Irish World Article: London GAA - Gaels unveil their future
With several high profile administrators from Ireland in attendance, including Ulster Council Secretary Danny Murphy and Leinster Council Chairman Liam O’Neill, as well as Provincial Council President John Gormley and Seamus McGarry from the DION Fund, the Gaels Club Chairman Tom Mohan was on hand to launch the document, which sets out a 29-step action plan designed to ensure the future success of the club.
With many far-reaching aims, ranging from improvements in the physical infra-structure of the club, including the re-building of the clubhouse, the securing of a long-term lease on the site and the development of improved playing and training facilities, through to the more important development of coaching and participation within the club, the Strategic Plan sets out a blueprint for the mid to long term future for Tir Chonaill Gaels.
Under the guidance of Meath man Martin Frayne, who has worked alongside several clubs in Ireland in helping to develop the own Strategic Plans, and the Gaels’ Director of Football Paddy Carr, the club have worked tirelessly over the past 18-months to develop this document.
Speaking at the launch, Chairman Tom Mohan said: “ What we need to do now is to secure the future [of the club] and the success of this plan depends on the entire club.”
Meanwhile, in a well received speech, Ulster Council Secretary Danny Murphy congratulated the club on their foresight and said: “This [the plan] is the most important piece of writing ever done by the club, for what gets measured, gets done.”
Leinster Chairman Liam O’Neill, who has enjoyed a long personal association with Tir Chonaill Gaels through the club’s well-established summer camps, stated that: “There is a link between those who plan and those who succeed.”
Mr O’Neill also went on to stress the importance of communication between the overseas areas of the GAA and the Association, saying that it was important that the Association at home knew what clubs in Britain wanted from them.
The relevance of this type of forward planning was further emphasised by London County Board Secretary and Tir Chonaill Gaels member Niall Erskine, who was also part of the club’s Strategic Plan Work Group, when he told the meeting that by this time last year, there had been 190 inter-county transfers into London, however in the same period in 2007, there had been just over 50.
That point alone emphasised the need for other clubs in Britain to address their coaching and youth development plans in the way the Gaels had done in this plan.
Further to the launch of the Strategic Plan, the Gaels were also able to announce the launch of the club’s on-line lotto draw, which began this week.