The winners of the 2018 MacNamee Awards have been confirmed by the GAA.
The GAA National Communication and Media Awards are named after the late Pádraig MacNamee, former President of the GAA, Chairman of the GAA Commission (1969-1971) and member of the RTÉ authority.
They are presented annually in recognition of outstanding contributions made by individuals and Association units in the area of media and communications.
The awards will be presented by Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael, Seán Ó hOráin, at a function in Croke Park, tomorrow Saturday, May 11th.
The GAA President offered his congratulations to this year’s winners. He said:
“Congratulations to all of our award winners and to everyone involved in the background with these successful projects.
“The GAA is not just about winning on the field. It is about projecting a positive image of the organisation and adding to everything the games do for the GAA. These winning entries certainly do that.
“Media coverage of our games has always been important to the growth and profiling of our activities and similarly, the role of our own units in showcasing what they do is critical.
“I laud everyone who works hard to promote the GAA in the public arena, not least those people who we will honour at Croke Park tomorrow evening.”
The winners of the 2018 MacNamee Awards are as follows:
2018 Best Website – O'Dwyer’s GAA, Balbriggan, Co Dublin
O’Dwyer’s GAA have provided an excellent website for all its club members. The Mobile UX is strong, showing evidence of high standard web design planning with its great visual and technical design. The website has clear navigation paths making it simple for members to intuitively find relevant information.
The O’Dwyer’s GAA website responds quickly and is mobile-friendly. Website tools function well and are placed on the page in convenient areas for the user. Among its many impressive features are the Roll of Honour, ‘ Ready to get involved?’ and Featured Videos sections, along with a well-functioning, up to date Fixtures & Results section. This website serves as a great way to inform O’Dwyer’s members and it instils trust in the club online.
2018 Provincial Media Award – ‘Limerick Leader Souvenir Edition - 2018 All-Ireland Champions: This Means Everything’
It was a memorable and magical campaign for Limerick, who had waited 45 years to hoist the Liam MacCarthy Cup. A dramatic All Ireland Final is recalled in the Limerick Leader’s splendid supplement following the success.
From the iconic image of an embracing Nicky Quaid and Cian Lynch on the front cover, to the scenes of the triumphant homecoming in the final pages, the supplement is packed with interviews, analysis, commentary, and plenty of passion.
The Limerick Leader has supplied excellent coverage in this 64-page edition of a famous green and white triumph.
2018 National Media Award – The Herald - ‘Decades of the Dubs’
The Herald’s superb three-part magazine series, ‘Decades of the Dubs’, wasn’t just a real treat for Dublin football supporters, but for fans of sporting nostalgia in general.
Covering the successes and failures of Dublin football teams from the 1950s to the 1990s, ‘Decades of the Dubs’ was a comprehensive, informative, and entertaining read.
Beautifully illustrated with evocative and rare photographs of great days from the past, the three-part series was also chock-full of revealing interviews with legendary
Dublin footballers, as well as the sort of statistics and trivia that are manna from heaven for GAA anoraks. Both in terms of style as well as substance, the Herald’s ‘Decades of the Dubs’ series was a truly remarkable production. The magazines were produced by Joe Davitt and Kevin Nolan from the Herald.
2018 Best Programme – Roscommon GAA - Roscommon Senior Football Championship Final Programme
A publication that seamlessly matched both style and substance over 80 easy-to-read pages. The team layouts and player profiles scored highly for their clarity and production, while the editorial articles were a nice mix of both the historical and the contemporary.
All the bases were covered with referee profiles, well-designed statistical data, and two pages for the next generation of young supporters. Another notable mention is the prominence given to minor games that is sometimes lacking in other match programmes. A complete, good-value programme that is a worthy McNamee Award winner.
2018 Best GAA Related Radio Programme – SouthEast Radio - ‘The Wexford Rising - They Set the Heathers Blazing’
The 1950’s were a golden period for Wexford Hurling, when boys became men and those men became heroes. This documentary, presented and produced by Alan Corcoran, charts the journey of the Wexford Senior Hurling team who won back to back All-Irelands in 1955 and 1956, and the impact they had on the county, with names like Wheeler, Rackard, O’Donnell, Kehoe and Foley still revered to this day.
Art Foley and Ned Wheeler, stalwart members of the team, share their memories of the games and the build-up, while former Leinster GAA Chairman, the late Sheamus Howlin, talks about his friendship with Billy Rackard, and the bond the players had with the people of Wexford. Legendary GAA broadcaster Mícheál Ó Muircheartaigh also pays tribute to the famous Rackard Brothers.
Memories of the homecomings, the journeys to Croke Park, the joy of victory and the massive boost it gave to the county and the game of hurling, added to by a rousing rendition of 'Cúchulainn's Son' (a tribute to Nicky Rackard) sung by George Lawlor, are all shared in this documentary, a tribute to a band of brothers who ‘set the heathers blazing’ and brought hurling to a new level in County Wexford.
2018 Gradam Gaeilge (Irish Language Award) – Na Gaeil Óga 15/15
Físeán atá againn anseo ar chlub beag nua, a bhfuil croí mór aige, Na Gaeil Óga. Bhí 14 cluiche as 14 buaite acu i Roinn 6 de Shraith Shóisearach Peile Átha Ciath agus bhí siad ag iarraidh an bhliain a chríochnú le 15 bua as 15. Leanann Seán T. Ó Meallaigh agus a cheamara an fhoireann thart sa chluiche deireanach seo. Sampla iontach é seo den iriseoireacht nua-aimseartha, a thugann blaisín beag dúinn den teannas, den díocas, den uaillmhian, den thuas seal agus den thíos seal a bhaineann le foirne agus iad páirteach i gcluichí móra. Feiceann muid cumhacht ‘an chlub’ san fhíseán seo agus léirítear dúinn go mbíonn i bhfad níos mó i gceist le clubanna ná foirne spóirt. Is ‘clann’ iad Na Gaeil Óga agus tagann sé sin trasna san fhíseán iontach seo a dhéanann ceiliúradh ar éachtaí Na Gaeil Óga i 2018.
2018 Best Photograph – Brendan Moran, Sportsfile
This winning picture by Brendan Moran of Sportsfile features Seán Finn of Limerick as he celebrates after the final whistle had blown in the GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Championship Final match between Galway and Limerick at Croke Park in Dublin.
The image captures the sheer delight and unforgettable moment of ultimate success and proves that hard work, training in wet weather and the weekends away from family are worth it for that memorable win.
2018 Best GAA Club Publication – ‘October 2000: St. Anne's GAA Club - A History of Rathangan Gaelic Games’ by Jim Berry
A publication over 20 years in the making, October 2000 is a labour of love for Jim Berry, who played with St. Anne's for the best part of 30 years from the mid-1950s onwards. Jim has been a mentor and official at all levels as well as attaining high office himself as a former Chairman of Wexford County Board and the Leinster Council, but it’s his pride for the St Anne’s club that exudes from every page of this book.
The title, ‘October 2000’, relates to the unique feat that year when the club won the senior football and hurling double, with 13 players playing both codes, and book documents Gaelic Games in the Rathangan parish, a reasonably small rural area of about 1,800 people, from 1884 to the present day.
As well as being an incredibly detailed and well put-together record of the club’s history over the decades, the book also recounts many amusing tales and stories of years gone by.
2018 Best GAA Publication - ‘The Story of Interprovincial Football’ by Dermot Kavanagh
‘The Story of Interprovincial Football’ traces the history of interprovincial football competitions from the beginning in 1905, following the rise to their heyday of the forties, fifties and sixties, and up to the modern era.
The books details each year’s competition from its various iterations as the Railway Shield, the Tailteann Games, The Railway Cup and finally the M Donnelly Cup, delving into match reports and press cuttings as well as providing a wealth of images across its 185 pages. Particularly striking are the rare photos gathered of the early years of the competitions, a terrific snapshot of Gaelic football in its first few decades.
Author Dermot Kavanagh, who penned this publication’s hurling counterpart several years previous, takes the utmost care in compiling a detail record of the history of the interprovincial football series in a compact and well-researched book, which was judged highly on content and accessibility.
2018 Best New Digital Initiative – Derry GAA - ‘The Men Who Won Maguire’
‘The Men Who Won Maguire’ was inspired by Derry’s first All-Ireland senior football title in 1993, the 25th anniversary of which was celebrated with a special gala evening
in November of 2018. The evening was multi-media driven and interactive in nature, with players from the winning panel invited to experience live the recollections and thoughts of former opponents, and to share their reactions and memories of the championship campaign.
Collected over a series of months with the co-operation of the players, new digital material was edited and broken down into bitesize chunks, before being strategically
published. The story of each game along the campaign was told with humour, pride and poignancy with the memory of the late Eamon Coleman a constant theme throughout.
The campaign developed a reach beyond sport - becoming a celebration of the culture and tradition of county Derry - with the reading of Seamus Heaney's poem, 'Markings', by the players of 1993.
‘The Men Who Won Maguire’ amassed almost half a million combined video views across social media and was a fitting tribute to an historic achievement, presented for a new and digital age twenty-five years on from Derry GAA's greatest sporting achievement.
Hall Of Fame – John Quirke
John Quirke has been the official Leinster GAA Photographer for over 30 years. His excellent photographs have been appearing over those years in match programmes, publications of record and GAA websites. In fact, he has been a long-standing man behind the lens for the GAA at every level, and also for local and national media and other Gaelic games publications.
John is a sports photographer ‘par excellence’, highly respected by his peers. He is well recognised for his total professionalism, his dedication to quality photos delivered to deadline, his calmness in every situation, his willingness to cover Gaelic games action at every level, at any venue, at any time of day and in every kind of weather. He does all this in a most obliging manner, without fuss and always respecting the players and the occasion.
He is painstaking in his photography, has a great eye for the shot and has amassed a huge, and valuable, collection of club and county action over the years. A quiet and unassuming person, whose service and value to the GAA is great and greatly recognised, John is more comfortable behind the lens than being the subject of it.
Tonight he is rightly awarded for a lifetime dedication and service to our Association. We wish him well in his continuing work.