LMFM commentator and GAA's McNamee Award winner, Colm Corrigan - respected on both sides of the Boyne!

'As people from County Meath have said to me, at least it will be one Louth success at Croke Park this year!'

Caoimhín Reilly


Caoimhín Reilly


LMFM commentator and GAA's McNamee Award winner, Colm Corrigan - respected on both sides of the Boyne!

LMFM's Colm Corrigan. (Pic: Arthur Kinahan)

If LMFM are 'the voice of the north-east', Colm Corrigan must then be the voice of local Gaelic games. His distinct tone is known the length and breadth of both Louth and Meath, whether that be as a result of his commentary on Sunday afternoons or merely down to his morning sports bulletins. His twang is certainly not to be mistaken.

Call it an overdue success, but last Thursday morning saw the Dowdallshill man honoured with the GAA's McNamee Award for his outstanding documentary, 'When Sam crossed the Boyne'. The hour-plus long piece was dedicated to marking the 60th anniversary of Louth's third - and most recent - All-Ireland senior football success where Seán Cunningham's goal helped the Wee County to trump Cork at Croke Park.

Acting as producer and narrator, Colm was able to marry interviews with surviving members of the team and family members of those to have passed with music and commentary of the final itself in what translated into a highly popular listen.

"A lot of work went into it. It's time-consuming, organising interviews and meeting people, etc. But it's well worth it when you sit down to put it together and you realise that you have a lot of different stories and anecdotal stories from a way back," Colm said of his piece.

The birth of the idea came last Spring at the planting of a tree in Ardee to commemorate some of the '57 heroes to have passed. Certain interviews were conducted at the scene, while others required some arranging. In all, he spent six months compiling the documentary which went over the airwaves at Halloween. So, perhaps it was fitting that almost a year since coining the idea, he received word that he is to become the first local winner of the gong.

"It's a nice one to get. They don't come around too often and it was a bit of a surprise, but it's nice to get a little bit of recognition and as people from County Meath have said to me, at least it will be one Louth success at Croke Park this year!

"When you're putting in your entry, you don't know what other people are putting in. It's a national award so it's very hard to know what you're up against because, around the stations, you're up against a lot of very good presenters.

“From that point-of-view, you'd have to be proud that whoever was judging the competition at Croke Park deemed that your one was the best of the lot."

He describes the process as a "labour of love" having previously put together several such pieces for the station he has worked for since 1992. St. Patrick's Day, 1992, to be exact.

Now 26 years on the sports team, there have been many highlights, though he remains undecided if the 2010 Leinster final is one of them. Surprisingly, it's more recent matches which Colm files in the memorable category.

Along with the Sean O'Mahonys' dramatic Louth and Leinster runs of 2014-16 and Louth ladies' All-Ireland junior success of 1998, the last two junior finals have captivated the commentator considering the drama-aplenty that unfolded with St. Kevin's and Glen Emmets capturing Christy Bellew a year apart.

But, perhaps it's the reaction to his award-winning entry which pleases him most.

"It's a very enjoyable job and it's great to get good feedback, but, again, it's always nice to remember the likes of the '57 team and a lot of lads who are no longer with us. The likes of Tom Conlon, when you're able to get his team-mates to talk about him and to be able to talk about him in such high regard, the way he came back into the team and made everybody click beside him. The family appreciate that too, to have a lasting tribute made to the likes of him."

New GAA President John Horan will make the award presentation to Colm on Holy Thursday, March 29, at HQ.

"It'll be a good night, we'll have a few family members and a few reps from the station there as well hopefully. We'll enjoy the night and make the most of it because, as I say, they don't come around very often!"

Following the retirement of the legendary Meath commentator, Brendan Cummins, last winter, Colm has now assumed the role as station sports editor and, as goes with the territory, he has started covering a few of the Royals' matches, permitting they don't clash with Louth's outings.

Indeed, he may be the only man welcome on both sides of the Boyne!

"I don't know about that," he chuckled.

"You have to be as fair as possible and to give as much balanced coverage as possible. Sometimes that can be difficult in LMFM. When I was starting off, for a long number of years, Meath were the successful team and Louth were , I wouldn't say ' second class citizens', but they were not as successful and winning the silverware that Meath were .

"It's probably levelled out in the past few years, but you try to be as fair as possible and I would hope that I've managed to do that in my years at the station."

Colm Corrigan. Respected. Recognisable. Good at his job. McNamee Award winner.