Time for the GAA to reassess parish rule

GAA president John Horan at yesterday’s unveiling of the new GAA manifesto in Bettystown, Co Meath. A relaxation of the parish rule is vital to the GAA and might give clubs a fighting chance in the years ahead. Picture: Sportsfile

The week before last, the Irish Examiner reported on a rural GAA seminar staged by Club Tyrone in Garvaghey. Last Saturday week was a day for kindred spirits fighting against what is increasingly feeling like a storm tide.

Slaughtneil’s Seamus McEldowney spoke of Derry GAA’s strength being in the countryside yet more money is being pumped into urban areas with little return. 

Organiser Mark Conway described Club Tyrone’s intention to make Garvaghey a “Tyrone Gaelic Bauhaus” while Leinster senior football champions Mullinalaghta’s Finbarr Meehan spoke of every child being treasured “as a jewel” because they can’t afford to lose anyone.

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