UACHTARAN Cumann Luthchleas Gael Liam O’Neill will perform the eagerly anticipated official launch of “Magic Memories - Birr GAA Club Through the Lens” on Bank Holiday Monday, October 29 at 8pm in the County Arms Hotel.
The historical publication that features photographs and tales recounting the club’s many successes is being published to coincide with the centenary of Birr’s first Offaly senior hurling championship title triumph in 1912.
Birr’s lengthy honours list now features 22 county SHC titles, four All-Ireland and seven Leinster club titles as it joined the pantheon of great club sides during the past quarter of a century.
The book was the brainchild of club committee member Martin McCarthy, who himself captained Birr minor hurlers to county glory back in 1979, and he brought together a committee that also includes Liz Kennedy (secretary), Gary Cahill & Herbert Hennessy (treasurers), Alan Walsh (PRO), Patrick ‘Junior’ O’Callaghan, Mick Spain and Cllr Tony McLoughlin.
Over the past four months, and with the help of the general public, they’ve been busy gathering photographs and material for “Magic Memories - Birr GAA Club Through the Lens” and it promises to be a magnificent keepsake that will stand the test of time and it will also be a fitting tribute to all who contributed to the club since its foundation.
And in conjunction with the book that will retail at €10, a superb DVD also entitled “Magic Memories – Birr GAA Through The Lens” has been produced by Gary Hoctor of Hello Camera and this, too, will be launched on Monday, October 29 by Uachtaran CLG Liam O’Neill.
The DVD, which features interviews with All-Ireland club winning captains Johnny Pilkington, Joe Errity and Simon Whelahan and Millennium Man Brian Whelahan along with 1971 SHC winning captain Declan Hennessy, Johnny Hogan and Christy Walsh from the 1938 – ’48 era, renowned and celebrated underage coach Bro Vincent and many more, has been produced with support from the Offaly Local Development Company.
It will be a treasured oral history of the club and the DVD will retail (separate from the book) at €10 also. The book and DVD will both be on sale in the County Arms Hotel on the launch night and they will be available to purchase locally afterwards.
Chairperson of the “Magic Memories – Birr GAA Through The Lens”
sub-committee, Martin McCarthy explained that they were honoured GAA President Liam O’Neill was performing the official launch of the book and DVD and he expressed sincere thanks to everyone that contributed photographs and items of historical value for both productions.
“We were overwhelmed and enthused by the messages of support and positive reaction we received from the many visitors to our photographic exhibition held during the Birr Vintage Week & Arts Festival and I believe people won’t be disappointed by the book or DVD either,” explained Mr McCarthy.
He thanked the page sponsors and patrons for their ‘enormous generosity’ and suggested that prior to the book going to print this weekend, if someone wished to become a “Magic Memories – Birr GAA Through The Lens” page sponsor (€50) or patron (€25) that they could do so by contacting himself at 087 7649804 or any other members of the committee.
Mr McCarthy said the book and DVD will be treasured by GAA folk everywhere. He concluded by extending an open invite to the launch.
“Birr GAA club has a rich history and I believe the forthcoming book and DVD will be a fitting memorial to that history. We are looking forward to the launch on Monday, October 29 in the County Arms Hotel and every one from the town of Birr and beyond are welcome and invited to come along and enjoy what promises be yet another milestone in the history of this proud club.”