'Great excitement' as past pupils back at Cork school 30 years after All-Ireland double

'Great excitement' as past pupils back at Cork school 30 years after All-Ireland double

Ali Nolan and Eoin Considine, both 6th class, with the Sam Maguire Cup.

PAST pupils and sporting icons Teddy McCarthy and John Considine visited Brooklodge National School in celebration of 30 years since Cork’s double All-Ireland win.

Staff and pupils at the national school, “steeped in GAA,” were delighted to welcome back the past pupils to celebrate the anniversary of Cork’s legendary double, along with both the Sam Maguire and Liam MacCarthy cups.

 Teddy McCarthy and John Considine with Sean Sheehan and Aoife McCarthy, both 6th class.
Teddy McCarthy and John Considine with Sean Sheehan and Aoife McCarthy, both 6th class.

The exciting visit was held in aid of Marymount and allowed the entire school to get involved in Go Red for Cork.

Brooklodge was just one of many schools around the city and county that took the opportunity to combine the anniversary celebrations with fundraising for the much-loved local charity.

Previously, the school’s annual coffee morning would raise between €600 and €800 for Marymount, but this year, the 30-year anniversary of Cork’s double All-Ireland win, fund-raising was taken up a notch.

 Junior and Senior Infants.
Junior and Senior Infants.

“When we heard that the GAA were doing the Red Day for the hurling and football double 30 years ago, we said ‘we are definitely on board’ and it just created a wonderful, wonderful atmosphere,” said principal Ursula Hedderman.

“There’s been such little opportunity for that type of whole-school excitement with the restrictions.

 Junior and Senior Infants.
Junior and Senior Infants.

“All our classes have been organised into teams of four and then within those teams, each class is in a bubble and then within that there are pods, so it’s very rare since we came back to school that we can get to see everybody.”

 Arthur Craise, 5th class.
Arthur Craise, 5th class.

The pupils ditched their uniforms for the day and decorated their classrooms as part of the celebrations, with donations from parents going to Marymount. “We’re trying to do what we’ve always done but in a different way,” Ms Hedderman said.

With the help of good weather, the entire school community was able to come together, while adhering to social distancing for the first time since the outbreak of Covid-19.

 Brooklyn Hoare, 2nd class.
Brooklyn Hoare, 2nd class.

Kitted out in their best red clothes and accessories, the pupils had the opportunity to see the sporting legends, along with their winning cups, from both All-Ireland finals.

“It was great excitement,” Ms Hedderman said. “Even to watch the kids come into school early this morning, there was such a skip in their step coming down the path — even for the ‘smallies’, who wouldn’t have a clue why they are wearing red — but they were just swept up in the excitement of it all .

Eimear Greene, Junior Infants.Picture: Jim Coughlan.

 Eimear Greene, Junior Infants.
Eimear Greene, Junior Infants.

Kai Fitzpatrick, Junior Infants.Picture: Jim Coughlan.

"One of the boys in the older classes would have classed Teddy McCarthy as one of our local heroes, so there’s quite a number of children for who it was a huge deal, and particularly those who play hurling or football.”

Despite having to pare back other fundraising opportunities this year, the special day has allowed Brooklodge National School to meet its usual fundraising targets for Marymount.

 Brooke Delaney, 1st class, with the Sam Maguire Cup.
Brooke Delaney, 1st class, with the Sam Maguire Cup.

“I would like to thank all of our parents who donated. We haven’t been able to total it up yet but I know that they were very generous and we will be delighted to make the donation to Marymount now in the next few days,” said Ms Hedderman

“Marymount is a place that has touched everybody’s lives over the years, and I think that they are amazing, and the support they provide for families and patients is just fantastic.”

 Zara Morey, 2nd class, with the Liam McCarthy Cup.
Zara Morey, 2nd class, with the Liam McCarthy Cup.

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