Proud 138-year history of rugby in Clonmel in superb new book


Proud 138-year history of rugby in Clonmel in superb new book

Mayor of Clonmel Cllr Siobhán Ambrose who launched "A History of Clonmel Rugby Football Club" at their home grounds at Ard Gaoithe, Clonmel, on Thursday morning last.

Clonmel Rugby Club last week launched its “History of Clonmel Rugby Football Club,” a well produced book which covers comprehensively and very interestingly its proud history since it was founded way back in 1882. 

In her address for the ‘launch’ last Thursday morning at Ard Gaoithe, the Mayor of Clonmel, Cllr Siobhán Ambrose, praised one of the town’s oldest sporting clubs and its remarkable achievements driven primarily by the dedication of committed volunteers.   

“First and foremost, I would like to thank the editorial committee namely Tom Fennessey, Jimmy Harney, Paul Lonergan, Phil Corby and John McCarthy for the enormous amount of time and effort that has gone into the publication of this very first book on the club’s history.

“Clonmel Rugby Club has played a huge role in the sporting history of our town since its foundation  in 1882. In those intervening years - 138 years to be precise - hundreds of young men and in recent years young women have enjoyed being members of Clonmel Rugby Club.

“Today, as we stand on the grounds of Clonmel RFC, I would like to pay tribute to the club’s committee members and coaches, all volunteers without whom the club would not have survived. Today and down through the years these volunteers have given so much of  their time and dedication to coaching the many  teams while simultaneously fundraising to provide its members with the outstanding facilities that they enjoy today.” 

The editorial team for the book - the "front five who made all the hard yards" - from left: Phil Corby, Tom Fennessey, Jimmy Harney, Paul Lonergan and John McCarthy.

“This book is a fitting tribute to all of the club’s members and supporters down through the years with many of these familiar faces past and present photographed throughout the 193 pages. I have no doubt that this beautifully presented book will provide its readers with many hours of enjoyment, debate and laughter as they recall games and players from both recent and bygone days.

“In conclusion, I have no doubt that this book will be thoroughly enjoyed by all who read it and with that it gives me great pleasure to officially launch A History of Clonmel Rugby Football Club and to wish the club continued success for the future,” added the Mayor.


Speaking at the launch on Thursday last of A History of Clonmel Rugby Club, club president Bob Campion said it was a great honour for him to preside over another significant milestone in the evolution of the club. 

In praising the “comprehensive club history”, the president said that the numerous milestones over the years combine to provide a remarkable story. 

“Those who founded the club in 1882 could never have envisaged the eventual sporting achievements and the outstanding communal endeavour which has placed us in such a great position today.

The front cover of the book, an aerial shot of the impressive home grounds at Ard Gaoithe, Clonmel.

“Every club is a reflection of its members, their energy, their ambition and their willingness to commit to projects which might take several years to come to fruition. It is an opportune time to thank all those who contributed, whether by playing or performing the myriad of small tasks that must be undertaken in the background. It is a time to remember those members who are no longer with us but who will never be forgotten for their endeavours,” added Mr Campion.

“It is a time to remember all those who built this club into the wonderful rugby community that has become a vital aspect of the sporting and social fabric of this area and to thank those who continue to maintain that wonderful spirit for which Clonmel RFC is renowned. This is a story which merits recounting,” concluded the club president.

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