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24 Jan 2022

A pictorial journey of Carndonagh’s GAA Centenary 1921-2021

A pictorial journey of Carndonagh’s GAA Centenary 1921-2021

The 1984 Carndonagh team who were county hurling finalists

Centenary celebrations were curtailed for Carndonagh GAA Club due to covid restrictions. Elizabeth Doherty, the former club secretary, had hoped to complete a club history over the last year. Restrictions made that difficult, although Elizabeth still spent her time productively.

All too aware of the amount of history that is in the club and the number of club photos, her aim is to have it all in digital format and she has shared photographs and tales from the club’s early days.


Founder James Reid

The Cuchlainns hurling club 1922

The club was founded in 1921 by Drumkeen native James Reid. He was assisted by Michael F. O Doherty The club was hurling only and was named Cuchlainns. Football was introduced in 1938.

The 1932 hurling team

The Donegal hurling team of 1947 and 1948

In 1943 the club purchased their own grounds in the town. Tom Farren who was club stalwart for six decades sealed the purchase by paying the five pounds deposit himself.
The club had 11 players on the 1947 and 1948 county hurling team that won the Ulster Junior Hurling Championship.

The Donegal JFC winning team of 1950

1950 Junior football: front Row Charlie Doherty (U), Harry P Doherty, Denis McLaughlin (C), Kevin McArdle, John N. Doherty, John A. McLaughlin, Henry Doherty, Frankie Doherty (U), Jimmy Doherty (T), Back Row: Gerard Monagle, Billy Doherty (N), Jamsie Diver, F. Doherty, Enda Cunningham, Mick Leahy, John Doherty (N), H.Reynolds, and E.Doherty (J).

1953 the club competed in the senior football championship final and were defeated by one point by Gweedore . Score was 1-5 to 1-4.

The 1959 Junior Hurling Champions

The hurling team were beaten by Lifford in the junior hurling final of 1958 but won the final in 1959 defeating Lifford.

The U14 Inishowen School Boy Champions 1955

U14 Inishowen School Boy Champions 1955
Front Row: Jackie McGeoghan, Gabriel Duffy, Michael Robins, Michael Doherty (G), Paddy McClure (captain), P.J. Farry, Seamie Farry, Michael McClure, John Farren,

Back Row; Paddy Farren, Sean Farry, Brian Logue, Neil Doherty (F), Frankie McGuinness, Thomas Farren, Hugh Long and Paddy Harkin.

In the late sixties and seventies adult football was confined to players involved with colleges etc but underage was kept to the fore by the late Tom McBrearty a Kilcar native who was a teacher and later became principal in St Patrick's Boys' School. Tom is very much associated with the club being revived as an adult club in 1983.

The Carndonagh representation at the Feile na nGael in 1971

In 1971 the club were the Donegal representatives at the first Feile na nGeal competition in Thurles, Tipperary. Adults who accompanied the team were Tom Farren and Paddy Duffy. Team was J.K. Doherty, J.Merricks, K. Doherty, S. Bradley, J. McLaughlin, T. McElhinney, K. Lynn, D. Cullen, J. McDonough, S. Doherty (N), G. Davenport, T. Doherty, L. Monagle, L.Mannion, G. Doherty (G), J.J. Doherty, O. Donaghey, A. Doherty.

Tom McBrearty, Robert McCool, Anthony Burke, Paddy McClure, John D. McMenamin with J.P. Bradley being presented with football by Michael Gillispie.

Harry McDaid club person of the year in 1983 Michael Gillispie and Mr Vincent Lynn

The club was reestablished in 1983 with new dressing rooms erected for the GAA’s centenary year of 1984. The senior hurlers contested the senior final in 1984 being well defeated by Setanta. In 1985 luck was not on their side when they again reached the final to be defeated by a single point.

The 1984 Carndonagh team who were county hurling finalists

Camogie was very strong in the club and in 1988 the senior county final was won by the club defeating St Eunans in a low scoring game.

Team: Mary Doherty, Caroline McLaughlin, Maria Doherty, Monica Cavanagh, Denise McGonagle, Ann Marie McCarron, Lorraine Doherty, Elaine Harkin, Angela Kelly, Nuala Doherty, Yvonne Doherty, Mary Hirrell, Breda O Kane, Mary P. McLaughlin and Siobhan O Kane.

The 1997 Ladies team who won the Junior B

The 1997 Intermediate Football Championship winning panel

In the nineties the highlight was the winning of the Intermediate football championship in 1997. In 1996 the club reached the finals of both the Intermediate senior and reserve finals.

In 1995 the club won the junior hurling final. In 1997 the club were successful in all codes winning county finals in football, hurling, camogie and ladies football. The club won club of the year on the back of all these achievements.

Candonagh’s impressive home at Foden

On November 5th 2000 members took the decision to sell the five acres in town and move to a 12 acre site a mile from the town in Foden.

In 2008 the club won the junior football championship. Underage continued to flourish in all codes and the club are very much a one club long before it was referred to from Croke Park. Adult success returned for the hurlers in 2020 and 2021 has been very successful for the senior men.

Cathal Doherty scored 0-8 as Carndonagh won the 2020 Donegal JHC against Dungloe

Carndonagh were Division 4 champions of the All-County Football League in 2021

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