Sunday 20 October 2019

EGM will decide Clonard's fate

An extraordinary general meeting is now holding the key to the future of Clonard G.A.A. club.

When members met for a second time last week to discuss their future, if any, the main officers had to endure many anxious moments during what was at times a lively debate.

No doubt, the views of some members who felt the club had lacked leadership from the top table over recent years will be taken on board as they strive to arrive at a decision regarding their future.

However, despite the gloomy predictions, club Secretary Angela McCormack did issue a one-line press statement on Clonard's behalf on Sunday night stating: 'Clonard GAA Club is considering a positive approach and a fresh start for hurling in Wexford town'.

In 2015 the club was amalgamated with Volunteers for under-age hurling purposes, while the two clubs also united for Junior hurling and Under-21 football under the Wygram Gaels name.

Volunteers were successful in the Junior football championship as a single entity, while Clonard were demolished in their games in the same grade and were relegated, leading to the present crisis within the club which was formed in 1978.

Their problems were further exacerbated when Volunteers at a recent extraordinary general meeting decided to enter the 2016 leagues and championships as a single entity both at under-age and adult.

It is also virtually certain that they will solely concentrate of football, with hurling for the foreseeable future no longer part of their set-up.

This is now going to the club's annual general meeting on December 4 by way of motion for approval, where they are expected to gain the necessary support and return to their roots as a solely football club.

Club Chairman, Peter McGuire, said on Saturday: 'We have made a decision to enter 2016 as a football club both at under-age and adult. This is now going to the annual general meeting by way of motion for approval.

'Once approved the club will have football solely. We will be going back to our roots and entering as St. John's Volunteers for 2016. We will be football only once this is passed.'

On a rumoured amalgamation with Clonard for under-age purposes, he said: 'No, that would be just going back to where we were. We will not be amalgamating. We will be solely a football club.

'Players who hurled with us will then be free to transfer to whatever club they choose. We will be concentrating on football both at under-age and adult as a single entity.'

It had been rumoured that Clonard contemplated bringing a package to their extraordinary general meeting proposing an amalgamation with Volunteers for under-age while entering a Junior hurling team on their own.

But cold water has been poured on this given the response of McGuire who is quite adamant that the motion being put to his club's annual general meeting is for it to enter football only and under the St. John's Volunteers name.

Now the future of the Clonard club is delicately poised, and the largest populated parish in the Diocese could possibly left without a G.A.A. structure to cater for the youth.

Wexford People

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