ten minutes passed before Greenfields orchestrated their next attack when McGettigan embarked towards goal once more and picked out Alma Whelan in support, but again the target was agonisingly missed.

Greenfields, however, immediately won possession and this time the ball would find the net. Garrett drove towards goal from distance. With height on the ball this time and her high shot proved too much for Hill, who got a touch but failed to stop the ball reaching the top corner much to the delight of the 100 or so strong home support.

Five minutes later, the lead was almost doubled as NICS, who won their four previous contests on penalties, never looked like they would force extra-time. McGettigan was provider again for for Ailbhe Finnerty as Hill kept the Northerners in it.

Trish Garrett was next to try and force her second goal but her effort was superbly blocked by Nikki Tipping. A minute later, Clodagh Keally’s pinpoint pass fell to the waiting Gillian Heavy who should have sealed it, but her effort drifted inches wide.

McGettigan and Collins had further efforts saved by Hill late on, and the shower of hailstones in the final minutes failed to dampen the spirits of the ecstatic Greenfields players and support alike as they aim to become the first Connacht winners of the women’s Irish Hockey Trophy.

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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Archive News

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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