THE GAA’s Central Council has moved to intervene with a proposal to rescind the affiliation of an Irish Guards team to the London County Board.
As revealed by The Irish Post at the weekend, the London County Board had notified clubs of the proposal made by hurling club Granuaile ahead of Monday night’s monthly meeting.
The meeting is set to be the first held by chairperson John Lacey – a Granuaile clubman – since his return to the chair having previously been elected in 1995.
An e-mail sent from the County Board to club representatives last week read:
A Chara, in accordance with Rule 4.3 Voting T.O. 2015 (p58) I have been requested by Granuaile Hurling Club to notify all members of the London County Committee of their intention to propose the rescindment of the decision to approve the affiliation of the Irish Guards as a club to London County Committee. Could all clubs please ensure that their club delegates are briefed and mandated on this proposal.
However, a GAA spokesperson has now informed The Irish Post that, as a matter of procedure, the board have been ordered by headquarters not to discuss the issue at January’s meeting:
The GAA at central level has procedural issues with the suggestion that a club affiliation could be rescinded at this evening’s meeting and has requested that any discussion or decision be put on hold until after scheduled meetings of Management and Central Council this weekend.
The Irish Guards, a regiment of the British Army who will play Gaelic football under the name Garda Eireannach, are entitled to compete in London’s junior competitions this year after gaining affiliation via a vote at the County Board meeting in September, 2015.
Former London GAA chairperson Noel O’Sullivan cast the deciding vote following a deadlock in the room.
It made history as the Irish Guards became the first army regiment to gain affiliation to the GAA as British security forces were banned from playing Gaelic games until 2001 under Rule 21.
Their squad is made up of players from all four provinces of Ireland, as well as members from Fiji and South Africa, and it is not necessary to be an Irish Guard to play for the side.
London GAA’s County Board meeting takes place at the Irish TV Grounds in Ruislip at 8.30pm on January 11, 2016.