In 1980 Rosemary Kent introduced hockey into Renmore Community. At that time Brenda Tighe was coaching Galway Hockey Club Junior. Paul Sandys approached Brenda to help out in Renmore, knowing she’d be glad to because of her love of hockey. In those days hockey was played on a grass pitch beside the school. About twenty girls attended but unfortunately due to the bad weather many practices had to be cancelled. Various venues were tried, the pitch in Woodlands was used for a while but again the weather was a problem.
The only answer was indoor. Brenda approached the Corporation for the use of the Sports Centre, but was turned down on the grounds that sticks would damage the floor. The following year the corporation were approached again by Brenda promising to cover the heads of the sticks with socks to protect the floor. They finally agreed and from then on there was no looking back. With the club coaching of an hour a week, the numbers grew and the club went from strength to strength. With the help of Marian Heaney, Berni Nolan and Nora Flynn, the club flourished and hockey was being offered for three hours a week.
At first only girls came but Brenda was approached by some boys and thought, “Why not?” To date over 500 children have learned the basic skills of hockey. The 1995/96 season had over 90 children playing with the club. Brenda began a league this year for the first and second years in Second level schools around the city. The winners, Salerno were presented with a shield by Anna and Larry Connolly in honour of the late Connor Connolly who passed away early that year and who played for the club.
Brenda continued to run the club but had it in her mind to wind up the club around 2005/06 as she found that so many children were coming to the hockey sessions but so many were not very interested in playing . At this stage the club had an adult team which comprised of many of Brenda’s friends who had played for Corrib Hockey club (but this club had folded) and girls who had stayed on playing with the club as they got older.
At this point they decided not to continue with the juvenile hockey and Brenda agreed to stay on until someone else took over. Many of the boys at this stage were playing with Galway men. Both Fergal Keaveney and Mike Tighe went on to play for Munster at U18 level. Also many Renmore girls went on to play for Connacht at different levels.
Yvette Connolly and Olivia Owens and others took over the running of the club and since then it has gone from strength to strength. In 2009 Renmore made its first breakthrough, winning the Connacht Junior Cup and League. They retained the Cup for the 2010 competition. Renmore has added to the their trophies over the years but are now looking at the long term strategy of the club. This has brought us to present day and we are now delighted to announce we are starting a juvenile section.
Brenda Tighe started Renmore Hockey Club because there was so little sport for girls at the time and she wanted to pass on to as many children as possible a love and a knowledge of a sport that she had got so much from. To be able to go anywhere in the world and have the confidence to join a hockey club is one of the easiest ways of fitting in to your new surroundings and making friends. The past and future players of Renmore hockey club owe so much to Brenda and all who helped on the early days. Their dedication, patience and love of the game allowed so many the opportunity to play hockey in Renmore and throughout Galway.