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Will Super Clubs Ruin The Gaa

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Replying To bdbuddah:  "I'm not talking of willy nilly setting up new GAA clubs. I'm talking about setting up new GAA clubs where at the moment one GAA club caters for a big catchment area.

I'm not from that part of Meath where the new club is formed so I don't know specifics of how the club was formed.
I gather the new club (Eastern Gaels) have academy age group kids section and and managed to field this year by getting older players to play.
A big obstacle the new club faced this year was registering players as many players could not transfer due to objections from original club (I don't know any specifics around these cases).

I'd guess the new club will succeed eventually, the area south of Drogheda now has a big population but they obviously have a lot of work to get it off the ground.

Ironically the original club I'm talking about (St. Colmcilles) was, I believe formed by an amalgamation of 2 clubs from the area years ago when the area had a small population.

One of the best GAA clubs in Westmeath (Garycastle) I think in the 1980's started in a similar way to Eastern Gaels in Meath this year in that they were formed in a big population area that was served by only one club.
I don't know much about the Westmeath football scene but Garrycastle seems to show new clubs can work out well."
its near impossible to do that in an existing urban centre in Dublin, where land is at a premium.

a new club might get use of council pitches and prefabs but it would need a shamrock rovers like government donation to setup a club on private land to allow them to grow and facilitate the population. Ranelagh gaels do a great job for huge numbers of kids in parks and council pitches but it's difficult to see how they grow to compete with established clubs without their own land.

so existing clubs have to do their best to facilitate the numbers, because more and more parents of non-gaa backgrounds see it as a great thing for their kids to get involved in.

Kingcon (Dublin) - Posts: 14 - 15/11/2023 13:08:31    2513161

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Replying To Kingcon:  "its near impossible to do that in an existing urban centre in Dublin, where land is at a premium.

a new club might get use of council pitches and prefabs but it would need a shamrock rovers like government donation to setup a club on private land to allow them to grow and facilitate the population. Ranelagh gaels do a great job for huge numbers of kids in parks and council pitches but it's difficult to see how they grow to compete with established clubs without their own land.

so existing clubs have to do their best to facilitate the numbers, because more and more parents of non-gaa backgrounds see it as a great thing for their kids to get involved in."
The authorities, in Dublin at least, are quite clearly pumping public funding into soccer. Both the main Dublin clubs might as well be owned by the state. One in particular which ludicrously describes itself as a "people's club" is only that if you believe that the local authority ought to keep something going that would be bankrupt were it down to its own membership and support base.

GAA clubs and indeed the genuine local soccer clubs in Dublin meanwhile find their playing spaces under threat as this continues.

BarneyGrant (Dublin) - Posts: 2511 - 15/11/2023 13:14:51    2513162

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Replying To Kingcon:  "its near impossible to do that in an existing urban centre in Dublin, where land is at a premium.

a new club might get use of council pitches and prefabs but it would need a shamrock rovers like government donation to setup a club on private land to allow them to grow and facilitate the population. Ranelagh gaels do a great job for huge numbers of kids in parks and council pitches but it's difficult to see how they grow to compete with established clubs without their own land.

so existing clubs have to do their best to facilitate the numbers, because more and more parents of non-gaa backgrounds see it as a great thing for their kids to get involved in."
When you look at what the county board have invested in Hollystown and Spawell - it gives an example of the problem that faces club in Dublin.

Hollystown was 15 mill plus and the cost to build four pitches and a clubhouse pavilion is 6.6 millio - 21 million in total.

Spawell 9 million and probably another 6.6 million to put in a clubhouse pavilion and four pitches if we take Hollystown as the lead.

Total cost is ball park: 37.2 million. Most other counties COE dont break £5mill.

Its impossible for a new club to get their own grounds, huge problem for the games here as the population continues to grow.

What else can club like Crokes or Ballyboden do - turn kids away at the door or try and accommodate them broadening their teams, the games after all are about participation.

TheUsername (Dublin) - Posts: 4443 - 15/11/2023 14:05:32    2513175

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Replying To BarneyGrant:  "The authorities, in Dublin at least, are quite clearly pumping public funding into soccer. Both the main Dublin clubs might as well be owned by the state. One in particular which ludicrously describes itself as a "people's club" is only that if you believe that the local authority ought to keep something going that would be bankrupt were it down to its own membership and support base.

GAA clubs and indeed the genuine local soccer clubs in Dublin meanwhile find their playing spaces under threat as this continues."
Too lefty for the centrist da's it appears

Breffni40 (Cavan) - Posts: 12115 - 15/11/2023 14:35:12    2513185

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Replying To TheUsername:  "When you look at what the county board have invested in Hollystown and Spawell - it gives an example of the problem that faces club in Dublin.

Hollystown was 15 mill plus and the cost to build four pitches and a clubhouse pavilion is 6.6 millio - 21 million in total.

Spawell 9 million and probably another 6.6 million to put in a clubhouse pavilion and four pitches if we take Hollystown as the lead.

Total cost is ball park: 37.2 million. Most other counties COE dont break £5mill.

Its impossible for a new club to get their own grounds, huge problem for the games here as the population continues to grow.

What else can club like Crokes or Ballyboden do - turn kids away at the door or try and accommodate them broadening their teams, the games after all are about participation."
the games after all are about participation

unfortunately there seems to be some kind of fantasy that Dublin clubs are all about accumulating membership so they can pay out dividends to phantom shareholders. the reality is that increasing membership means increasing cost to facilitate it all, but let's not let the truth get in the way of the fantasy

Kingcon (Dublin) - Posts: 14 - 15/11/2023 14:41:39    2513187

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Replying To Breffni40:  "Too lefty for the centrist da's it appears"
What sort of lefty is dependent on the state and property developers? Stupid question, most of them since it started to mean stuff that James Connolly would have had them thrown into the Liffey for.

I'm not a "centrist" by the way :-)

BarneyGrant (Dublin) - Posts: 2511 - 15/11/2023 16:44:29    2513208

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It is very much a supply and demand issue. Big clubs in cities can charge higher membership rates as they know their is demand and don't mind too much if families decide not to send their kids as they have huge numbers anyway. Smaller clubs in rural areas need to get try and get all kids paying to continue to field teams and have lower memberships rates to try and get them into the club. This leads to small clubs having to run lots of fund raisers, lotto's etc to continue to function. I'm sure if the GAA did some analysis on membership rates across urban and rural areas there would be huge descrepancies.

journeyman (Limerick) - Posts: 107 - 15/11/2023 17:03:08    2513215

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Replying To Kingcon:  "the games after all are about participation

unfortunately there seems to be some kind of fantasy that Dublin clubs are all about accumulating membership so they can pay out dividends to phantom shareholders. the reality is that increasing membership means increasing cost to facilitate it all, but let's not let the truth get in the way of the fantasy"
Its why some of the posts in this thread are so sad and in a way indicative of the urban/rural land and financial divide - sure just set up new clubs why dont yee. Sadly everyone sees the game from their own situation out.


8 pitches in Dublin cost 37 million euro to buy and develop.

TheUsername (Dublin) - Posts: 4443 - 15/11/2023 17:59:16    2513227

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Replying To Kingcon:  "its near impossible to do that in an existing urban centre in Dublin, where land is at a premium.

a new club might get use of council pitches and prefabs but it would need a shamrock rovers like government donation to setup a club on private land to allow them to grow and facilitate the population. Ranelagh gaels do a great job for huge numbers of kids in parks and council pitches but it's difficult to see how they grow to compete with established clubs without their own land.

so existing clubs have to do their best to facilitate the numbers, because more and more parents of non-gaa backgrounds see it as a great thing for their kids to get involved in."
I don't think (?) the new club I was talking about own their own facilities at the moment, it might not be easy for them to buy land, I would imagine a lot of people up there wouldn't be that keen to sell land on outskirts of built up areas as they may be thinking that in the future there is a chance the land could be sold for housing development in the future.

The numbers you hear quoted for Kilmacud Crokes (usually the stereotypical 'Super Club' you think of) are ridicilious, you hear KCs catchment is bigger than some counties (if someone has comparsion figures for catchment between Leitrim and KC it would be interesting).

Does a stage ever come where a club gets too big?.
I think clubs sometimes get too big which distorts competition and becomes a barrier to getting people into the game.

I don't know the specifics of the various large clubs in Dublin.
Some of them may have one set of pitches, some of them may have more.
As has been said maybe in a lot of Dublin it's nearly impossible to see a new club being able to spring up organically, in this case would it be wrong if county board/ central GAA stepped in to try to split clubs ?(as happened in Tralee in 1920's when 1 club was split into 3).

If a club has more than one ground this could simplify splitting a club (do many clubs have in Dublin have 2 grounds?, a few clubs in Meath do).
Could school pitches in areas be used by clubs who don't own their own ground?
Previously I mentioned 2 clubs in Kildare (Clogherinkoe and Broadford) came together years ago to buy land for facilities, could 2 clubs in Dublin share facilities?. (OK, the fact that in the Kildare example the 2 neighboring clubs concentrated on different codes helped but just used the example to show sharing a ground is possible).

bdbuddah (Meath) - Posts: 1332 - 15/11/2023 22:05:56    2513257

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Replying To Kingcon:  "the games after all are about participation

unfortunately there seems to be some kind of fantasy that Dublin clubs are all about accumulating membership so they can pay out dividends to phantom shareholders. the reality is that increasing membership means increasing cost to facilitate it all, but let's not let the truth get in the way of the fantasy"
Can someone name all the super clubs

Edd,South(EU) (Monaghan) - Posts: 35 - 16/11/2023 08:58:31    2513272

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My club in Dublin is a super club.
We have super members.
We operate in a super community.
We have super volunteers who look after our teams of super players who pay to play GAA.
We have super volunteers who toil on a daily basis to ensure we have the best possible ( perhaps not as super as we would like) facilities for our teams.
We have super volunteers who work hard to ensure we can raise enough finance to keep the club running and growing to cater for all our super members.
We have super sponsors who appreciate the ethos of our club and who generously support our efforts.
We don't turn away people who wish to join us and we certainly don't put up advertising signs to invite local children to Trials....all children are always welcome irrespective of their abilities.

Are we doing something wrong?

BlueBeret (Dublin) - Posts: 54 - 16/11/2023 10:01:13    2513280

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Replying To BlueBeret:  "My club in Dublin is a super club.
We have super members.
We operate in a super community.
We have super volunteers who look after our teams of super players who pay to play GAA.
We have super volunteers who toil on a daily basis to ensure we have the best possible ( perhaps not as super as we would like) facilities for our teams.
We have super volunteers who work hard to ensure we can raise enough finance to keep the club running and growing to cater for all our super members.
We have super sponsors who appreciate the ethos of our club and who generously support our efforts.
We don't turn away people who wish to join us and we certainly don't put up advertising signs to invite local children to Trials....all children are always welcome irrespective of their abilities.

Are we doing something wrong?"
That depends.

How many junior, intermediate and rural clubs have you pilfered from over the years and just how wealthy are your sponsors?

cavanman47 (Cavan) - Posts: 5009 - 16/11/2023 10:20:27    2513291

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Replying To bdbuddah:  "I don't think (?) the new club I was talking about own their own facilities at the moment, it might not be easy for them to buy land, I would imagine a lot of people up there wouldn't be that keen to sell land on outskirts of built up areas as they may be thinking that in the future there is a chance the land could be sold for housing development in the future.

The numbers you hear quoted for Kilmacud Crokes (usually the stereotypical 'Super Club' you think of) are ridicilious, you hear KCs catchment is bigger than some counties (if someone has comparsion figures for catchment between Leitrim and KC it would be interesting).

Does a stage ever come where a club gets too big?.
I think clubs sometimes get too big which distorts competition and becomes a barrier to getting people into the game.

I don't know the specifics of the various large clubs in Dublin.
Some of them may have one set of pitches, some of them may have more.
As has been said maybe in a lot of Dublin it's nearly impossible to see a new club being able to spring up organically, in this case would it be wrong if county board/ central GAA stepped in to try to split clubs ?(as happened in Tralee in 1920's when 1 club was split into 3).

If a club has more than one ground this could simplify splitting a club (do many clubs have in Dublin have 2 grounds?, a few clubs in Meath do).
Could school pitches in areas be used by clubs who don't own their own ground?
Previously I mentioned 2 clubs in Kildare (Clogherinkoe and Broadford) came together years ago to buy land for facilities, could 2 clubs in Dublin share facilities?. (OK, the fact that in the Kildare example the 2 neighboring clubs concentrated on different codes helped but just used the example to show sharing a ground is possible)."
there aren't enough facilities in Dublin to facilitate existing membership, even those with more than one ground....so how would splitting up a club to use the exact same facilities help anything?
schools, rugby grounds, parks, council pitches are all being rented 7 days a week by Dublin GAA clubs. the private land owned by these clubs probably caters for about 40% of the playing numbers, maybe less

Kingcon (Dublin) - Posts: 14 - 16/11/2023 10:42:21    2513296

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Replying To BlueBeret:  "My club in Dublin is a super club.
We have super members.
We operate in a super community.
We have super volunteers who look after our teams of super players who pay to play GAA.
We have super volunteers who toil on a daily basis to ensure we have the best possible ( perhaps not as super as we would like) facilities for our teams.
We have super volunteers who work hard to ensure we can raise enough finance to keep the club running and growing to cater for all our super members.
We have super sponsors who appreciate the ethos of our club and who generously support our efforts.
We don't turn away people who wish to join us and we certainly don't put up advertising signs to invite local children to Trials....all children are always welcome irrespective of their abilities.

Are we doing something wrong?"
Doesn't sound like it. Fair play to you.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 11683 - 16/11/2023 10:51:01    2513299

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Replying To Kingcon:  "there aren't enough facilities in Dublin to facilitate existing membership, even those with more than one ground....so how would splitting up a club to use the exact same facilities help anything?
schools, rugby grounds, parks, council pitches are all being rented 7 days a week by Dublin GAA clubs. the private land owned by these clubs probably caters for about 40% of the playing numbers, maybe less"
The strength of the GAA in Ireland historically is that it is close to communities. When clubs get too big you start losing this.

Playing for a fourth or fifth team at a club must feel like playing for a soccer team in the Phoenix Park on a Sunday morning, hard to feel your playing for something important.

Mad to think clubs with a catchment area similar to some counties are competing for a county championship.

bdbuddah (Meath) - Posts: 1332 - 16/11/2023 18:22:15    2513406

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I don't think there is anyone questioning the work that the Super clubs do. The point is that the huge catchment areas lead to huge numbers at Juvenile level but possibly fall off in participation into adult level due to children being part of the lower level teams. An average player in rural area on a first team is more likely to keep playing that a better player on on Team F for example with a Super Club. I heard about a study that was done on child participation and the fall out as children reach teenage age. The biggest reason was not feeling included and wanted by the coaches. Providing more clubs in Urban areas would address this.

journeyman (Limerick) - Posts: 107 - 17/11/2023 16:19:12    2513528

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Question.
Kerry divisional teams are not allowed compete in senior provisional and All Ireland club championships.
'Super clubs' such as Kilmacud Crokes must have a catchment area far far bigger than the Kerry divisional teams. Should clubs like this also be excluded from senior provisional and All Ireland club championships??

bdbuddah (Meath) - Posts: 1332 - 17/11/2023 19:51:28    2513551

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Replying To journeyman:  "I don't think there is anyone questioning the work that the Super clubs do. The point is that the huge catchment areas lead to huge numbers at Juvenile level but possibly fall off in participation into adult level due to children being part of the lower level teams. An average player in rural area on a first team is more likely to keep playing that a better player on on Team F for example with a Super Club. I heard about a study that was done on child participation and the fall out as children reach teenage age. The biggest reason was not feeling included and wanted by the coaches. Providing more clubs in Urban areas would address this."
As said before, the big clubs in Dublin field huge numbers of teams. Crokes, Boden, Fianna have lads playing in low junior in both codes, So its certainly not the case that they turn people away. Ironically, the fact that they do is often complained about by clubs like my own!

Nearly all of the top senior clubs won or came close to winning lower grade competitions which meant that could theoretically have two sides even in Senior A, or B. They can't of course,

I have to say too, from my own experience, that clubs like Boden when they host Feile in Dublin could not be any more welcoming to teams from smaller clubs and the level of organisation they put in is admirable. As above, alternative to the "super clubs2 is for them be made limit numbers and turn people away. In areas where there are no other clubs.

BarneyGrant (Dublin) - Posts: 2511 - 18/11/2023 09:07:23    2513576

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Replying To cavanman47:  "That depends.

How many junior, intermediate and rural clubs have you pilfered from over the years and just how wealthy are your sponsors?"
why are cavan people so bitter as a matter of interest?

Stmunnsriver (Wexford) - Posts: 2838 - 18/11/2023 09:34:52    2513583

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Replying To bdbuddah:  "Question.
Kerry divisional teams are not allowed compete in senior provisional and All Ireland club championships.
'Super clubs' such as Kilmacud Crokes must have a catchment area far far bigger than the Kerry divisional teams. Should clubs like this also be excluded from senior provisional and All Ireland club championships??"
No Divisional teams are allowed not just Kerry ones. Same in Colleges A, no combined schools are allowed in the AI series. Crokes are one club, built up over many years of hard work by the members. Fair play to them.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 11683 - 18/11/2023 10:30:00    2513591

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