By David Hennessy
The London Ladies Gaelic Football team are asking Irish businesses in London businesses to help it meet the cost of travelling to Ireland to play its fixtures.
On Saturday, London’s women footballers had to travel to play Longford at home in the Leinster final and face at least one more trip over there to meet its All-Ireland commitments.
Every “no-frills” trip costs £200 per panel member so the cost of transporting 26 players and staff back to Ireland for each game quickly mounts despite a “very reasonable” deal on flights with Ryanair.
London’s eleven women’s clubs raised £10,000 earlier this year and the London side has already travelled to Ireland for every one of its games.
London is home to the reigning Club All-Ireland Champions in Parnell’s, many of whose players are on the county team, but they and their fellow players find themselves at an unfair disadvantage as they aim for All-Ireland success at inter-county level.
Chairperson of the Ladies Board John Doyle said before this week-end’s Longford fixture: “Some county put in a proposal to Central Ladies Council in Ireland that because of the recession in Ireland, no team should have to travel to London to play in 2013. All the other officers voted for it and nobody from the management committee actually stood up for London so now we’re in this awkward situation where if London ladies want to compete in 2013, they have to travel to Ireland for every game.
“What we’re looking to do to generate more funds is to get each player in the squad sponsored for £200 and we’re reaching out to the London-Irish businesses to see who would be willing to do that. Any bit of help would be good.”
Several London-Irish businesses have expressed interest in helping out but anyone who would like to get in touch about possible sponsorship can contact Mary Daly on firstname.lastname@example.org or go to: http://londonladiesgaa.com/.