G.A.A. Publications - 1989
Not very much to report in the line of new club histories in the county for 1989. Pride of place must go to 'Centenary G.A.A. Story, 1887-1987, Fethard, Coolmoyne & Killusty', which made its appearance with suitable pomp and cirucumstance in the Abbeymill Theatre, Fethard, on May 27.
The events of the evening were chaired that well-known G.A.A. personality, Dick Cummins, and the book was launched by Monsignor Christopher Lee, who first came to Fethard as a curate in 1942 and became Parish Priest in 1960. Other dignatories to grace the occasion were Munster Council Chairman, Michael Maher, former County Chairman, Michael Frawley, Football Board Chairman, Hugh Kennedy, South Board Chairman, Con Hogan, Fr. James Power, P.P., and community leaders.
This book of 426 pages is a comprehensive record of football, hurling, camogie, handball and G.A.A. activity in general in the parish. The book was edited Michael Ahearne, a native of the parish, who lives in Dublin, and the work of research was done locally by a Centenary Committee under the chairmanship of Dick Cummins.
Nearly 250 pages of the book are devoted to the history of football, with comprehensive coverage of all grades. A section entitled 'There were Seven Green Fields' informs the reader of the seven playing fields used at different times in the parish.
The section on hurling begins with the first senior team to be fielded, Fethard Burkes, in May 1912, and goes on to record the arrival of Coolmoyne on the scene twelve years later. It is related how game against Boherlahan in the 1926 South final was called off with ten minutes to go because of a row and how, as a result the match being awarded to Boherlahan, hurling was given a terrible setback in Coolmoyne and a senior team wasn't affiliated again until 1935. High point for the hurlers of Coolmoyne was winning the south senior hurling championship in 1951.
A Number of Firsts
Fethard won the first county senior football championship and leads the conty roll of honour with 17 titles. Dick Cummins (snr.) was the first chairman of the Munster Council. The Fethard club is the only one in the south division to have won titles, under-21 hurling excepted, in all grades of hurling and football. The most famous hurler from the parish must be Liam Connolly, who won an All-Ireland senior hurling medal in 1958.
The book is full of interesting detail and fine photographs and the production is a credit to the printers, The Kilkenny People. The book is unusual in that it is the first club history in the county in latter years to be a sellout. Five hundred copies, 300 hardback and 200 softback, were printed and, if you're lucky enough to have got a copy, hold on to it for dear life because it's already a collector's item. Well done, Fethard!
Another interesting development during the year was the 'Ros Review' a bulletin to the members of the Roscea Club. The brainchild of Seamus O'Doherty, this four sheet production was sent to every club member about four times during the year and kept him up todate with club developments. So many of us talk of the need for communication within clubs and this is a practical example of what can be done.
In the Offering
A number of club histories are on the verge of publication. The nearest to that date is the Cappawhite club history. Liam Treacy has informed me they're hopeful of making the Christmas market. A committee has been appointed at Thurles Sarsfields to bring to fruition the work of the late Donie O'Gorman. It is hoped to have that book published during the year. I haven't heard any word of the Galtee Rovers' book which, I understood, was to appear this year and can only hope we shall see it completed by this time twelve months.
Mention of Donie O'Gorman recalls his untimely death last May. For a good number of years he was producing programmes of the highest quality at Semple Stadium and setting standards for other venues. His death was untimely and his loss a major one, not only to programme making at our premier venue but also for the publication of the Thurles Sarsfields story. His job at Semple Stadium has been taken over by John McCormack and he is filling his footsteps impressively.
During the year the Tipperary Star continued to give excellent coverage to G.A.A. affairs in the county. One of the most welcome developments was the increased coverage by the Nationalist. For the past few years we complained about the sloppy coverage of our affairs in that paper. But, as if aroused from slumber the paper has given an outstanding treatment over the past year. Each week it appears to send out a race of reporters to report on our games and give us columns of coverage and plenty of photographs to keep us entertained in the next edition. But, the Guardian stole a march on all the local papers with its coverage of the All Ireland. On its front page it gave us a magnificent picture of the All Ireland Senior Hurling champions in full living colour! It was a fine tribute to our senior hurlers and we owe a big 'thank you' to the new editor, Gerry Slevin, who figured so prominently in the early years of this Yearbook.
Tipperary G.A.A. Yearbook 1990, p 149