Date Published: 23-Jun-2011
CHAIRMAN of the 2011 Féile na nGael Committee, Stephen Cahalan sits comfortably in an anteroom off the lobby of the Lough Rea Hotel. For a man spearheading the mammoth task of hosting 240 teams – between hurling, camogie and handball – in the county over the coming weekend, he looks quite relaxed. Frighteningly so.
However, Cahalan says he can afford to be. Since taking on the unenviable role of organising one of the country’s premier juvenile events, he states he has received nothing but support from the local clubs, local businesses and organisations and, of course, his fellow committee members.
“I suppose, when I took this job, I didn’t know what I was letting myself in for,” laughs Cahalan. “It has been a paramount task but, in fairness, the committee has really embraced it and they have worked tirelessly. They are really on top of their brief.
“The logistics of this are absolutely massive. At the very outset, when we looked at it, I said if this was going to be successful, then we had to get a specific group of people behind us, and that was the clubs. Thankfully, they have really rowed in behind us. Whatever help we wanted, we got it. They have been true to their word.
“I mean, the response is unbelievable. We held a stewards meeting recently because we needed 80 people to marshal (at the parade). However, over 100 people volunteered. So, while logistically it looks a big task, given that kind of support, it has to be a success.”
With over five thousand U-14 players due to feature in 410 games throughout Féile weekend – which will be hosted right across County Galway this Friday, Saturday and Sunday – Cahalan and company also recognised that they needed the backing of more than just the clubs.
“We knew we had to meet the people of Loughrea (headquarters of the games) and we have received great co-operation from the local Gardaí, in particular Supt. Enda Walsh and Sgt. Daithí Cronin; Loughrea Hurling Club, especially Christy O’Loughlin; Loughrea Town Council; the Chamber of Commerce; and the Tidy Towns,” continues the Féile na nGael Chairman.
“They have really, really embraced it. They have really pulled out all the stops. So, having a body of people like that behind us, it really made our job much, much easier.”
Cahalan stresses, though, that pulling it all together was not solely down to him, and that the success of what has been achieved so far has been down to the entire committee. “The amount of work they have done is unreal.
“Noreen Shiel has been an excellent Secretary. The amount of work she has done in coordinating the whole thing! From the Galway Committee to the Croke Park Committee, she has been absolutely tremendous, while Bernie O’Connor, as Treasurer, has been a great fundraiser. We had targets to meet and he reached them all . . . and he maybe even surpassed some of them.
“Michael Nee is our referees’ coordinator and he has given courses to all our referees. He has about 70 referees organised and waiting for this weekend. Gordon Duane has coordinated all the fixtures from the Friday, through Saturday, to Sunday – he has done tremendous work – while Gerry Glynn has worked tirelessly to produce a beautiful programme. It is absolutely excellent.
“Niall Canavan is our PRO and he has kept us to the forefront of local news. Indeed, we are really indebted to the Connacht Tribune, which ran a page of Féile pictures every week over the last 10 weeks, and to Galway Bay FM for their coverage. Along with Niall, they have been getting our story out there.”
Other committee members to receive particular mention were Kevin Craddock and John Williams, both of whom have coordinated the handball competitions and County Camogie Chairperson Geraldine McGrath, coordinator of the visiting teams.
Gort’s Francis Connors is also lauded by the Chairman for his work, in particular for spearheading the recent promotion of Féile in the local national schools, some of which were even visited by GAA President Christy Cooney throughout the course of the week. “That was a total success,” beams Cahalan.
For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.
Judge adjourns Connemara assault case
Date Published: 08-May-2013
A date will be set next October for the trial of a 52-year old Connemara man, who is charged with assaulting traditional Irish musician Noel Hill five years ago.
Michael Folan from Teach Mór, Lettermullen, is charged with intentionally or recklessly causing serious harm to Noel Hill at Tí Padraig Mairtín Beag in Leitir Mór, on St Stephen’s Day, 2008.
The matter had been listed for trial on several occasions before Galway Circuit Criminal Court in the intervening period.
It was referred to the High Court in Dublin last year for judicial review after Michael Folan said he wanted his trial heard ‘as Gaeilge’and that a bi-lingual jury be made available to hear the case.
At Galway Circuit Criminal Court, Judge Rory McCabe adjourned the case for mention to October when it’s expected a date will be set for trial.
Bank of Ireland Galway Shopping Centre branch to close
Date Published: 10-May-2013
Bank of Ireland’s branch at Galway Shopping Centre on the Headford Road is to close in July.
The branch is to merge into the BOI outlet at Galway Industrial Estate in Mervue.
Galway Bay fm news reports the 14 staff impacted are to be offered redeployment and there will be no job losses.
Galway RNLI rescues three people stranded on Hare Island
Date Published: 13-May-2013
Galway RNLI Lifeboat has come to the rescue of three students who got stranded on Hare Island after getting caught in the tide off Ballyloughan Beach.
The two girls and boy, in their late teens had gone for a walk and were spotted waving from the island by a local resident who contacted the emergency Services and Galway Lifeboat.
Conditions at the time (4pm) were very changeable with heavy showers.
Three members of the Lifeboat shore crew were working in the vicinity of the station at the time and launched the boat in six minutes.
The three students were picked up safely and brought back to the Lifeboat Station at Galway Docks where they were warmed up and given tea and did not require medical attention.