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Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus

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The Sandman 08 Jul 10 - 12:43 PM
GUEST,iwerzon 08 Jul 10 - 12:27 PM
The Sandman 08 Jul 10 - 10:34 AM
knight_high 03 May 10 - 01:27 PM
GUEST,GUEST, Musician 03 May 10 - 08:34 AM
The Sandman 30 Apr 10 - 07:10 AM
GUEST,Learaí na Láibe 29 Apr 10 - 05:08 PM
GUEST,Ceoltóirí Chluain Tarbh 29 Apr 10 - 04:27 PM
GUEST,Cluain Tarbh 11 Nov 09 - 06:26 PM
GUEST,Joxer 04 Nov 09 - 05:01 AM
The Sandman 10 Oct 09 - 11:39 AM
GUEST,Frank F. 27 Apr 09 - 12:08 PM
GUEST,Cathal 24 Apr 09 - 04:38 AM
GUEST,Rory 22 Apr 09 - 04:59 AM
GUEST,Cathal 21 Apr 09 - 07:50 AM
knight_high 22 Feb 09 - 07:04 PM
GUEST,Eileen 19 Feb 09 - 05:20 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 18 Feb 09 - 09:05 AM
caitlin rua 18 Feb 09 - 07:16 AM
GUEST,Peter Laban 18 Feb 09 - 07:11 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 15 Feb 09 - 03:52 AM
The Sandman 13 Feb 09 - 01:25 PM
GUEST,Eileen O'Connor 13 Feb 09 - 08:19 AM
GUEST,Danno 11 Feb 09 - 06:30 AM
knight_high 10 Feb 09 - 09:44 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 04 Feb 09 - 10:36 AM
GUEST,Northsider 04 Feb 09 - 10:03 AM
Bonnie Shaljean 04 Feb 09 - 07:28 AM
GUEST,Northsider 04 Feb 09 - 05:07 AM
Barry Finn 02 Feb 09 - 05:02 PM
GUEST,Teresa 02 Feb 09 - 04:15 AM
GUEST,teresa 30 Jan 09 - 08:19 PM
Declan 30 Jan 09 - 02:50 PM
GUEST,Frank 30 Jan 09 - 02:39 PM
GUEST,Northsider 30 Jan 09 - 01:04 PM
caitlin rua 30 Jan 09 - 07:10 AM
GUEST,Emmo 30 Jan 09 - 05:33 AM
caitlin rua 30 Jan 09 - 05:28 AM
Jim Carroll 30 Jan 09 - 04:11 AM
GUEST,J.J. 26 Jan 09 - 10:34 AM
GUEST,Eileen O'Connor 26 Jan 09 - 07:18 AM
caitlin rua 23 Jan 09 - 08:24 AM
GUEST,Emmo 23 Jan 09 - 08:15 AM
caitlin rua 23 Jan 09 - 08:04 AM
GUEST,Emmo 23 Jan 09 - 05:57 AM
GUEST,PL 20 Jan 09 - 05:43 PM
GUEST,Eileen O'Connor 14 Jan 09 - 04:25 AM
GUEST 06 Jan 09 - 10:59 AM
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GUEST 01 Jan 09 - 09:24 PM
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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: The Sandman
Date: 08 Jul 10 - 12:43 PM

my apologies, I thought it would interest others,
I agree, I should have put it in quotes, and credited you


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,iwerzon
Date: 08 Jul 10 - 12:27 PM

It's very good of GSS to quote my entire message on The Session site as if it were his own original posting! :)


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: The Sandman
Date: 08 Jul 10 - 10:34 AM

Labhrás O Murchú resigns over Gay marriage scandal!

Actually, Labhrás O Murchú CCÉ Director for life has resigned (pushed?) from the Fianna Fail parliamentary party (Irish Conservative Party) because he is opposed to the new laws protecting same sex Civil partnerships in Ireland .

He asys it undermines the 'traditional marriage', thats the 'holy' one between a man and woman I assume - so much for separation of church and State.

Does this prove the CCÉ head is a dinosaur, stuck in 1950's rural, Catholic Ireland? Should the Gay Pride organisations sponsor a stage in Cavan this August?

Is this the begining of the end of Larry Murphy? Remember his expenses scandal a few weeks ago!


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: knight_high
Date: 03 May 10 - 01:27 PM

Well said Guest Musician. And I guess that is the kernel of the problem. Labhras is a politician and acting like one. Grace and favour. Forget about democracy. Most decent people in Comhaltas are now resigned to having Labhras there for life and can now only think to a future when he will not be there. A bit like waiting for the dawn.
Its a joke to pretend that the Ard Comhairle took the decision to dissolve the Clontarf branch. They simply rubber stamped the wish of Labhras.
Now here would be a truly courageous move. That one or two of the Ard Comhairle tell us the real story


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,GUEST, Musician
Date: 03 May 10 - 08:34 AM

We all know that will never happen. Labhras is too proud and power driven, a typical politician.

What happened to it being about the music?

At the end of the day, everything is (meant to be) about the music and not who has more power.

Ceoltóirí Chluain Tarbh should be recognised as a club of talented musicians, not a dissolved branch of Comhaltas. They served many years as CCE Chluain Tarbh with pride and dignity and were treated with respect in a mannerly fashion. Their musicianship has not changed, nor their enthusiasm regarding the music. Let them enjoy doing what they love most in peace, playing music!

Ceoltóirí Chluain Tarbh, I support you and your music. Keep the tradition alive and well. Let your music live on for generations as it has in the past. Your talent outshines the many cracks Comhaltas have attempted to damage you with. Is é an ceol an rud is tábhachtach! Hup!


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: The Sandman
Date: 30 Apr 10 - 07:10 AM

O Murchu should resign


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Learaí na Láibe
Date: 29 Apr 10 - 05:08 PM

Im sure most branches do fully support the Ardchomhairle.

They could be summarily dissolved on some trumped up charge if they in any way upset the ruling politburo.

Uno Duce, Una Voce.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Ceoltóirí Chluain Tarbh
Date: 29 Apr 10 - 04:27 PM

Many have been asking about the status of the dispute between Comhaltas and the dissolved Clontarf branch. In exasperation at the failure of Comhaltas to engage in meaningful dialogue to find a resolution to the dispute the ex-Clontarf branch have issued a public statement. This sets out the current stateof play. It has been sent to all branches of Comhaltas.

The following is the statement issued.

Comhaltas is still doing everything it can to prevent discussions taking place to resolve the dispute with the dissolved Clontarf branch. Comhaltas will not engage with Clontarf and won't allow the issues that caused the dispute to be addressed.

Last year Comhaltas and Clontarf were both asked by the team undertaking the official review commissioned by the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (DCRGA) to enter into mediation. Clontarf said yes. Comhaltas said no, wrongly insisting their Bunreacht would not allow it. Even Minister Eamonn O Cuiv, when publishing the report last September, called for "a meaningful engagement in relation to the issues…"   

It is clear Comhaltas HQ doesn't want to engage because they now can't explain why they summarily dissolved Cluain Tarbh Comhaltas, a hard working branch with nearly 50 years service and over 400 members, without any right of reply or appeal. The official DCRGA report confirmed that the Clasac project, developed by Clontarf, was properly managed and delivered in line with budget projections and that other reasons advanced by Comhaltas at the time for dissolving the branch were totally unfounded.

Clontarf would like to thank everyone, including the huge number of traditional musicians, politicians, people in the local community and so many Comhaltas members and branches for supporting us by not attending the Clasac centre.

We ask you to continue to support justice for Clontarf by not visiting Clasac until the dispute is resolved.

The manner of, and the spurious reasons for, the dissolution of Clontarf should be of concern to everyone in Comhaltas. The lessons from the way Clontarf and its members were treated are clear. It means that every member is vulnerable in an environment where levelling of unfounded allegations and malicious abuse targeted at individual members is sanctioned at the top.

It represents a complete failure of proper governance and a rejection of the most basic standards of fairness by the Ardchomhairle (governing body), the very people charged with protecting the Bunreacht and members rights. The leadership of Comhaltas has continued its campaign against Clontarf even after the branch's unfair dissolution leaving us with no other conclusion but that it is intent on preventing facts emerging that raise very serious questions about the Ardchomhairle's conduct and that of the Ardstiúrthóir.

Comhaltas claims that a motion adopted "unanimously" at the annual congress in May 2008 means that branches supported the actions taken against Clontarf. It is clear from the many branches in contact with Clontarf that such a motion was unknown to many of the delegates at the time, suggesting the motion was taken when very few were present. It is inconceivable that genuine branch delegates who have the interests of the organisation and members at heart can be content to be used in this manner to validate the improper actions of the leadership of Comhaltas.

The way Comhaltas dealt with Clontarf and the failure of governance must also be pursued by the Minister for Arts and Minister for Community, Equality and the Gaeltacht. They provided over €9m in public funding to develop Clasac, which now stands virtually idle, and also contribute substantial annual funding to the running costs of the centre. Ministers have put their trust in Comhaltas, a national body that has as one of its aims to represent what should be good about Irish society and local communities.

Good governance, as practiced by many other national sporting and cultural bodies, must ensure at the very least that members' grievances must be addressed fairly and openly. The members of these organisations demand nothing less from their leadership and governing bodies. It's time that these same standards were demanded of, and delivered by, the leadership of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann.


Issued by Ceoltóirí Chluain Tarbh – 26 April 2010


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Cluain Tarbh
Date: 11 Nov 09 - 06:26 PM

The following is the response of Ceoltóirí Chluain Tarbh to the funding review by the Department of Community Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs of the development programme of Comhaltas. A copy of this has been sent to each member of the Ardcomhairle of Comhaltas.

On 8 September the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs published its review of the Comhaltas development programme. The report confirms that the Clasac project, developed by the dissolved Clontarf branch, was properly managed and delivered in line with budget projections. The official report serves to expose Comhaltas' mischievous claims that the project was mishandled and had run significantly over cost. It also confirms that Clontarf had secured the necessary loans to complete the project, one of the many facts denied by Comhaltas. In short, the reasons advanced by Comhaltas for dissolving the branch were totally unfounded. Despite this, the Ardchomhairle (governing body) has continued its campaign of demonising Clontarf to prevent facts emerging that raise very serious questions about the conduct of those involved and the role of the Ardchomhairle itself.

Comhaltas claims wide support across the organisation for dissolving Clontarf. We don't believe this is true. A number of parties have been in touch with us recently saying Comhaltas has informed them that the dispute has been settled and has encouraged them to utilise the Clasac centre, another ploy to avoid addressing our case and to pretend that all is well. Clontarf has the support of all local politicians as well as all prominent traditional music press commentators and most followers of traditional music.
We ask everyone, including Comhaltas members everywhere, not to support the Clasac centre until the dispute is resolved. By not attending the centre you prevent Comhaltas from claiming wide support for their shameful treatment of Clontarf and the take over of the centre we created.

Report advises Comhaltas to resolve the dispute in its own interest
The official report found that "it would be in the best interests of the Comhaltas development programme that the members of the dissolved Clontarf branch were actively involved in the usage and development of the Clasac centre". However, since its publication Comhaltas has continued to attack Clontarf through press release, on national radio and in Treoir. Claims by Comhaltas that the report vindicates their actions in relation to Clontarf are very clearly at variance with report itself. An article in the Irish Times on 3 October 2009, for example, noted "the substance of the report is at variance with Comhaltas HQ's response". The official report concluded "the current impasse is not only damaging to Comhaltas but has implications for the continued success of the Clasac centre".
No fair-minded person can have anything to fear from an independent mediator particularly given the integrity and community spirit that is at the core of the Comhaltas ideal.

The report recommends appointing an independent person to help resolve the dispute. It notes that the members of the dissolved Clontarf branch are willing to engage in mediation but that Comhaltas is not, citing constraints in its constitution. The Comhaltas constitution contains no such constraint, but to date Comhaltas has resisted all attempts at resolution, including rejecting requests for meetings and conciliation and refusing to respond to our formal appeal against dissolution, our right under the Comhaltas constitution and natural justice.

Sen. O Murchú told Pat Kenny on RTE radio last February that the only reason Clontarf branch was dissolved related to a VAT refund. The official review examined the arguments of both sides and concluded that the VAT refund application "was made in good faith"…, and "…the fact that the difficulties associated with obtaining the refund were identified in such a timely manner, were addressed by both sides and a refund made, indicates that there is no outstanding VAT issue in respect of Clasac at this stage which should concern the Department."
Since Comhaltas said the VAT refund is the only reason Clontarf branch was dissolved, and as the official report not only doesn't apportion blame but concludes both parties resolved the matter satisfactorily, then why was the branch dissolved and why is Comhaltas still attacking Clontarf?

Comhaltas continues to deny its key role in preparing the VAT refund claim, yet documentary evidence supports Clontarf's position. Clontarf's solicitor set out the full facts on VAT in a letter to Comhaltas on 31 March 2009 - see the response by Clontarf to Sen O Murchú's assertions on the Pat Kenny Radio Show

Key facts about the refund include:
- Sen. O Murchú requested Clontarf to make a VAT refund claim.
- Comhaltas HQ staff and auditor worked with Clontarf in preparing and lodging the application.
- Clontarf wrote to Sen. O Murchú setting out details of the claim at the time the application was made.
- The Revenue confirmed in writing that Clontarf properly managed the VAT refund.
- In April 2008 the Sen. O Murchú told the Department of Arts in writing that there was not, at any stage, a misappropriation of funds on the part of Clontarf.

In reality, the VAT issue is a red herring used by Comhaltas as just another device to draw attention from their own improper conduct and shameful treatment of Clontarf members.

The 400 members (including over 200 young people) of Clontarf were deprived of Comhaltas membership without any right of appeal and are still being subjected to malicious accusations for the "crime" of having the vision and drive to develop Clasac for no personal benefit. This must surely represent a very low ebb in the history of Comhaltas, and the Ardchomhairle is responsible for this shameful situation. Their failure to pursue the truth of what happened and to strive for an equitable solution represents a complete failure of governance and fair play in the organisation. Comhaltas members depend on the vigilance, integrity and courage of Ardchomhairle members to protect them and the constitution, and that trust must be honoured.

The Ardchomhairle must have the courage to ask:
1) Is justice done by not hearing the appeal?
2) Was the Ardchomhairle fully and fairly briefed on the facts and the appeal, and if not why not?
3) Was a direction given to Clontarf by Comhaltas trustees that would have led to an illegal action?
4) If all documentary evidence at the time showed otherwise, why did Comhaltas management / Standing Committee wrongly allege project mismanagement and VAT impropriety?
5) Is there any conflict of interest preventing the facts emerging and the dispute being resolved?
6)As Clontarf has been shown to have acted properly in the Clasac project shouldn't the project now be restored to them?

Issued by Ceoltóirí Chluain Tarbh – 1 November 2009


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Joxer
Date: 04 Nov 09 - 05:01 AM

From the Irish Times Saturday October 3rd:

"COMHALTAS CEOLTÓIRÍ Éireann has come under the spotlight of the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs in a report titled Funding Review of the Development Programme of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann . The report, writes Siobhán Long , examines the State's funding of the Comhaltas development programme between 2005 and 2009.

Controversy surrounded the decision taken by the Comhaltas ardchomhairle in February 2008 to expel its 400-strong Clontarf branch, known as Craobh Cluain Tarbh, alleging irregularities in relation to a VAT refund in the period when the Clontarf branch was managing the building of the flagship Clasac traditional arts centre on Alfie Byrne Road. Clasac includes a 250-seat auditorium, a recording studio, an archive/library, an intimate performance space and two bars. Comhaltas also alleged that the local branch had amassed a €2 million overspend on its €9 million budget.

In a press statement, Comhaltas welcomed the findings of the report, in particular in relation to its handling of the controversial Clasac centre. Comhaltas highlighted the report's findings that "the State's investment was appropriately administered and that programme expenditure was properly incurred and properly controlled" and that "the Comhaltas ardchomhairle has fulfilled its taxation obligations in a full and proper manner in relation to the Comhaltas development programme". Comhaltas claimed that "it has been totally vindicated in relation to the Clontarf branch issue".

For its part, Craobh Cluain Tarbh also welcomed the report, and in particular the statement that "it would be in the best interests of the Comhaltas development programme that the members of the dissolved Clontarf branch were actively involved in the usage and development of the Clasac centre".

However, Craobh Cluain Tarbh claims that, despite the report's recommendation that a mediator be appointed to bring the feuding sides together, Comhaltas has refused to engage in any mediation, citing its own constitution as a bar to such a process.

In fact, the substance of the report is at variance with Comhaltas HQ's response, as it states that failure to rebuild bridges with the expelled branch is likely to have serious consequences for Clasac's future: "It is incumbent on the organisation to ensure that whatever measures are required to resolve it are taken, whether this involves mediation or otherwise."

Despite plans to develop Clasac as a linchpin in Comhaltas's network of regional centres, Clasac's website lists a total of just five concerts in the period from October 2008 to October 2009, so it seems that intervention may be needed if this €9million centre isn't to become a highly visible white elephant, a bloated bequest of the Celtic Tiger." - The Irish Times

When you read between the lines of this government report, it seems to be extremely critical of Comhaltas and it's failure to resolve this issue.
Does anybody know if there have been any attempts by Comhaltas to start mediation to end this stand-off?


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Subject: clasac misunderstanding
From: The Sandman
Date: 10 Oct 09 - 11:39 AM

Saturday, October 3, 2009
Time to sort out Clasac misunderstanding[irish times oct3 2009]

Edited by DEIRDRE FALVEY

COMHALTAS CEOLTÓIRÍ Éireann has come under the spotlight of the Department of Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs in a report titled Funding Review of the Development Programme of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann . The report, writes Siobhán Long , examines the State's funding of the Comhaltas development programme between 2005 and 2009.

Controversy surrounded the decision taken by the Comhaltas ardchomhairle in February 2008 to expel its 400-strong Clontarf branch, known as Craobh Cluain Tarbh, alleging irregularities in relation to a VAT refund in the period when the Clontarf branch was managing the building of the flagship Clasac traditional arts centre on Alfie Byrne Road. Clasac includes a 250-seat auditorium, a recording studio, an archive/library, an intimate performance space and two bars. Comhaltas also alleged that the local branch had amassed a €2 million overspend on its €9 million budget.

In a press statement, Comhaltas welcomed the findings of the report, in particular in relation to its handling of the controversial Clasac centre. Comhaltas highlighted the report's findings that "the State's investment was appropriately administered and that programme expenditure was properly incurred and properly controlled" and that "the Comhaltas ardchomhairle has fulfilled its taxation obligations in a full and proper manner in relation to the Comhaltas development programme". Comhaltas claimed that "it has been totally vindicated in relation to the Clontarf branch issue".

For its part, Craobh Cluain Tarbh also welcomed the report, and in particular the statement that "it would be in the best interests of the Comhaltas development programme that the members of the dissolved Clontarf branch were actively involved in the usage and development of the Clasac centre".

However, Craobh Cluain Tarbh claims that, despite the report's recommendation that a mediator be appointed to bring the feuding sides together, Comhaltas has refused to engage in any mediation, citing its own constitution as a bar to such a process.

In fact, the substance of the report is at variance with Comhaltas HQ's response, as it states that failure to rebuild bridges with the expelled branch is likely to have serious consequences for Clasac's future: "It is incumbent on the organisation to ensure that whatever measures are required to resolve it are taken, whether this involves mediation or otherwise."

Despite plans to develop Clasac as a linchpin in Comhaltas's network of regional centres, Clasac's website lists a total of just five concerts in the period from October 2008 to October 2009, so it seems that intervention may be needed if this €9million centre isn't to become a highly visible white elephant, a bloated bequest of the Celtic Tiger.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Frank F.
Date: 27 Apr 09 - 12:08 PM

The night was very successful! Thanks to all who came. Hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.

Thanks especially to the Tap Room Trio (Harry Bradley, Jesse Smith and John Blake), Reelan and Kieran Wade who performed on the night. Thanks also to Sorcha Ní Riada who was the MC. Also to Liam on sound and Phil and Brian at Liberty Hall.

Thanks also to the Five Lamps Arts Festival who invited us to participate and who hosted the concert.

A quick word about the festival. The Five Lamps Arts Festival - now in their second year - have a very interesting take on the whole notion of an arts festival. They integrate community and environment into the heart of what they do in a way that I have rarely if ever seen before in an arts festival. Their voluntary community based ethos dovetails neatly with our own which makes them very attractive partners for us to work with. Check them out at www.fivelampsarts.ie


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Cathal
Date: 24 Apr 09 - 04:38 AM

Refresh


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Rory
Date: 22 Apr 09 - 04:59 AM

If it's as good as the last concert, I'll definitely be there.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Cathal
Date: 21 Apr 09 - 07:50 AM

The Tap Room Trio are playing at a benefit gig for Ceoltoiri Chluain Tarbh (the dissolved Clontarf Comhaltas branch)next Friday, April 24th in Liberty Hall, Dublin, starting at 8pm.
Hopefully all the friends of the branch who have supported us in the past will do so again in what promises to be another great night of music.
Further deatils are available at http://www.cluaintarbh.net/


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: knight_high
Date: 22 Feb 09 - 07:04 PM

I have said this before, but it is worth repeating in the present climate. Also the position of Uachtaran of Comhaltas becomes vacant this May. There are at least 2 candidates who have their hats in the ring. Vincent Jordan and Seamus McCormack. I would like to hear the views of these two gentlemen regarding the Clasac controversy. I am sure that the many thousands of visitors to this discussion forum (which include Comhaltas members, like myself), would like to read them also. Can anyone bring this to their attention??
___________________________________________________________

Many people who read this thread and many thousands more who dont, work very hard to promote Irish Traditional Music and song. Many organise and run small festivals, both within and outside of the Comhaltas organisation. Organisers can apply for funding from various organisations, Local Authority Arts department, The Arts Council, Fáilte Ireland, etc.
When they apply, or enquire about these grants they will be informed of the criteria by which they will be eligible. In most cases the rules and requirements will be freely available and accessable.
They will make an application, outlining in detail the plans for the event, budget, organisers, and many other details.
Does this sound familiar so far??
If the application is successful, you will be informed of how the grant will be paid, ie half before and the remainder after the event, ON PRODUCTION OF FULL ACCOUNTS AND A DETAILED REPORT.
The funding bodies publish lists of successfull applicants

All very hard work you'll agree, but fair - very fair. You make your pitch and if it is deserving and if the money is there you will get grant aid.

Among its other duties, the newly established Meitheal regional organisations are tasked with distributing C.C.E. within the organisation.
Is the Meitheal organisation elected by the members? No.
Do they publish guidelines for who can apply? No.
Do they publish the application criteria? No.
Is there an application form? No.
How is the grant paid out and when? Well we dont know.
Do Metheal insist on a detailed set of income and expenditure accounts? Dont know?
Do C.C.E. publish a list of successfull applicants? No.

See what i'm getting to? There is no accountability. The money is a personal slush fund to be distributed as the old guard desires. Any branch who don't toe the line or dare to criticise the Old Guard, will simply be ignored re funding. Oh and dont forget to invite the old guard to the launch banquet also or else!! And remember folks this is YOUR money. Your hard earned taxes. Before a hundred of you jump down my throat, I am not saying that the branches or the event organisers don't deserve their funds.
I am saying that if the systems, checks and balances are not there then it will be corrupt. It has to be by human nature. I hope that someone reading this will bring this situation to the attention of the relevant government department, or perhaps someone from Comhaltas HQ can enlighten us further


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Eileen
Date: 19 Feb 09 - 05:20 AM

Martins invitation to singing session at Clasac is followed by many objections to using Clasac for such events while the rightful tenants, Ceoltoiri Cluain Tarbh are out in the cold.

Martin's latest submission asks for the real story regarding Clasac, as he seems surprised at such strong objections to his invitation.

It all makes for interesting reading.

Eileen


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 18 Feb 09 - 09:05 AM

Thanks for fixing the link caitlin, I fell inadvertently into BBcode instead of HTML


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interru
From: caitlin rua
Date: 18 Feb 09 - 07:16 AM

http://www.thesession.org/discussions/display/20709


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Peter Laban
Date: 18 Feb 09 - 07:11 AM

Meanwhile, over on the session.org, Martin Donohue is posting encouragement to take part in [url=http://www.thesession.org/discussions/display/20709]new activities in Clasac[/url] and receiving a warm welcome while at it.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interru
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 15 Feb 09 - 03:52 AM

Another relevant thread:

Should O Murchu resign from Comhaltas?

http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=118630&messages=21


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: The Sandman
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 01:25 PM

imo ,he should resign .


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Eileen O'Connor
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 08:19 AM

Re. Tradfest

That's good news Martin, thanks. We at Ceoltoiri Cluain Tarbh would certainly like to take part in next year's festival.

We will keep your contact details and get in touch.

Eileen O'Connor


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Danno
Date: 11 Feb 09 - 06:30 AM

Another piece on the TG4 news last night about Clasach, apparently there is now an official departmental enquiry into the situation regarding the government grants and the dissolution of Cluain Tarbh.
As usual, no sign of Labhras O'Murchu when the reporters called, he always seems to delegate someone else to answer the hard questions.
Has anyone ever seen him speak to the media on this issue?


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: knight_high
Date: 10 Feb 09 - 09:44 AM

This from Martin Harte re latest posts.

Regarding the posts on the board. It is regrettable that any musicians from Clontarf felt excluded, this was most certainly not the intention and TradFest wish to correct that impression.

TradFest depends on the support of all community groups to stage the festival. This year, in the months leading up to the festival, a number of branches of Comhaltas in Dublin contacted TradFest of their own initiative and independently of each other to express their interest in taking part, this was the first time this ever happened and we were delighted. It was great that Tradfest was in a position to offer these groups a public stage to perform on, their coming together at the festival is the result of unrelated representations made to the organisers. Clontarf traditional musicians are very welcome to participate in future TradFests. Our doors are fully open to any traditional musicians who wish to help us grow this festival, the 2010 festival starts today and we look forward to hearing from all those interested in promoting trad music.

Martin Harte
Director
Temple Bar TradFest
27 Eustace Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2 T +353 1 677 2397 M +353 87 979 9207 F +353 1 677 2387 E
martin@tascq.ie
www.templebartrad.com


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interru
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 04 Feb 09 - 10:36 AM

Fair enough, Northsider. But I still do not regard the six-year period before changes even have a chance of being addressed as fair, however it's embedded. Such a long wait simply doesn't strike me as "democratic process", especially if members' subs are paid annually.

The coach and horses, however, is another matter.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Northsider
Date: 04 Feb 09 - 10:03 AM

Bonny

the "rules" are in no way "self serving". the comhaltas constitution (or bunreacht) is an exemplary document with all the necessary checks and balances to support the democratic process and guarantee justice and fair play. it is not so much that they are cowering behind it as that they have driven a coach and four all over it.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interru
From: Bonnie Shaljean
Date: 04 Feb 09 - 07:28 AM

Do the leaders in their unchallengeable power pay attention to ANYTHING anyone says? Even those members right on their doorstep, who are so vitally affected? If it's not about furthering the music through the youth, what is it about??? People in cushy jobs appropriating valuable assets and hanging onto their perks? Their silence is deafening.      

If you bosses at the high table want to retain any credibility at all, this time I think you're going to have to actually deal with opponents instead of running away and cowering behind self-serving Rules which are not subject to any fair process of change. You need to step out of your dictatorial ivory tower and actually interact with your community, even (I write it in a whisper) consider amending your stance, compromising and meeting them halfway. "Your community" is everyone, not just the people who agree with you. That means engaging with dissenters, not simply banishing them POOOOF-you're-not-there-so-the-problem-isn't-either. "Your community" means the nurturing of music, not your all-powerful positions in head office. "Your community" - and your future - means YOUR CHILDREN.

You leaders can't simply blame Clontarf and walk away - you're responsible too. And the current state of affairs is not doing you any good either - it isn't just the kids who are losing out. Is it really in your own interest to have such a large, organised number of people angry, alienated, and divided? Because a resource they worked long and hard for has been hi-jacked, without due process of arbitration or appeal? The dispute may be local but the bad smell wafts far beyond Dublin, and it's going to linger in the atmosphere.

I know it's tantamount to admitting that the seizing of Clasac was, at the very least, ill-considered and you don't like the feel of egg running down your face. But there's far a nastier substance than egg on it. We have the internet now, and we can meet and talk to each other over great distances, in public or in private, and you can't control it. Climbing down a bit will not make you look nearly so bad as you do at the moment. Take responsibility for your own part in this - which is a large one - and show some courage instead of hiding beneath your desks and hoping it will Go Away. It won't.   

It's not too late. Heal this, now, before this rift widens and grows more bitter - it's even causing splits in the branches from the sound of things. You're the only ones who can, since you've seen to it that you're the only ones with the power. It will also salvage at least some of the respect you have squandered. For the good of the whole body, it's time for some changes in the head.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Northsider
Date: 04 Feb 09 - 05:07 AM

Barry you are correct in what you say. effectively there were four branches on the northside of dublin that attracted a significant number of children. within an eight month period last year two of these were gone. one was thrown out and one walked unwilling to accept the lack of democracy in comhaltas. i dont know the exact figures but i can safely say that this amounts to a loss of several hundred young people. you're right Barry, the comhaltas heirarchy have lost sight of their mission!


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: Barry Finn
Date: 02 Feb 09 - 05:02 PM

Losing the youth would be liking to completely losing one's purpose.

Barry


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Teresa
Date: 02 Feb 09 - 04:15 AM

Wonderful to see the young excuminicated clontarf musicians in Temple Bar yesterday to meet up with and support their friends in the participating branches. It was too cold for them all to get a chance to have a sessiun outside and unfortunately they could find nowhere to go to play. Surely this is what Classac was for. It would have been perfect for a juvenile sessiun. Monkstown wake up and utilise this beautiful building you now have acquired!


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,teresa
Date: 30 Jan 09 - 08:19 PM

I dont think the organisers of the TradFest deliberately sidelined the young Clontarf musicians but by contacting CCE who dont acknowledge they exhist anymore they have been ignored in favour of Craobh Naithi and Sean Treacy branches. Its difficult for the young Clontarf musicians as they are friendly with members of these branches and feel hurt not to be included. By not being permitted to be in Comhaltas these teenagers are missing out on opportunities that would encourage them to continue playing Irish music for life.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: Declan
Date: 30 Jan 09 - 02:50 PM

While I'm a supproter of Ceoltoiri Chluain Tarbh, I think the notion that they are being boycotted by the Temple Bar Trad festival is a bit far fetched. I'd like to see some detail as to which members were booked previously, how did they get booked and in what capacity.

I don't know much about the organisers of Temple BAr Trad, but I have huge doubts as to whether they would be suseptible to influence from CCE head office in their booking policy. I know that Paddy Seamus and Kevin Glackin who have shown support for CCT at previous events are included on the bill.

By the wayh I enjoyed the quiz on Monday night. Well done to Brendan and the other organisers. Great turn out showed the level of support around the area for CCT.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Frank
Date: 30 Jan 09 - 02:39 PM

Northsider

Its not as though we (in Cluain Tarbh) haven't tried! We appealed our dissolution last June. Seven months later we are still waiting for a reply. The appeal was not even dignified with a refusal.

We have also asked for mediation to resolve the disputed issues. There was an approach made by the Mayor and other members of Dublin City Council - around last May if my memory serves me correctly. This initiative got short shrift as well.

What more can we do, Northsider?

Frank Flynn


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Northsider
Date: 30 Jan 09 - 01:04 PM

I don't know if it is true that Temple Bar Trad have sidelined the Clontarf musicians - perhaps someone might verify the truth or otherwise of this.

If it is true it is a needless escalation of this dispute. What is needed is to de-escalate this dispute and to find some resolution. For that to happen uninvolved parties like temple bar trad and the feis should not align themselves so closely with one of the parties. they should just stay out of it.


this dispute has gone on far too long and the ripples are getting increasingly damaging to traditional music in dublin. if the posts on this blog are to be believed the feis will be boycotted by at least some musicians and sean treacy session has been affected.

for gods sake cce and clontarf can you not get together and resolve it now before it totally wrecks traditional music in dublin.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: caitlin rua
Date: 30 Jan 09 - 07:10 AM

> I notice the young musicians from the troubled Clontarf Branch of CCE have been overlooked by the organisers of the Temple Bar TradFest... It would seem Labhras has power outside of Monkstown.

> Why have the organisers of the Temple Bar Trad allowed their festival to be contaminated by internal Comhaltas politics?


Fear of reprisals, overt or covert? It's a common tactic among dictators. Those in the head office can do anything they want to. There's no facility in place to stop them. Handy, isn't it?


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Emmo
Date: 30 Jan 09 - 05:33 AM

Why have the organisers of the Temple Bar Trad allowed their festival to be contaminated by internal Comhaltas politics? Why have they allowed their integrity to be compromised by such blatant unfairness? I support this festival every year, always attending a good number of the concerts. NOT THIS YEAR THOUGH!


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: caitlin rua
Date: 30 Jan 09 - 05:28 AM

What you ALL need is some transparency with regard to the ruling structure at HQ, and some power to affect it. But it looks as though they can do what they like, whenever they like, without any redress or consequences, while the members go on paying their dues without a voice. This is only the latest instance of it. But politicians always look out for their own, so it's no wonder nobody can touch Murphy, decade after decade after decade. He's got a cushy perch and his powerful pals in the government, honest lads all. ;-(   Good luck to the rest of yas.

If CCE is to retain any credibility in the Real World they should at least make an attempt at operating fairly. It's a measure of their contempt for the people beneath them (who provide a lot of the practical support) that they don't even bother going through the motions of fairness. Does it then surprise them that they (the leadership not the branch rank-&-file) are despised by so many musicians? And they are, make no mistake about that.

So, Sean Tracy: Clontarf's children and parents did all the slog work for years to achieve a building worthy of their talent and efforts, now you get to come lick the cream. There's a word for that, three syllables, starts with the letter P. Feel good about yourselves?
.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 30 Jan 09 - 04:11 AM

"Ceoltoiri Cluain Tarbh dont be fooled, you need CCE!"
On the other hand, wouldn't it be nice if CCE felt it needed Ceoltoiri Cluain Tarbh - shouldn't that be the case?
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,J.J.
Date: 26 Jan 09 - 10:34 AM

If it is held in Clasach, I believe there would be a boycott of the Feis by many musicians.
I wonder how much the organisers of the Feis know about the dispute over Clasach, or are they walking into this blind-folded?
Certainly, if the Cluain Tarbh musicians stay away, it won't be much of an event.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Eileen O'Connor
Date: 26 Jan 09 - 07:18 AM

Emmo, thanks for clearing that up. I can imagine that the issue of playing music in Clasac would be a difficult one for any branch.
I hope it is not causing too much disharmony for Sean Treacy branch.
This type of difficulty is a spin off of the whole debacle.

It should make the neighbouring branches of Comhaltas more aware of the disgraceful treatment of Clontarf and maybe encourage them to seek an appeal for Clontarf at the next Dublin County Board meeting.

If Clontarf was given their rightful place on the Board of Management of Clasac, all branches could all use the fantastic facility with light hearts. What a fabulous meeting place it would be for all our musicians, young and old. I look forward to that day.

Caitlin Rua, Sean Treacy are local enough to Clasac building

One other issue, the Dublin feis is being held in Clasac. This raises issues for the young musicians of Ceoltoiri Cluain Tarbh who are reluctant to play in Clasac. The organisers must know this. As Cluain Tarbh have been huge supporters of the feis over many many years, is this an opportunity to put the squeeze on us again?
What about the fleadh, where will that be held??

Eileen


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interru
From: caitlin rua
Date: 23 Jan 09 - 08:24 AM

Just out of interest, how far do they have to travel to get to Clasac? Is the Sean Treacy branch fairly nearby for them and easy to reach? (Which is part of what makes a branch "local".) Carrion crows - they should be ashamed.

[formerly Guest caitlín]


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Emmo
Date: 23 Jan 09 - 08:15 AM

Sean Treacy CCE is a branch of Comhaltas based on the northside of Dublin. According to http://comhaltas.ie/events/detail/sean_treacy_comhaltas_session/ they have taken up residency in Clasac on friday nights in the vacuum created by the dissolution of the local Clontarf branch


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interru
From: caitlin rua
Date: 23 Jan 09 - 08:04 AM

Who or what is Sean Treacy, and what happened? I think some of us beyond-the-Palers are a little lost!


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Emmo
Date: 23 Jan 09 - 05:57 AM

Eileen

Some in Sean Treacy are less gleeful than others about that "opportunity". There are some conscientious objectors in the branch who are refusing attend the session in Clasac.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,PL
Date: 20 Jan 09 - 05:43 PM

Some discussion about the latest, three million of state money flowing into Comhaltas coffers here


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST,Eileen O'Connor
Date: 14 Jan 09 - 04:25 AM

Sorry to see Sean Treacy taking advantage of the dispute over Clasac. A good opportunity for your branch, to step into the void.

However, its not exactly showing solidarity with Clontarf, but I suppose it's a free world.

A good music club is about great teaching, great fun and great music. A building is just a building.

I'm happy to report we have these three ingredients in spades, and have a fantastic calendar of social and learning events for young and old(er) for 2009.

Eileen


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interru
From: GUEST
Date: 06 Jan 09 - 10:59 AM

Phil the Fluther, if you're passing there tonight be sure to drop in as there's a session on from around 8.30pm - see details at http://comhaltas.ie/events/detail/sean_treacy_comhaltas_session/


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Jan 09 - 04:43 PM

Great to see so many fantastic musicians playing wonderful music on the Wren on St Stephens Day. They were from the dissolved branch of
Cluain Tarbh C.C.E. What is Labras about having them outside the organisation. I really think he should go and all his Ard Comhairle.
In these recessionary times it will be interesting to see if he will still be able to swindle grants out of the Government and come along and disband branches when he takes a dislike to them and put in his own people as was done in the case of Clasach. Anyhow I would like to wish Ceoltoiri Cluain Tarbh all the best for 2009 and keep up the good work you are doing in the name of Traditional Irish Music, Song and Dance. There are a lot of people behind you.


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Subject: RE: Battle of Clontarf-round two/Comhaltas Interruptus
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Jan 09 - 09:24 PM

Met lots of young musicians from the ex clontarf cce in gweedore playing great music along with musicians from beaumont sean treacy and kinseally branches over the new year holiday. If Classac was available to them perhaps thats where they might have been!


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