From “Black and Amber” to “Purple and Gold“!

When producing our “History of Kinvara GAA” book in 2006, we did a bit of research in our club colours. We include that article below (with many thanks to Tony Moylan in the process).
Since then, we have done a little more digging and came across a couple more of references – one from 1968 and then another gem from 1952. That piece from 1952 basically states that our true traditional colours are in fact black and amber!
“Fielding in its new black and amber jerseys, colours of a Kinvara team of long ago….”

You can read it all here.

2006 – A History of Kinvara GAA extract

Colours - The story of......


Page 162 of “A History of Kinvara GAA” by Toddie Byrne 2006.
“Upon my research I attempted to find the story of the colours of the Kinvara jersey. This proved quite interesting as it seems that in the past fifty years Kinvara has had five different club jerseys. This is what I could find and again it may be open to correction.

It appears the the first and original Kinvara colours were black and amber stripes going across. This was used in the fifties and right up to the early sixties. These jerseys can be seen in photos such as the 1957 juvenile team and the 1959 junior team. Why these colours? One explanation is perhaps due to Kilkenny being so strong in hurling at the time, and so Kinvara felt we could be the same! Or simply they were just a set of jereys we came across at the right price!
These jerseys involved green with yellow stripes going across. It appears these jerseys were used sometimes in 1962 to the late sixties. This jersey can be seen in the 1966 Kinvara intermediate team photo. But where did the colours come from? The story is that in 1962 Kinvara opened their pitch, Faiche Padraic, or St. Patricks Park. The colours of St. Patrick are traditionally green and yellow. Hence the change to commemorate that.
It appears the sometime in the late 1960s Kinvara changed to an all orange/yellow jersey. Thsi jersey was used up the the early seventies. Nobody knows the reason for the change. It is suggested that John Joe O’Shaughnessy was on the look out for a new set of jerseys and a travelling salesman had this set at a good price! The orange/yellow may also have come from the family colours of the O’Hynes family, but I believe that is just a coincidence and we have John Joe to thank for them. Unfortunately no photo exists of these jerseys.
The colours, a light change from the previous, came onto the scene in 1973, and existed up to 1979. Someone, who shall remain anonymous, decided to get new jerseys for Kinvara as the old ones were falling apart. He decided to add the red sleeve to the jersey in the style of the Arsenal team of the time. This jersey can be seen in the 1973 U21 team photo and the 1975 junior team photo.
In 1979, the Kinvara club changed their colours to the Wexford style purple and gold. It was seen at the time that Wexford had a very strong team in the late seventies. Their players looked big with the yellow shoulders and the purple belly, so it was decided that the Kinvara lads could follow that, not that some of them looked big enough already! These jerseys made their debut by beating Castlegar in the county league in 1979 in Ballinderreen. The omens looked good! These jerseys have now been with Kinvara for the last 26 years, and have been with us in county final victories, and unfortunately in county final defeats.

So there goes the story of the Kinvara colours as best I can find. But was there another colour? If you look at the Kinvara Junior hurling team photo of 1952, it appears the colour wasn’t the black and amber as used in the 1957 juveniles. Maybe it was originally a form of yellow, and so may explain why every Kinvara colour has it or a similar type colour, ie gold or amber. Or what about a jersey of white with red cuffs and sleeves? These seem to have been used for football matches in the eighties. Perhaps borrowed from the soccer club?

Whatever the story and whatever the jersey, it seems to me that Kinvara were always ones to have different colour jerseys to any other Galway club. We always liked to be different, and always did things our own way. But what are the true colours of Kinvara GAA club? Is it time for a change back to a former colour? Something to think about.

Note: Tony Moylan told me to look at the Fleadh na gCuach poster of 1995 – that’s the poster with the young red-haired boy on it. ¬†Anyways, if one was to look closely at the bunting going across the street, one would spot that their colours are different, and are in fact the colours of the five Kinvara jerseys mentioned above!”


1952 – Black and Amber

Colours - 1952

Connacht Tribune 1952
“Revived Kinvara Team’s Success
Kinvara 2-6; Ardrahan 0-2
Fielding in its new black and amber jerseys, colours of a Kinvara team of the long ago, the revived Kinvara club played a more skilful brand of football to defeat an Ardrahan tea, that had little except keeness and stamina to pit against the seasiders skill. Kinvara won by a score of 2-6 to 0-2.
The game was bright and open and in the first half looked even enough. The second period saw the Kinvara players settle down to cleverer football.
Kevin Sexton, a Munster Colleges player, was Kinvara’s match winner. His partner at centrefield, Curran, played fine football. Colm Corless as centre-half back was in fine form. Moran, Leech and Connolly were effective in a good spoiling back line. The Murphy brothers and Regan were outstanding in the forwards.
Ned Quinn, Hehir and Bond were sound in the Ardrahan backline. The brothers Tarpey, Daly and Murray strove hard in a forward line that was too light.
Mr. Frank Murphy was a capable referee.
Scorers for Kinvara who led 1-2 to nil at half time were Murphy (1-1), Hanlon (1-0), Regan (0-3) and Sexton (0-2). Ardrahan points came from Quinn and McInerney.

1968 – Orange Jerseys!

Colours - 1968

¬†“The first appearance of Kinvara senior hurlers in their new orange jerseys at Pairc Shamhairne, Ballinderreen on Sunday against Gort in the semi-final of the 11-a-side competition, was also the occasion of their narrow defeat!”

1979 – Purple and Gold!

Colours - 1979


“Resplendent in their new purple and gold (Wexford style) jerseys, Kinvara’s junior hurling team advanced to the semi-final of the Co. League at the expense of Castlegar at Ballinderreen on Sunday”