Four men revealed as new IMRO Radio Awards Hall of Fame inductees

Four men revealed as new IMRO Radio Awards Hall of Fame inductees
Newstalk’s Sean Moncrieff, Paul Byrne, Chief Executive Radio Kerry, Seamus McKee from BBC Radio Ulster, and RTÉ Radio 1’s Ronan Collins were announced as the latest recipients of this prestigious accolade. Picture: Iain White Photography

Four new inductees have been announced for the 2019 IMRO Hall of Fame today.

RTÉ Radio 1’s Ronan Collins, Newstalk’s Sean Moncrieff, Paul Byrne Chief Executive Radio Kerry, and Seamus McKee from BBC Radio Ulster were announced as the latest recipients of the prestigious accolade.

The new inductees join household names such as Gay Byrne, Pat Kenny, Larry Gogan, Ian Dempsey, Áine Lawlor, Candy Devine, Dave Fanning and Tony Fenton amongst others.

The Hall of Fame celebrates both those on-air and those behind the mic.

Chief Executive of Radio Kerry, Paul Byrne announced that he was stepping down from his role after 15 years.

Accepting his award, he reflected about how he first got into the industry after a friend suggested it to him.

"One of the guys involved in the band said to me that he was involved in a pirate radio station in Tipperary and said that I should get involved and from there I did," said Mr Byrne.

"I got a great buzz out of presenting programmes at the time.

"I always remember that when I finished a programme I couldn't wait until the next programme to get back in.

"I would listen to my own programmes and try to identify where I was going wrong and try to correct the mistakes."

Sean Moncrieff said that it has been a privilege to present Moncrieff for the past 15 years.

"When you realise that you are a presence in people's lives, the vast majority of whom you will never meet, you realise what a privilege that is and you realise how lucky you are," he said this afternoon.

Ronan Collins recalled his career before joining RTÉ working in pirate radio in the late 1970s.

"But before that again, in 1967 at the age of 15, I was on a pirate radio station called Radio Atlantis that broadcast from a two-up, two-down house off the North Circular Road - also there was the great Declan Meehan," said Mr Collins.

He said that at the time he never imagined that he would still be broadcasting but that he still has as much "great craic and fun".

BBC Radio Ulster's Seamus McKee said that he had learned many things over his years of broadcasting across current affairs, arts and sports.

"The most important thing is that I owe so much to people who have faith in me," said Mr McKee.

We owe it to people who have faith in us, who trust us and it is a great amount of trust put in us when we go on air.

"It is a privelege to have earned that trust and I hope it has in some measure been repaid."

Meanwhile, the IMRO Radio Awards says it wants to see more women inducted into the Hall of Fame in the coming years.

Chairman of the IMRO Radio Awards Tom Maguire says he hopes stations will nominate more women in the future.

"The one thing that I hope as a committee we will see more of in coming years - and we have had them in the past - is more women inducted into the Hall of Fame as well because if that is one regret we had this year that out of the nominees we had men. So that is what we had to select from," said Mr Maguire.

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