Martin Murray sporting the Aeracha Uladh GAC jersey. Photo: Debbie Hickey

Calls for LGBTQ+ GAA teams on Leeside

Are you a member of LGBTQ community with a passion for GAA?

Martin Murray is bringing GAA in Cork and Munster to, what he said is, “the queer world with an inclusive LGBTQ+ GAA team”.

Martin is the founder of Aeracha Uladh GAC and the NI Liaison for Sporting Pride.

He started as an original member of Na Gaeil Aeracha last year, the world’s first LGBTQ inclusive GAA club, in Dublin. It now has more than 3,000 followers and well over 100 members.

What was once an idea in the form of a tweet by Carl Shannon (founding member) has snowballed into a pride movement that is knocking on our door here in Cork and Munster.

Martin was travelling more than 5 hours from Belfast every weekend to play for this team and so started Ulster’s first LGBTQ GAA team which in its first 4 months has almost 1,500 followers and more than 100 members.

This venture gained him nominations at The Belfast Pride awards for Innovative Service of the Year, Event of the Year and Activist of the Year.

Now he is starting teams in Connacht and Munster so dust off your football boots and get back on that pitch because he is ready for you.

These GAA teams are all about inclusivity, welcoming anyone and everyone of any race, gender and sexuality to come along and join the family.

Speaking with the Cork Independent, Martin said: “I thought if we have this fantastic opportunity in Leinster and Ulster, then it’s time for Munster and Connacht to have the same. I will be coming to Cork soon in order to get a feel for the place and show a welcoming face in Cork to try to build the team and spread the message. Spreading the word in Belfast came easy, as performing as a drag queen gave me so many connections to those in the queer community.”

He is hoping to get the ball rolling in Cork just as in Belfast and Dublin. The organisation has already made connections with big names such as the LGFA who will hopefully support the new team in its foundation.

As Martin is also an esteemed member of the organisation Sporting Pride, he says that the sporting world has already been taken over and GAA is the final straw to bring about a new healthy outlook on equality in the sporting world.

He said: “GAA for me was kind of the final sport. Carl's tweet in 2020 was the 1st mention of an inclusive GAA team so is definitely a new path to go down but is growing incredibly fast.”

If this sounds like your thing, make sure you don’t miss out and catch regular updates on their Instagram @aeracha_uladh_gac and @sportingprideireland.