Northern Ireland news

Linda Ervine to be president of new east Belfast GAA club

Linda Ervine has agreed to become the president of a new GAA club in east Belfast
Connla Young

Prominent Irish language campaigner Linda Ervine has agreed to take on the role of president at a planned new GAA club in east Belfast.

It has also emerged that Malone Rugby Club, which is based on the Cregagh Road, has offered its meeting facilities to the fledgling GAA club on an interim basis.

The plan to set up a new club in the east of the city was revealed by the Irish News this week.

READ MORE: Huge response to plans to set up new GAA club in east Belfast

The last club to play at adult level in the district, St Colmcille's GAC, went out of existence in the early 1970s.

Last night one of those behind the plan, Co Down native David McGreevy, said he has been inundated by people seeking to become involved.

He said that around 100 people have expressed an interest in joining the club and 45 people have said they are available to play men and woman's football, hurling and camogie.

Mr McGreevy, who played Gaelic football for London in the 2013 Connaught final, said the club hopes to field a team in the Down junior championship this year if the competition goes ahead.

Mr McGreevy also plays football for his home club of Teconnaught, near Downpatrick, and rugby for Belfast based Instonians.

He added that he hopes to affiliate the new club, which has yet to be named, shortly and that its first annual general meeting could be held within a week.

“It's positive and it's great to see there's so many people willing to get involved,” he said.

“The vast majority of people have not been part of a club before bet they are fans of (the GAA) and I suppose this is their club now,” he said.

Ms Ervine said she was happy to take on the new role.

“I believe in what the guys are doing and I think it's a fantastic initiative and its cross-community, it's going to bring young people together,” she said.

A spokesman for Malone Rugby Club said it hopes to meet representatives of the new GAA club next week.

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