THE EARLY YEARS
During the 1960’s a new game for girls emerged. Playing Gaelic football was something new. Girls of course, had played soccer but the idea of girls playing gaelic football startled many. In the sixties seven-a-side girls football matches usually played at carnivals or festivals led to clubs staring in places like Clann na nGael, Ballintubber and at Lisnamult in Roscommon town. The Clann na nGael club was founded by P.J. Lennon. In Ballintubber Marie Holland and others promoted the game and in Lisnamult the game became quite well organised. Roscommon County Council also got a team together with Pat Burke the trainer. The best of the teams was Clann na nGael who had numerous matches with teams in County Offaly. Finally it was decided that the time was ripe to put the game on an organised level county-wise.
At the request of Michael Naughton, Hon. Secretary of the Lisnamult club, a meeting was called for Naugton’s house in Lisnamult. So it came about that meeting – the first – was held on Wednesday, 26th June, 1974 to form a county board. The following people attended that first meeting : P.J. Lennon, Elizabeth O’Brien, Patrick Burke, Margaret Flanagan, Marie Holland, Anne Naughton, Patricia Kilroe, Anne Crean and Michael Naughton.
The following Officers were elected :
Chairperson: Miss Marie Holland
Secretary and Treasurer: Michael Naughton
P.R.O.: Michael Naughton
A set of rules were drawn up and plans outlined for the immediate future. In the next few weeks a good deal of progress was made with the commencement of a County Championship. Clann na nGael were the first champions. They neat Ballintubber at the C.B.S. field, Roscommon by 3 gls. 6pts. to 4gls. 2 pts.
Early in 1975, in fact on 31st January, 1975, delegates from Roscommon attended the Convention in Hayes Hotel, Thurles. The Roscommon delegates were: Marie Holland, Margaret Flanagan, Ann Dolan and Michael Naughton. Marie Holland was elected Assistant Secretary of Central Council – a great honour for the young Roscommon County Board. As can be appreciated the game had many teething troubles in County Roscommon. However, such was the enthusiasm and the sheer hard work undertaken by the County Board that giant strides were made in that first year.