Northern Ireland news

Tributes to Co Down cleric Dean Anthony Davies who was 'great supporter of Gaelic Games'

Dean Anthony Davies passed away in Newry on Sunday
Marie Louise McConville

A CO Down cleric has been described as "a great supporter of Gaelic Games...who brought his own "wisdom, guidance and humour to many of the clubs" he served, following his death at the age of 88.

The Right Reverend Dean Anthony Davies died on Sunday at Ardmaine Nursing Home in Newry.

Requiem Mass took place yesterday at St John the Evangelist Church, Ballymaghery in Hilltown.

Burial took place afterwards in adjoining cemetery.

Dean Davies, who was a retired parish priest of Clonduff in the Diocese of Dromore, was well known in GAA circles in the area and had strong connections with the sport.

As well as being a former President of Clonduff GAA Club, he was also a former joint President of the Down Camogie Board.

The popular cleric was also a former Club Chairman of Ballyholland Harps GAC and had also managed its Senior Team in 1963 when it won the Junior Championship. He had also been a player.

Born in 1932 in Tandragee, Co Armagh, Dean Davies was ordained in 1959 and undertook his first posting as a curate in Donaghmore before moving to Lower Drumgooland.

He then transferred to Newry in 1962 where he remained until 1980, when he moved to Rostrevor.

In 1990, Dean Davies moved to Dromara where he remained until 1995.

He then moved to Clonduff where he remained from 1995 until he retired in August 2009 to Rostrevor.

Posting on Facebook, Clonduff GAC described Dean Davies as "one of life's gentlemen".

St John's GAA posted that Dean Davies had, for more than 60 years, been "a great supporter of Gaelic Games and in all of his ministry he was active in GAA Clubs wherever he served, bringing his own wisdom, guidance and humour to many of those clubs in our county".

The club said each year, clubs in South Down compete in Reserve Football for the Fr Davies Shield, an acknowledgement of the dean's commitment to the sport.

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