Super Turnout at AGM


Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Chill Mhantáin held their annual AGM in Lynhams of Laragh on Thursday 6th September. This was an all-county AGM and registration evening.  We wish to thank the schools in attendance and to those who sent their apologies.

Jim O’ Riordan, Cathaoirleach, opened the meeting by welcoming those in attendance.  He both introduced and congratulated our first speaker, Dominic Leech, on his appointment as President of Leinster LGFA.  Dominic thanked Allianz Cumann na mBunscol for their tireless efforts in promoting Gaelic Games in our primary schools. He congratulated the cóiste on their Cornmarket National Awards achievements this year and thanked the GAA County board and especially the GDAs for the role they play in developing our national games in schools. Finally, he paid tribute to Jim O’Riordan on his retirement and to his many achievements over the past 40 years.

Treasurer, Emer Fahy, gave a comprehensive report of income and expenditure and PRO, Pamela McDermott, thanked local media outlets (Bray People, Wicklow Times, Wicklow Voice and East Coast Radio) for their continued support to Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Chill Mhantáin. She reminded schools to send in articles, player profiles, match reports etc, for publication in the local newspapers/radio as well as on our website and reminded us of the importance of using Allianz as much as possible in our tweets, articles and when taking photographs as they are the main sponsors of Cumann na mBunscol. Pamela thanked the County Board for their Cumann na mBunscol feature in the County Yearbook and encouraged schools to take part in the Cornmarket National Awards.  This is a worthwhile project for any school community or class group to get involved in, especially as there is so much already going on in schools across the Garden County, it is just a matter of co-ordinating and compiling it.

Ciaran Byrne, former county and national Cumann na mBunscol PRO was recognised and presented with a token of gratitude on his retirement.

Gary McGillycuddy, Boys Football Officer; Ronan Keddy, Hurling Officer; and Fiona Ní Shuilleabháin, Camogie Officer; all gave their respective reports, highlighting the success of the blitz days and noting the increase in the number of schools attending.  Each one praised the tremendous work of the Games Development Officers and thanked local grounds for the use of their facilities.  The north-east officers thanked Bray Emmets for the use of their grounds, and both Dave Barry and Micheál O Murchú for their help in organising and co-ordinating blitz days. Each thanked the county board and Fiona recognised the great support that the camogie association give to the game at primary level.

Tommy Brennan, West Wicklow, again thanked the GDA’s for all that they do and recognised that without them the games and blitz days would not be as successful and enjoyable. He noted that the lack of indoor facilities in West Wicklow was proving a challenge to the promotion and participating in games over the winter months.

Padraig Murphy, South Wicklow, reiterated the previous sentiments in relation to the fantastic work of the GDAs; he thanked them for having the pitches organised and referees at the ready to commence games on time.

Claire Frawley, Runaí, emphasised the worth of participating in the Cornmarket National Awards and the sense of community it can bring to your school. She thanked Garrett Doyle and Eddie Leonard for facilitating the Réiteoirí Óga programme and encouraged the West and South regions to run their own programs along with the North-East this year. Claire spoke on the Exhibition Games (half time games at inter-county level) and the inter-county blitzes that Wicklow were represented at this year.  Both school and regional selections represented Wicklow this year and Claire highlighted the excellent opportunity and honour this is for children to represent their county at inter-county level.  She encouraged any school or group of schools that wished to participate in the blitzes to get in contact.

County board representative and coaching officer Owen Doyle thanked schools for all the hard work that they do.  He ensured the continued support of the county board in the future. He urged clubs that while the club school link is a very positive programme that they cannot under estimate the wealth of talent that teachers within schools themselves have. Owen praised the work of our PRO Pamela McDermott in keeping Cumann na mBunscol and our national games constantly in the limelight and congratulated Jim on his retirement and the great contribution he has made, and will continue to make, in Wicklow GAA over the coming years. Finally, Owen also hailed the GDAs (Garrett, Paul, Jonathon, Cormac, Darren and Philip) as central to promotion of Gaelic games in our county and Cumann na mBunscol want to reiterate our gratitude and thanks to their dedication.

Garrett Doyle gave a brief report on the skills competition; he noted that the competition is well represented by schools and that this year they would look at revising the skill challenges going forward. The fairness of the selection process was commended making it an equal opportunity competition in the quest to represent Wicklow in Croke Park at the half time exhibition games.

As the election of officers took place, it truly was a changing of the guard with Cathaoirleach, Jim O’Riordán stepping down after many, many years at the helm.  Sineád Ní Chrean Loinsigh led the tributes to Jim as he received a well-deserved standing ovation. Sinead thanked him for his support and his listening ear throughout the years and for the countless trips he made to county, provincial and national meetings with the interest of Primary school participation in Gaelic games at the core of each journey. Jim takes on the role of Leas-Chathaoirleach while Sineád was elected Cathaoirleach. The following officers were also elected Claire Frawley, Runai; Pamela McDermott, PRO; Emer Fahy, Cisteoir; Quiz Co-ordinator Billy Cuddihy, Boys Football Officer Gary McGuillycuddy, Hurling Officer Ronan Keddy, Girls Football Officer Cormac O’ Buachalla, Camogie Officer Fiona Ní Shúilleabháin, West representative Tommy Brennan, South Representatives Padraig Murphy and Pól Ó Fathaigh and Committee members Ruth Stafford, Ciarán O’Neill, Paddy Mullen.


We wish Ciaran Byrne all the best in his retirement!