Irish Ramblers Club Archive

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IRC badgeThe Irish Ramblers Club Archive is the newest addition to the Dublin City Sports Archives.  Since 2010, Dublin City Sports Archive has acquired material in written, visual and oral form, relating to a variety of sports and leisure activities from hockey, boxing, soccer, cycling, swimming and golf. The formal transfer of Irish Ramblers Club Archive was marked by a reception at Dublin City Library and Archive on 23rd November 2017, which included a talk by club historian Jack Morrissey and a poetry reading by first club president Sean Quinn.

The Irish Ramblers Club was founded in 1964 with the mission statement, “to explore, enjoy and protect our beautiful countryside”.  It has had 4000 members over a 50 year period and organises over 400 hikes per annum. The Club from the outset has taken a very proactive interest in conservation of mountains and forests of Dublin & Wicklow and has contributed to national issues – such as national parks, environmental awareness, rights of way and the development of the Wicklow Way.

The twelve archive boxes and electronic records from The archive of the Irish Ramblers Club will be of interest to sports and local historians, family historians and especially to future Irish Ramblers Club members.

Irish Rambler's Club group photo

Occupying quite a large part of the Ramblers collection is the Club’s monthly magazine and bulletin, “The Rambler”. The magazine explores all aspects of being a Rambler. From the sporting to the social, the organisational to the professional, “The Rambler” not only offers a comprehensive insight into the structure and general activities of the Irish Ramblers Club but it also documents a social and sporting history of its members. It is full of fascinating stories of friendship, romance, danger, competition, and an overall love and passion for hillwalking and hiking. This particular segment of the collection offers researchers an opportunity to discover the growth and development of the sport spanning almost half a century, from 1965 to 2011.

The remainder of the collection offers a thorough insight into the organisational and administrative activities which have helped the Irish Ramblers Club develop and maintain a professional approach to its management and affairs.  Of particular interest are the AGM and Executive Committee Minutes which document how the club has evolved and developed. The General Correspondence files also highlight the strong relationships the Irish Ramblers Club has with a variety of other national and international organisations.

Here are some photos from the event to mark the formal transfer of the Irish Ramblers Club Archive to the Dublin City Sports Archive at Dublin City Library and Archive on 23rd November 2017. The event formed part of the “Explore Your Archive” 2017 which showcases the potential of archives to bring communities together and tell amazing stories.

Dublin City Archives would like to thank all of the members of the Irish Ramblers Club who have contributed to the efforts to collect and preserve the club’s archives. A special word of thanks is due to the current Irish Ramblers Club president Bob Nugent and secretary Ann Egan and club historian Jack Morrissey. Jack has had an integral part in gathering the archive together and carefully prepared the material for transfer.  We would also like to acknowledge the work of contract archivist Conor Hearte who has prepared the Irish Ramblers Club archive catalogue in accordance with the highest professional standards.  

The collection will be stored in the purpose built archive strongroom at Dublin City Library and Archive, and the original records themselves can be viewed by researchers in the Reading Room.

The Dublin City Sports Archive was established by Dublin City Library and Archive in September 2010 to provide a lasting legacy to Dublin’s term as European Capital of Sport.   It aims to  collect, preserve and make accessible to the public, records relating to sports events, clubs, sporting organisations, and records of sporting individuals, fans and players. The Dublin City Sports Archive ensures that records which reflect the rich sporting heritage of our city and county are given a permanent and secure home.

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