Roscrea Hurling Club open New Stand and honour men of 1971

Last Saturday was a special day for Roscrea Hurling Club as they opened a magnificent new spectator stand at St. Cronan’s Park and honoured their 1971 All-Ireland Club Championship winning heroes.

Proceedings began with an exhibition game between Roscrea and St. Rynagh’s who contested the first ever All-Ireland Club championship 50 years ago in December 1971. The original final was played in Birr and was refereed by Cork’s Frank Murphy with Roscrea winning 4-5 to 2-5.

After the game, the formal proceedings began with MC and club secretary Proinnsias Loughnane inviting club patron Fr. Michael Harding to bless the new stand. This was followed by an address from club chairman Mark McLoughlin who welcomed everyone and in particular the guests of honour, members of the 1971 team.

He outlined the process behind the planning, funding and construction of the stand and paid tribute to all those who had helped make this club objective a reality. He thanked in particular the many businesses, families and individuals who had lent their financial backing to the project as sponsors. He then invited Club President Mick Hogan and 1971 winning captain Donie Moloney to join him in cutting the ribbon and officially opening the new stand.

This was followed by a presentation to the members of the All-Ireland winning team. Each member was presented with a beautifully inscribed wall plaque and a tie commemorating their unique achievement in winning the first ever All-Ireland club championship.

Those honoured were the late selectors: John Joe Maher (represented by his cousin Tom) Willie O’Reilly (represented by his son Tom), Billy Brussels (represented by his son Ger), Martin Loughnane (represented by his daughter Nuala), Jack Moloney (represented by his daughter Tess), Luke Carroll (represented by his great grandson Conor), Joe Cunningham (represented by his son Eamonn), Masseur Danny Moloney and players Tadhg Murphy, the late Kieran Carey (represented by his wife Nancy) Patsy Rowland, Mick Hogan, Jody Spooner, Willie Stapleton, he late Liam Brussels (represented by his son Paul), Micky Nolan, Francis Loughnane, Barney Hogan, Mick Minogue, Tadhg O’Connor, Brendan Maher, Aidan Spooner, the Pat Dynan (represented by his son Trevor), Liam Spooner, Jackie Shanahan, Donie Moloney, Joe Tynan, the Jackie Hannon (represented by Fearghus Hannon), Harry Loughnane (represented by his grandson Aaron), Joe Cunningham, Jimmy Crampton.

The occasion concluded with refreshments very sponsored by Pauline Loughnane served in the clubhouse where members of the Roscrea and St. Rynagh's 71 teams had an opportunity to mingle and remember old times.