The Artane Boys’ Band en route to America in 1962; the image was on an album in 1969
Last week, it was reported that Dublin City Councillor Mannix Flynn, a former resident of the St Joseph’s Industrial School in Artane, was putting a motion down calling for the Artane Band to be renamed.
The original Artane Boys’ Band was established by the Christian Brothers at St Joseph’s in 1872 and started to become involved with the GAA in 1886.
Mr Flynn was reported as saying:
“It’s an absolute insult to those of us who are still trying to recover. When you go to Croke Park and that band marches out, we are constantly reminded.”
Further to this, two days ago, Mr Flynn released a statement that he is changing his motion and, instead of asking for the band to be renamed, he’s calling for the Artane School of Music to be disbanded.
In his statement, he said his new motion is as follows:
That this monthly meeting of Dublin City Council, mindful of the shameful legacy of institutional abuse in industrial schools documented in the Commission of Inquiry into Child Abuse, call on the Artane School of Music to disband as a matter of human rights.
The School of Music is an establishment jointly run by the Christian Brothers and the GAA, yet encompasses the original and traditional insignia and uniforms that hark back to an age of chronic sexual and physical abuse at the hands of the religious.
The Artane Boys’ Band was used as a front to hide the gross inhumanity that took place at St Joseph’s School in Artane and other industrial schools run by the Christian Brothers at home and abroad.
The harrowing memories of these institutions for abuse victims are regularly flaunted without care or recognition at national sporting events in Croke Park in the form of the present Artane band.
A disbandment of the trust would sever all ties with the former industrial school and its brutal history and in doing so, would acknowledge the ongoing collective suffering of so many.
Further to this, the Lord Mayor of Dublin Brendan Carr has released the following statement this afternoon, ahead of this weekend’s All Ireland Football Final:
“Congratulations to The Artane Band on their 130 years of proud association with the GAA and Croke Park. I urge all Dublin fans attending the big match on Sunday to show their support and appreciation for the ‘other’ boys and girls in blue, as they entertain us all and march in front of the parade of both teams at Sunday’s final.”
“Please show your support by giving them a special cheer of appreciation for their unwavering and dedicated service and commitment to the GAA and the fans over the years.”
Pic: Mannix Flynn