Burns Bows Out at ICA AGM

For the second year running the Irish Curling Association held a virtual Annual General Meeting. In addition to constitutional change and committee elections, the meeting saw the departure from the committee of John Burns – a founder member, past president and ICA titan.

The meeting began with ICA President Eoin McCrossan reflecting on those who the association lost in the previous year as well as those lost to the pandemic. He paid particular tribute to past President and “latter-day Boudica in emerald green”, Fiona Turnbull.

Eoin took the opportunity, through his President’s report, to update the membership on the great work done by the committee throughout the year behind the scenes. He paid tribute to all committee members hard work but in particular departing member, Arran Cameron. Despite a lack of on-ice events, the committee had the time and space to progress with the Association’s development plan with particular progress seen in improved governance and digital offerings to members. He reported a rise in membership of more than 10% and set out six key targets for next season:

  • Hosting Member events including training and social events
  • Redesigning the ICA website
  • Contributing to the Irish Winter Sports Strategy launch
  • Assisting teams to realise their competitive ambitions
  • Utilising a greater percentage of DAP funding
  • Continuing to improve governance practices

Finally, he was able to share a provisional calendar for next season:

26th SeptemberOpening Training DayGreenacres
26th SeptemberOpening BonspielGreenacres
31st October
7th November
Fyfe TrophyGreenacres
December 2021Winter BonspielStirling
TBCArdrossan CastleGreenacres
January 2021 (if required)Men/Women PlaydownDumfries
January 2021 (if required)Senior PlaydownDumfries
28th-30th JanuaryFour NationsAyr
February 2021Spring BonspielMurrayfield
26th-27th FebruaryStranraer WeekendStranraer
12th-13th MarchMixed PlaydownDumfries
March 2021Closing BonspielHamilton

All seven constitutional changes were approved by the membership which gave clarity to membership categories, introduced greater flexibility for a digital committee working and enshrined updated voting practices for office bearers and the business of future AGMs.

Bill Gray and David Whyte were re-elected as Secretary and Treasurer. Craig Whyte and Christine Furey were re-elected onto the committee after serving three-year terms as ordinary members and Steve Callan re-joined the committee following a few years away. Finally, Carolyn Hibbard and Eoin McCrossan were elected as WCF representatives, meaning that John Burns stepped down from the committee after a tenure approaching 30 years. In the meeting, President Eoin paid tribute to him:

John has worked tirelessly for well over 25 years to advance the cause of Irish Curling and I feel slightly overwhelmed with the task of paying tribute to such a titan of the ICA. John was a founder member, past president and past secretary. John established our relationships with many organisations in Ireland including the OFI and has advocated the cause of Ice in Ireland and shown incredible tenacity in the face of many disappointments. Thank you John on behalf of everyone in the association”.

John remains a valued member, and no doubt a source of support and knowledge when needed.

The meeting concluded with a vote of thanks to the chair and just in time for the secretary to watch the end of the second test of the Lions tour of South Africa!

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