South Tipperary GAA stalwart pays tribute to volunteers

The contribution made by the outgoing secretary Noel Byrne during his five year term of office was praised by the President of the South Tipperary GAA Board Michael O’Meara at the annual convention.

The contribution made by the outgoing secretary Noel Byrne during his five year term of office was praised by the President of the South Tipperary GAA Board Michael O’Meara at the annual convention.

“His command of fixtures has been particularly brilliant and he will be a hard act to follow but thankfully his services will not be lost to us,” said the Board President.

He congratulated new Secretary Seamus Mullins and wished him well in the position. Assuring the new secretary of every support, he told delegates that the Mullins family always had a deep involvement in our games with Commercials and St. Marys clubs.

The Board President said they owed a deep debt of gratitude to the very many people in all areas of the Division who in very difficult times assisted and supported those elected to manage and organise competitions and the activities of the Board.

“Think of all the club officials, the players, referees, umpires, linesmen, gate checkers, board delegates etc who contribute so freely of their time and expertise. Think also of the general public and club followers who give us financial support by their attendance at our games, and of our generous sponsors whose backing we deeply appreciate.

All those I have mentioned combine to keep our Association in the south of our county very much alive and may that ever be the case,” he said.

Mr O’Meara informed the club delegates that steps needed to be taken towards increasing the income of the board as like most organisations they were financially on a downward curve.

“We are totally dependant on gate receipts and sponsorship and there are opportunities especially in sponsorship where a number of important championships especially senior hurling are now available. This is our most attractive competition and has contributed as much as 46% of our gate money in recent years,” he said.

He congratulated championship winners of 2012 and especially those who went on to win county championships and also congratulated those from the division involved in the All-Ireland minor and intermediate triumphs.

Mr O’Meara said it was a year when much effort was made to put in motion the revamp of the GAA Centre in Clonmel.

“It would be a pity should the efforts be not recognised at this convention. Before the end of January we will have a state of the art building that will give us a base that we can cherish and be proud of. You chairman together with county chairman Sean Nugent, our secretary Noel Byrne and our other officers gave the lead in fighting for and gaining LEADER Funding for this major revamp that will ensure that the financial burden will be little greater than the amount granted for the purpose of new toilets by the board,” he said.

The Board President told delegates that after ten years he was standing down as secretary of Sean Ghael.

“When Sean Ghael was founded over ten years ago the late John Moloney honoured me by asking me to become secretary to get it off the ground. I promised him a year or two but it took ten years for me to say goodbye. I must say that I enjoyed the experience and I thank those from this Division who have assisted me, particularly Tom Cusack, Tony Fitzgerald, Vincent O’Meara and all those from the clubs of the Division who gave their support and those who were honoured with awards.” he said.