How far are you willing to go for your county?

Mayo's call

The debate and the response generated from my recent guest post here on the Mayo GAA Blog has been phenomenal. Apart from the quality of the posters and their undoubted passion for their county, I have also been inundated with emails and phone calls. The result of that response, that undoubted passion, the crying need for an articulated measurement of the County Board’s recent actions has led me to putting a detailed survey together. Information is critical in assessing any situation and never was there a greater need to carry out such an assessment of how the Mayo supporters feel about a whole load of issues relating to our County Board.

The purpose of this survey is to gauge the feelings, measure the emotions and establish the opinions of the ordinary supporter whose voice appears to be lost in the recent furore over the mishandling of the managerial process. Once the survey is completed and analysed, perhaps we will be better informed as what action the supporters should take. The voice of the paying punter is an important voice but many err by ignoring it.

I am grateful to Willie Joe for agreeing to launch this survey and for also facilitating the debate over the last week.

So the survey is now live, please promote and discuss it with friends and family and use your undoubted passion and intelligence to complete it.

Its findings could prove crucial in charting a way forward for Mayo GAA.

To take the survey, please click here.

33 thoughts on “How far are you willing to go for your county?

  1. I totally forgot to put in my survey:

    I think a massive failing of the GAA as a whole is the huge lack of opportunity for people who aren’t good at GAA sports to play same. For soccer, it’s great, 5 a side always going on, competitions and whatnot. Tag rugby, basketball, raquetball, nadminton can all be played casually. Heck, even tag American Football. But nothing similar for GAA. That might be something to look at.

  2. In discussion with a business colleague today we agreed that in business the cream always seems to rise to the top. All of the CEOs we knew were always substantial, creative and fast thinking. It seems that in politics and in the GAA this is not the case. Now it is a voluntary organisation so maybe thats just the way it is. Is it?

  3. Mayo Mark, what a simple yet absolutely brilliant idea. I have often longed to get out and play a game again, but fitness would definitely not allow it! Casual GAA would be brilliant, it would bring no end of fun for mates to play each other. It would be like being kids again. When I was young we had two trees in the middle of the estate on the green that worked just perfect for shooting goals and points and practicing frees. You would be playing GAA chasing and tackling around cars, in gardens & up and down kerbs, it was great craic and honestly I think it benefited my shooting as a grew older.

  4. PJ we missed a wonderful opportunity 3/4 years when the County Board rejected the Strategic plan.The time is right again to implement the plan and get a modern professional county board set up that will help deliver sucess for Mayo at all levels. I thank for your excellent contribution to help plan a way forward for Mayo GAA.Jimmy Walsh

  5. This survey is naive in the extreme as well as the questions being very loaded. Croke park would not countenance any organization outside the gaa interfering. With the running of the county board. These people are easy enough to remove by attending club AGM s and voting. But I suspect that may a step to far. For the keyboard warriors. Unless people are willing to put in as much time and effort as the current officers any attempt is bound to fail

  6. John – I’ve deleted that last comment from you and when you take the time to think about what you said in it, you’ll know why I did. Others have rights to make comments on here too, in case that point escaped you.

  7. GAA is a democratic organisation with the grassroots and clubs as the first step on the democratic ladder. If change is to come about it needs to come about through the clubs. The problem is that very few even within clubs have any interest in taking on officer jobs or even attending meetings. I am a member of a club outside the county and if 10 people turned up at meeting it would be considered cause for celebration. Players rarely if ever attend meetings. The guys who do attend meetings are the ones who fund raise mark the pitches cut the grass and keep the club ticking over. They tend to be GAA to the bone, a little conservative and happy enough with the status quo. This has obvious knock on effects for the county boards which are populated with similar hard working but like minded people. We may not like this but are we prepared to do anything about it. Are we willing to do all this menial thankless work or do we just wish everything to change because we reckon our Co Board is useless. I cant answer this question. I am sickened by the way our Co Board handled the New Manager Affair but does that give me the right to call for the removal of men who dedicated their whole lives to the GAA when I have no idea what the alternative should be. Should we destroy the democracy of the organisation with a popular uprising on social media. I will have to think more about this before I complete the survey.

  8. Mayo mark

    The neamh mearnog club in Dublin had a gent in their midst, mick kissane, he won an allireland in 1963 and as recently as 2001 was out playing “social football ” twice a week at the club grounds which would embarras s man united or Chelsea. It was 2 or 3 touch and you pass or shoot. Great crack, I got to play with some great lads that had played in allirelands and others that couldn’t hit a cow barn with a kick but it was a great workout and great camaraderie. There were days when 30 would show up and other days when 16 would and the ages were from 14 to 70, nobody got hit or hurt and it kept the old heads and bodies vital.
    Current Dublin senior players of the day would even show up for it sometimes, what I wouldn’t give for it today when I’m on the football scrap heap and stuck on a thread mill or gym

    If you live in Dublin it’s worth looking up to see if they’re still at it.

  9. Mayo mark…saw sonething like that idea on thank GAA it’s Friday program..think it’s called Cul and they have a league in the Louth Meath area and play in gormanstown college gym if I recall correctly.
    Re the survey above, agree with the sentiment but totally biased and full of loaded questions.

  10. I just checked neamh mearnog website, it’s still on. Wednesdays and Saturdays. Every club should have it.
    Better than any tablets or medicine.

  11. There is a competition for active footballers its called All-Ireland O-40’s; what are the GAA going to promote it? Nothing, but are spending significant amount of their time trying to ban it. In fact they have, they are not allowed play on Gaa pitches, are not covered by GAA insurance. The players have to pay for their own insurance and play on community pitches only. Mayo played Tyrone in Swinford Community pitch last Saturday, the standard of football was excellent, as good as some senior club matches. Ex county players on show were Pat Fallon, Anthony McGarry, Kenneth Mortimor, Gary Ruane, all still in great shape. The Mayo county board have done its best to get this competition scrapped.

  12. In relation to PJ’s vision of the future, I leave you with a famous statement from JFK;

    ‘There are those who look at things the way they are and ask why?… I dream of things that never were, and ask why not?’

  13. Spot on Gale. This blog was absolutely full of comments like McNicholas should resign, the structure is a mess, look at Fitzmaurice stepping away from the underage set up due to being disillusioned, two co board officers resigning their posts when it should be others etc.

    Finally someone like PJ has taken the reins and gone out if his way to do something productive. It’s time to get behind this and support the push for Liam Horan’s plan to be installed. Mayo GAA is in a mess…whether their sentiments are right or not is entirely irrelevant. They have failed. It’s that simple and they treated McStay absolutely dreadfully, no issue of an apology and the topped off with a round of applause. It’s stomach turning.

    Time to get behind PJ. Stop doubting and stop sitting on the fence. Supporters can move Mayo forward or we can sit idly by. You choose.

    Up Mayo.

  14. Seriously Gale? On what grounds?

    For what its worth, I think Mark’s idea is an excellent one – maybe not within the remit of this survey with its single-minded purpose but with the longer-term aim of promoting the game and making it more inclusive.

    Indeed, the speed and scorn with which it was dismissed above would almost remind you of the current resistance to new ideas that exists within the current administration. The very resistance we’re trying so hard to eradicate by partaking in this survey.

  15. The lack of a box to tick on the “Other” option in Q 44 seems to prevent me from completing the survey even though I have a comment in the comment box. Anybody else have this problem?

  16. This ‘survey’ idea is brilliant & an excellent riposte to those who prefer closed shops & secrecy. Great credit is due to PJ for initiating this & to WJ for accommodating it here on the blog. The survey is open to everyone no matter which side of the fence you sit on.
    There is also nothing to prevent anyone from conducting their own counter survey.
    For me this is a ‘no brainer’ & boils down to transparent funding so that all of our teams going forward have proper & transparent backing. It seems to me that the ability of this CB to fundraise is now virtually shot whereas a new regime could raise maybe 5-10 times more for the cause. Always thought the Liam Horan Plan was an excellent one & it is now well past time for it to get it’s day in the sun. Time for Mayo folk to embrace change & come into the modern era.

  17. PJ
    I really admire your passion for Mayo football and your courage for trying to improve how we do things. I believe a shake up is needed but I am doubtful about this survey. I fear it will be the subject of ridicule.

  18. There was a bit of negativity on my wall last night when i put the link up , i was surprised tbh but then again this is Ireland and we do have the most amazing attitude to gombeenism , sure we love it . If the powers that be are making a hames of it let it be our govt or CB we will shout from the high stool till our veins pop out of our neck , but in the cold light of day ” sure thats the way it is and always will be” .

  19. @ sin a bhfuil, i was responding positively to Mayo Marks suggestion he left out of his survey. Your comment “put up or shut up enter the survey” is a bit pointless. the fact is I’ve already done so, just because i’m not shouting it from the rooftops… Up Mayo

  20. Good man Trev, we might get something going for it some day!!

    Thanks also Alf and Dave! I had a look at that website Dave, looks great, I might even try that out when I’m in Dublin in a couple of weeks!

  21. Responded to the survey also, as well as directly contacting PJ and offering support. I do take the point regarding questions 43 & 44, however i just made my comments in the box provided to clarify things.
    As I have said previously, this is not personal and it is not because we lost 2 All Irelands either. It is because the Strategic Plan is the right thing to do and the current county board are too slow to react, too “closed shop” and not transparent. The clubs have a lot to answer for also.

  22. Mark, I think its a great idea to try and get something going. Even something like 7 a side games played on astroturf or something along those lines.

    I remember there being some Red Bull competition run by Bernard Brogan last year that was 5 or 7 a side and played in Dublin

  23. Pat Kearns says:

    October 6, 2014 at 11:01 pm

    PJ are your survey comments public and for all to see?

    NOT CURRENTLY BUT COULD DO IN THE FUTURE IF I FELT THE COMMENTS COULD ADD A POSITIVE CONTRIBUTION TO THE DEBATE IN RELATION TO REFORMING THE COUNTY BOARD
    AndyD says:

    October 7, 2014 at 3:09 am

    The lack of a box to tick on the “Other” option in Q 44 seems to prevent me from completing the survey even though I have a comment in the comment box. Anybody else have this problem?

    NOW UPDATED TO PROVIDE THE “OTHER” OPTION

  24. Trevor. I was not commenting about you or any other specific poster. I was commenting in general. As a 50 something year old who still plays the odd game of soccer I think Mark’s idea is great. I think everyone should enter the survey. I have and I found some of the questions very uncomfortable but I answered them none the less. Takes a lot for some people to step out from what is familiar or to speak ill of people they may meet regularly. Unfortunately sometimes it is all one can do when nothing else works.

  25. In response to Trevor Naughton and in total agreement but highly influenced by Monty Python – You were lucky to have two trees!
    Growing up on the edge of of North Mayo we had a stiff wind and usually a hill to content with as we attempted to emulate our GAA hereos, but the sentiment remains: Recreational GAA could be the conduit by which we attract more people back to the Club scene and make it a more vibrant part of the social fabric and affect change at both club and County level. Its a brilliant idea and would keep many an ex player involved in the club. At the moment there are very few roles for an ex player: You are expected to join the executive or take up a coaching role or limp off into the sunset. A recreational dimension is a great idea.

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