Northern Ireland news

Co Down teacher Timmy Doyle remembered as 'inspiration' following sudden death

Timmy Doyle was responsible for a project which aimed at improving numeracy amongst primary school pupils
John Monaghan

A CO DOWN teacher has been remembered as a "gentleman" and an "inspiration" following his sudden death at the age of 52.

Timmy Doyle, from Katesbridge, was well-known in teaching and GAA circles across the north.

It is understood he died while out walking on Friday.

He worked as a teacher at St Mary's PS in Banbridge and was a former committee member on the Down board of Cumann na mBunscol, which promotes gaelic games in primary schools.

He was also responsible for a project entitled Maths Improvement NI aimed at helping pupils who were struggling with numeracy.

A member of Liatroim Fontenoys and a fervent Down GAA supporter, he was a regular fixture cheering on the men in red and black at county games.

A notice from St Mary's PS said the school community was "deeply saddened by the passing of our esteemed colleague and friend".

SDLP councillor Seamus Doyle said his long-time neighbour and friend was "known far and wide".

"He was a very nice fella, a great conversationalist and great craic. He probably would have been in Croke Park (for the All-Ireland GAA final on Sunday)," he said.

Clann na Banna GAC in Banbridge said it wished to extend their deepest sympathy on the passing of a friend of the club and "local GAA enthusiast".

"We offer our sincere condolences to his brother Michael, our former manager and the entire family circle at this sad time," it said.

Dozens of people left their own tributes to the popular teacher and GAA coach on social media.

One wrote: "Many fond memories from my time in your class in St Mary's, brilliant teacher and a true gael.

Another added that it was "shocking news".

"Best teacher I ever had and the reason so many of us played gaelic."

In a post on Facebook, St Mary's Parent Teacher Association wrote: "Mr Doyle was well regarded and a highly inspirational teacher, whom a lot of our own children had the pleasure of knowing.

"Our heartfelt condolences to his family and all those who will mourn his passing."

Requiem Mass for Mr Doyle will be celebrated at St Mary's Church in Dechomet at 1pm today, followed by burial in the adjoining cemetery.

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