September 2005. Gerry McDermott wrote an excellent article in the monthly sports supplement of the Irish Independent about RISSC (London).
©The Irish Independent 2005
©The Irish Independent 2005
In 2005 Damian Byrne was digging through the archives and happened upon this article and photograph from the Irish Post in 1992, written by Kerryman extraordinaire and former member, Peter Carbery.
Club president Chris Hughton was among the large turn-out at last Friday’s AGM of the London RISSC branch, which was held at the Ebury Arms in south-west London’s Pimlico. MALCOLM McNALLY pictured Chris with members of the committee, above.
Not for the first time the hardworking and well-respected officers (that’s what it says here) were returned unopposed, while Sean O’Flaherty (vice-chairman), John Hyland(membership secretary) and Pat Meade (football team manager) stood down. Some of the members were co-opted onto the committee – Declan Halissey, Paul McDowell, and Aidan Slogan.
Chairman Tony Booth – spoke of what had been a successful year for the club, with trips having been organized to games in the USA, Poland, Turkey and darkest Manchester. The club had maintained a good relationship with the FAI in terms of ticket supply and, although membership had dropped from 686 to 512 inside 18 months, that all-time high figure had been the result of people joining up just to be sure of a ticket for the Republic’s European championship qualifier at Wembley in March of last year.
Treasurer Gerry O’Connell reported a deficit of £ 1,135 over the year, which was the result of offsetting the cost of trips and making donations to a number of charities, while the overall club reserves stand at a healthy £7,589. The club was able to keep the cost of annual membership at £7.50 for a third successive year.
After the aforementioned AGM Chris Hughton gave a very gracious (and funny) speech in which he thanked the club and its members for organizing and supporting his testimonial dinner earlier in the year. Chris went on to speak about the Republic scene in general, commenting on how different things are these days.
“When I first started playing for the Republic, I’d come back to Spurs after a game and all my English and Scottish clubmates would be calling the Irish players ‘Mickey Mouse”‘, he recalled. “It would be interesting to compare the value of the English and Irish teams these days, when you see the likes of Terry Phelan going for £2.5 million”.
“Does that mean they’re selling full backs by the inch?” enquired one Wicklow wag, to much amusement.
“Does that mean you’ve seen me in the shower?” was the Brentford man’s quick response, before a third voice at the back of the room cut through the laughter to ask: “Wasn’t it a free transfer West Ham gave you, Chris’?”
He didn’t exactly go red, but it was mighty close.
© The Irish Post 1992