PILTOWN LADIES GAELIC FOOTBALL CLUB was born in 2010. However, the story of Ladies Gaelic Football in Piltown precedes 2010. The game was played in the local national schools, particularly Piltown. This is where the seeds of the game came from. Like in any sport our education system is hugely important. There had been success in 1999 in the county INTO mini 7s for Piltown NS but Girls Gaelic Football really got into full flow in Piltown National School in 2005 when former Waterford player Ms Bridget Drohan came to the school to teach. In 2007, the girls again won the “Mini Sevens” in Kilkenny.
In 2008, a landmark was reached when the Primary Schools team won the Roinn B championship in Nowlan Park by beating Gowran by 5-6 to 2-2. In 2009, the School followed up with victory in the Roinn A final. It came after a replay with Thomastown in Nowlan Park when they comprehensively won by 10-1 to 1-2. Jennifer Norris and Sinead McCarthy became the first Piltown girls to play inter county for Kilkenny when they were part of the 2009 Leinster Under-14 Championship squad. Jennifer Norris went on the win a Leinster Blitz medal with Kilkenny when they beat Kildare in Carlow Town in the 2009 Division 3 final. It was the first time Kilkenny had won a Leinster ladies football blitz title. The seeds of interest were beginning to spout.
In 2010, the interest in Ladies Gaelic Football skyrocketed. Owning and Templeorum National Schools combined to compete in the school’s championships. The year was memorable in that Piltown National School won their third County Title in a row (2nd Roinn A) and Owning/Templeorum won the Roinn D title at the first attempt. Two primary school’s county titles in the one year! An amazing and unprecedented feat.
The success needed leadership to make it a club. 2010 was the year, up stepped Sheila Norris (now the current Chairperson of Kilkenny County camogie Board) and she started work on the new club. She was joined by Siobhan McCarthy, Fran McGrath and a man from Wicklow, John Kavanagh who had Gaelic Football experience to become the club’s first coach.
FIRST OFFICERS AND MANAGEMENT TEAMS
Chairperson – Sheila Norris
Secretary – Siobhan McCarthy
Treasurer – Fran McGrath
PRO – Seamus Norris
Registrar – Siobhan McCarthy
Minor & Under-16 – John Kavanagh (Trainer), Sheila Norris, Fran McGrath
Under-14 – Siobhan McCarthy and Fran McGrath
On the 15th April 2010, another historic first took place in Thomastown when the Piltown club fielded their first ladies Gaelic football team in a match. The minor team took on the might of the Kilkenny County Under-14 team who were preparing for the Leinster Championship semi-final at that time. The Piltown team did well despite defeat as they started to come to grips with club football.
Team: Niamh Dermody, Claire Power, Antonia Power (Capt), Stephanie Falconer, Debbie Phelan, Sarah Murphy, Jennifer Norris, Edel Long, Lorraine Long, Joanne Bourke, Lisa Walsh, Siobhan Dermody, Sinead McCarthy, Jean Power, Jessica Poyntz
Subs: Sarah Walsh, Lisa McCarthy, Ciara O’Dwyer, Leanne O’Hara, Aisling Briscoe
Mentors: John Kavanagh and Sheila Norris
The club’s historic first win was not long coming and came in an International Under-16 Blitz on 10th July 2010 when they beat Roanmore 2-1 to 2-0 at W.I.T. in Carriganore. They also played their first international game in this blitz when they played New York.
Panel: Lorraine Long (Capt), Lisa Walsh, Katelynn Phelan, Stephanie Falconer, Sinead McCarthy, Debbie Phelan, Jennifer Norris, Laura Grace, Joanne Bourke, Caroline O’Shea. Claire Power, Shannon Keever, Sarah Walsh, Aisling Briscoe, Sarah McTiernan, Lisa Norris.
On the 31st July 2010, the Under-16’s beat Mullinavat in the Shield Final of the county 7-a-side blitz to record the club’s first ever county title. This took place at the O’Loughlin Gaels grounds.
Team: Stephanie Falconer (Capt), Jennifer Norris, Antonia Power, Debbie Phelan, Laura Grace, Claire Power, Katelynn Phelan.
This was followed up by victory in the Under-14 county blitz held in Freshford a few weeks later to cap a magnificent first year of the club.
Under-14 Squad: Claire Power (Capt), Stephanie Falconer, Jean Power, Leanne O’Hara, Sarah Murphy, Alice Talbot, Siobhan Dermody, Katelynn Phelan, Lisa McCarthy
The club has grown considerably since then, initially competing at Under-16 and Minor in Tipperary to now fielding teams in Kilkenny from Under-10 to Minor, with some girls playing adult on “permission to play” with other Kilkenny clubs. Over 60 girls from the club have played on Kilkenny inter-county teams at various levels. Numerous players have won All-Ireland and provincial medals with local secondary school, Scoil Mhuire, Carrick-on-Suir. In 2013, the club added the social outlet of Gaelic4Mothers & Others, which has boomed ever since and help provide great coaches for the younger girls.
A more detailed history of Piltown Ladies Gaelic Football club was written and produced electronically by club PRO Seamus Norris during the 2020 Coronavirus lockdown. Link is HERE
If you want to contact the club please email firstname.lastname@example.org