Keith Higgins during his time playing for Mayo.

Mayo representative on Hurling Action Plan workgroup

The GAA Strategic Plan – Áontas 2022-2026 commits to growing hurling as a key objective for the association.

The creation of a national Hurling Action Plan is designed to support this objective and expedite the growth and development of the sport across the country.

A national Hurling Action Plan workgroup has been established that features former Mayo great Keith Higgins, a star at both codes, as well as Colm Nolan (Kildare), Éibhear O’Dea (Limerick), Kieran Farmer (Fermanagh), Darragh Cox (Sligo), Joey Carton (Waterford), Kevin Kelly (Derry), Paddy Scales (Offaly) and Ryan Gaffney (Armagh – Camogie representative).

The group, chaired by Colm Nolan of Maynooth GAA, held their first meeting on Saturday week last.

Following on from the first meeting, a survey has been created to allow all those interested in the game to have a say on how hurling might be grown and developed. Responses will be factored into the key goal of agreeing a three-year action plan for the growth of the game.

This survey is open until Friday, December 15, at 5 p.m. and can be accessed here.

Welcoming the formation of the group, Uachtarán CLG Larry McCarthy stated: “The formation of this group has been in process since late summer and to ensure that the association can put in place a series of actions to develop the game of hurling, it is important that those involved are reflective of all the tiers of hurling.

“As an association, it is important that any actions coming out of this plan are realistic and I am delighted with the composition of the workgroup. All are passionate about the development of hurling, and I look forward to their recommendations.

“It is also important that we work alongside the Camogie Association, as we face similar challenges and can support each other in creating new opportunities to grow our games.”

The purpose of the Hurling Action Plan workgroup is to facilitate the formulation of a three-year action plan to sustain and grow the sport in line with the overarching vision and goals set out in the GAA Strategic Plan – Áontas 2022-2026 and in accordance with the following terms of reference: conduct a review of the findings and recommendations of previous plans, reports, action statements on the game over the past 15 years; conduct a review and analysis of current hurling activity at club, primary, post-primary, higher education and inter-county levels across all tiers of the game, but with a special focus on the game in Joe MacDonagh, Christy Ring, Nickey Rackard and Lory Meagher counties; review the current Hurley and Helmet Scheme; consult with key stakeholders as required; work with the Camogie Association to identify areas/projects of common interest and cooperation for inclusion in the plan; explore and identify ways in which the Camogie Association and the GAA can maximise the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage status for the games of camogie and hurling in supporting the implementation of the plan; and produce a plan for presentation to Central Council on its findings, recommendations, and a roadmap for implementation.