Derry GAA claim prestigious McNamee Award

GAA President John Horan (left) presents Club Derry's Paul Lupari and Derry County PRO Conor Nicholl with the McNamee Award in Dublin on Saturday evening.
GAA President John Horan (left) presents Club Derry's Paul Lupari and Derry County PRO Conor Nicholl with the McNamee Award in Dublin on Saturday evening.

Derry GAA scooped its first ever McNamee Award at a ceremony held in Croke Park on Saturday evening past.

The MacNamee Awards are presented annually in recognition of outstanding contributions made by individuals and Association units in the area of media and communications.

Derry's winning entry ‘The Men Who Won Maguire’ was inspired by the county's first All-Ireland senior football title in 1993, the 25th anniversary of which was celebrated with a special gala evening last November.

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 bite size 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 according to the county's PRO, Conor Nicholl - who alongside Club Derry chairman, Paul Lupari collected the away from GAA President John Horan - was a fitting tribute to an historic achievement:

"It was a real team effort from conception to design, planning and presentation of the material," explained the Derry PRO, " The level of engagement that the campaign garnered across all age groups was terrific.

"Derry supporters will always be grateful to the men of '93 and their level of engagement with this project and bringing their story to new generations was first class. None of it is possible without the players and I want to thank them for their assistance.

GAA President, John Horan, 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."