Famous Lancashire GAA Gaels

Vincent Boyle

Vin was born in Derry but spent most of his life in Liverpool. He was one of a group of young people who came under the influence of Sean McInerney and served with him in Liverpool in the GAA and Gaelic League. Vin attended Lancashire Lancashire County Board meetings for many years as a delegate for St.Patrick’s Hurling Club.

He represented the Lancashire County Board at Provincial Council meetings and was an enthusiastic contributor to every item of business. He went through appeals and balance sheets with a fine tooth comb and would never let them be hurried through. However he was never critical of people. 

Kevin Fullen

Kevin was of great football stock from Bellaghy in County Derry. He and his family were steeped in GAA affairs, both at home and in Lancashire and Britain. His brother Father Emmet played for Derry and captained Lancashire to a Provincial Championship victory. Kevin played for John Mitchels while he was living and working in Liverpool and when his work took him to Manchester, he transferred to St.Lawrences and mainted his GAA involvement until he retired and returned home to Derry. He represented Lancashire at Provincial Council for a number of years and was elected Treasurer of the Council in 1977 at the Convention in the Horseshoe Hotel, London and served in that position for one year. 

James Kieran Gleeson

Kieran came from Limerick to Manchester and was chairman of St.Brendans. He also served as Irish Culture and Language Officer at the Lancashire County Board. He has represented Lancashire at Provincial Conventions for number of years. His father is retired Principle at Newport Boys National School. 

Sean Hackett

Sean was a member of his local club Errigal Ciaran (Tyrone), before coming to Liverpool in 1997 to study law at John Moores. He was appointed Universities Co-ordinator and served as such from 1997 to 2005. He played football for them and won an All-Britain medal. He joined John Mitchels, playing football and serving as Vice-Chairman. In the year 2000 he moved to Manchester to continue his studies and joined St.Lawrences. About the same time he became involved in the Lancashire County Board. He was County Fixtures Secretary in 2000, PRO in 2001, Minor Board Chairman in 2003, Assistant Secretary in 2005 and County Secretary in 2007. He also served as the Lancashire delegate to the Provincial Council of Britain and to Congress. Sean was a referee and coaching tutor. He managed the County’s Under 16s, Minors and Under 21s. He also served as secretary of St.Lawrences. In 2015 Sean became Chairman of the Provincial Board. A great honour for Lancashire.

Christopher Johnston

He was a member of the St.Mary’s Club, Ardee in County Louth. He came to Liverpool in the early 50s and immediately became involved with the John Mitchels Club, with whom he had a lifelong relationship. He served for both club and county in nearly every position.  While he was playing he was a scoring forward on the Lancashire team in the Junior All-Ireland Championship team which played the first match on the Cambuslang pitch in Glasgow and the final in Cork. He represented Lancashire on the Provincial Council for many years and at Annual Congress. His wife Vera and his family are all actively involved in GAA and Irish Community affairs. 

Patrick Johnson

Paddy came to Manchester from his home in Offaly in 1963. He became involved with the Harp and Shamrock Club and joined Oisins in 1970 and remained loyal to the club since. He wrote a great book in fact about Oisins. Paddy was Chairman of the club from 1982 to 1984 and became Chairman of the County Board in 1985. He represented Lancashire at Provincial Council in 1984 and he retained a close involvement since. He was elected Vice-President of the Council in 1991vand later was President in 1994. He served on the Central Council, either as its Vice President or the delegate for Britain for 8 years.  He was at the heart of the expanding underage development scene and served as Secretary/Chairman of the Provincial Coaching and Development Committee for underage from 1997 to 2004. Paddy has since returned to Donegal. 

Damian Kerr

Damian is frmo Monaghan and is a member of the St.Brendan’s Club in Manchester. He has been a Lancashire Delegate to the Provincial Council since 2000, and was a member of the Strategic Review Committee having been appointed by then President Nickey Brennan. Damian was also a member of the Finance Committee of the Provincial Council. He served as Underage Development in the Lancashire County Board and was Fixtures Secretary for 3 years. 

John M.McInerney

Known as Sean or more frequently in those different days as Mr.Mac. He could be considered to be the ‘Father’ of the GAA in Britain. He was very involved in the setting up of the new Provincial Council and served as President and Treasurer. He was born in Liverpool into the then extremely ‘Irish Ireland’ Community of Ireland. His father was from Ennis, County Clare and his mother was born in Liverpool, her parents being from Clonmel in County Tipperary.

He was never married and was actively involved in the Gaelic League, Sinn Fein, Irish Self Determination League, the Council of Irish Societies and of course the GAA. He said his earlest recollections of the GAA in Liverpool were of Greenwich Park. Greenwich Park ceased to exist many years ago, when it became Aintree Race Course. He filled every position at Club and County Board level. He attended both Provincial Council and Congress for his whole life until he died.

Apart from his own contribution to the GAA and other Irish organisations he was a great influence on all the young men of his time and encouraged them to take part in administration. He was a staunch supporter of the various restrictive rules and apologised to no one for his Irish Ireland outlook on life.

Tadgh Meenan

Tadgh came to London in September 1961. He had a few short term jobs and decided to return to Galway after 18 months, He came back to England in June 1963 and was employed by John Murphy and Sons ever since. He joined the Geraldines Club in London where his brother Seamus was already a member, he played some football there. Tadgh’s employment took him all over Britain and he eventually settled in the North-West.  He joined the St.Brendan’d club and has remained a member ever since. He soon became a delegate to the Lancashire County Board on behalf of his club and served for six years as Chairman, twelve years as Treasurer and many years as delegate to the Provinical Council.

He was elected Treasurer of the Provincial Council in 1984 and served in that capacity until 1999. Then, in the same year he took the position of Secretary from his great friend Joe Roarke. They worked extremely well together and became a great team.

His role has meant an enormous amount of travelling, but fortunately he enjoys it. He likes meeting people and considers all the GAA people as his friends.  He has attended and enjoyed many big sporting occasions but has no hesitation in naming his most enjoyable experience. On 17th March he saw his home club Caltra win the All-Ireland Club Championship Final. He had six nephews on the winning team, the famous Meehan brothers.

Henry Purcell (Harry)

Harry came to England from his home in Wexford in 1955 and remained a committed Wexford man until the day he died. His first club in Manchester was the Harp and Shamrock club and he was a founder member of St.Lawrences. He represented Lancashire at Provincial Council over a period of many years. He was a man who said of himself “I call a spade a spade”. Many an Officer came in for sharp criticism, but he never fell out with anyone. He served the County and the Province as a referee over many years.  He remained Chairman of Lancashire throughout his last illness and earned the admiration of everyone.

Jim Ryan

Jim was appointed Treasurer at the very first meeting of the Provincial Council in January 1927. He was a playing member of the Liverpool hurling team at the time. Jim was born in Foyle, County Kilkenny in 1897 before the family moved to Tullaroan. He played hurling and football for Kilkenny and later Dublin and won several All-Ireland medals. Jim came to Liverpool in 1924 to help arrange tje Tailteann Games. Jim’s family are still involved in Irish Community affairs in Liverpool.

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