Athletics Ireland Constitution Debated at Jury’s

The new Constitution for Athletics Ireland was the subject of discussion at Jury’s Hotel in Cork today.  The attendance was disappointing, with only seven of the forty or so Cork clubs represented.  Clubs in Waterford, Tipperary Kerry and Limerick were also represented. The top table included practically all the officers of Athletics Ireland, each of whom went through a section of the new draft constitution. They explained that every part of the document can be changed at the constitutional congress to be held over the October bank holiday weekend in Dublin.  Proposed changes must be with the national secretary by 4th October.  The new constitution proposes that a club must have a minimum of twenty members, four of whom must be over 21 years of age, something that one club felt would favour the so called big clubs.  There is no place for a PRO or Registrar in the new officer set-up, and, it was explained, there would be no need for them at county level either.  However, another part of the document stated that an athlete transferring from one club to another would have to submit their transfer form to the county registrar!  According to international secretary Christy Wall there are some twenty five athletes competing with British clubs at present, and this number is expected to increase to sixty in the coming year.  In future athletes will need permission to compete with foreign clubs.  The oldest category for veteran women competing is over fifty and over seventy for men.  Asked about the difference, it was stated the ages were submitted by the veteran athletics association.  The officers of AAI are optimistic that over half the 300 clubs in Ireland will be represented at the congress in Dublin next month, but, judging by the turn-out on Saturday, this would appear unlikely.