Galway Branch

Next Branch Meeting

The Summer meeting of Galway Branch of the Retired Teachers’ Association is planned for Wednesday 31 May 2023, in the Menlo Park Hotel.  The meeting will be preceded by Mass for Deceased Members of the Branch.   Detailed notice will issue nearer the date.

Galway Branch RTAI Blog:

Social Programme Autumn 2022.

Tour  Abroad: Slovenia, 2nd to 9th September 2022. Balance owed to the Travel Department must be paid by June 24th.  Make sure you have insurance and EU Health Insurance Card. 


Singing Group: Members will be contacted by the group organisers with details of return arrangements.  Return is planned for mid September 2022.  New members are welcome, please contact or text 086 3836567 and I will put you in contact with the group.


Healthy Heart and Bones Exercise Class (Women and Men) With Shauna Duffy. Certified Athletic Therapist. (BSc.Hons in Athletic and Rehabitation Therapy.)  Zoom   9.45 – 10.45 am, Mondays 19th, 26th Sept., 3rd, 10th 17th October. Option to continue classes. Prior registration required: questionnaire to be filled by each participant to assess the needs and level of the group. Cost €25 (subsidised by the Branch). Places limited.


Yoga Classes: with Siobhán Moylan, an experienced yoga teacher.  Zoom/Inperson in Kilcornan studio, 10-11am, Five Thursdays 22th, 29th Sept, 6, 13, 20th October 2022. Option to continue classes. Cost: €25 (subsidised by the Branch).  Places limited.


Day Trip: The day trip is being planned for Wednesday 12 October 2022.  Details later –It will be in Co. Galway!


Lecture: “Friends come and go but relatives accumulate: Sources for researching your family history.” Marie Boran, Special Collections Librarian, James Hardiman Library, NUI,Galway. Wednesday 16 November 2022, Menlo Park Hotel, 11am.


Meet for Coffee: 3rd Monday of the month, beginning 19 September 2022.  Poppy Seed Café, Galway Crystal.  10.30am. Parking available.  Bus Routes 409 from city centre and 404 from Oranmore. This works well in some other branches.  This could be arranged in other areas if there is a demand for it.


Book Club: Friday 16 September 2022. Zoom. New members are welcome, even if you just need some ideas for reading – members suggest many different books.  Since we have a summer break, we are being ambitious with our list of proposed reading.  The books for this meeting are as follows: The Magician by Colm Toibín, The Invisible Child by Andrea Elliott,The Four Winds by Kristin Hannah, Comrades – A Lifetime of Friendships by Rosita Boland


Beginners’ Computer Classes. With Eileen Treacy. Galway Education Support Centre.  Five Fridays from Sept 16th. This course is booked by the members who are taking the first part of the course now in May.  Please let me know if you would be interested in a course and we will try to cater for you. Text 086 3836567.

Mass for Deceased Members of RTA Galway: 10 February 2022, Tuam Cathedral.

Each year Galway Branch organises Mass to remember deceased members and deceased loved ones of  members. This year RTAI Galway Branch Mass to remember deceased members and the intentions of current members will be on Thursday 10 February 2022 at 10 am in The Cathedral of the Assumption, Tuam, and online at


Latest Updates 26 November 2021

Dear RTAI members,

I send you best wishes and hope that you are keeping well.  Little did we think that we would still be drawing on our optimism and resilience at this time.  I hope that we can remain optimistic and focus on enjoying the small simple pleasures of life, while observing the health advice.  I am looking forward to when we can meet face-to-face again.

Galway Branch Annual General Meeting:

Our Branch AGM is usually held in December.  However, in the light of rising Covid infection rates, and taking cognisance of Public Health Advice to reduce our social contacts, the Branch Committee have, with disappointment, cancelled our hotel booking for our AGM, which was planned for 1 December.  Our first priority is the health and well being of our members.

The Branch Committee will hold an online meeting, taking the responsibility for approving the Branch Accounts and for making nominations to National Executive Committee. I will propose that we nominate Pádraig Ó Conaill (Co. Cork) for President RTAI 2022/2023, and Mary McCarthy for Vice President.  It is envisaged that the current Branch officers and Branch Committee will continue for the present.

Branch Committee:  Carmel Niland, Martina Johnson, Padraigin Moylan, Pat Duddy, Brian Hynes, Laoise Ní Chomhraí, Mary Kyne, Máire Ní Chuinneagáín.

The Branch Committee has decided that we will organise a Branch Meeting in Spring as soon as infection rates and public health advice allows.  We are anxious that members can meet as soon as possible, and we have some plans for local outings and lunches.

We plan to make nominations for Branch Committee, Branch Auditors, Delegates to Annual Convention, Motions for Annual Convention at the next meeting of the Branch.  (Annual Convention is planned for 6 April 2022 in the Croke Park Convention Centre.)

Contacting RTAI  Head Office

RTAI  staff are working from home again.  However telephone enquiries can be dealt with as normal via the office number  01 2454130. (Please call in the morning if possible). Email enquiries can be sent to

Pension Increase: The current pay agreement Building Momentum provided for a 1% increase in public service pay and pensions from 1 October last. This increase, inclusive of back-pay from 1 October, has been applied to pensions issued on 11 November.Under the Building Momentum agreement, a further 1% increase will be payable from 1 October 2022.

Members in nursing care, hospital or confined at home,

Even though you cannot attend meetings, you are not forgotten by RTA.  We remember you and wish you blessings and peace.

Go gcumhdaí Dia sibh go léír.

Máire Ní Chuinneagáín    086 3836567



Social Programme Spring 2022.

We hope that the Singing Group, the Bridge Club and the Computer Classes can begin in the Education Centre in January 2022.  This will depend on Covid circumstances.  Other events for January and February are online.   If you are interested in any of the Zoom events listed below, please reply by email to  preferably by 21 December.

If you have any  queries, please phone or text me 086 3836567.


Book Club :Zoom 11 am Wednesday 12 January 2022. The books for this meeting are as follows: The Promise by Damon Galgut, Songbirds by Christy Lefteri, Small Things Like These by Claire Keegan. New members welcome, even if you just need some ideas for reading – members suggest many different books.

Singing Group: Every Friday 1.30 to 2.30pm. Galway Education Support Centre. Covid Vaccination Cert necessary. Subject to change, depending on Covid circumstances etc.  New members welcome.

Beginners’ Computer Classes. With Eileen Treacy. Galway Education Support Centre.  Friday mornings.Covid Vaccination Cert necessary.  Please let me know if you are interested and we will try to cater for you. Text 086 3836567.

Yoga Classes: with Siobhán Moylan, an experienced yoga teacher. Zoom, 10 am, Thursdays 13th, 20th 27th January, 3rd, 10th, 17th February 2022.  €20 (subsidised by the Branch).

Healthy Heart and Bones Exercise Class (Women and Men) With Aideen Coates-Farrell.  Zoom   9.45 – 10.45 am, Mondays 17th, 24th, 31st January, 7th, 14th, 28th February 2022. Prior registration required: questionnaire to be filled by each participant to assess the needs and level of the group. Cost €20 (subsidised by the Branch).

Lecture: Wednesday 19 January 2022. Recycling and Waste Management 11am. Zoom.  Tiarnan McCusker (Galway City Council) and Mary Healy (Walsh Waste).Find out exactly what goes in which bin and how our waste is managed. Please email if you would like to attend. I will forward a list of attendees’ emails to Tiernan, who will manage the Zoom invitations.

Lecture:Wednesday 2 February 2022, Zoom Getting from Knowing to Doing, Making and Maintaining Changes for your Heart Health’ at 11am on Wednesday 2 Feb 2022.  Dr Lisa Hynes, Health Psychologist and Head of Health Programmes at Croí Heart Health.

Croi Heart Health have asked each attendee to register directly with them. Register in advance for this meeting via this link

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Activities / Clár Sóisialta – Earrach 2020

Mindfulness Morning: with Aidan O’Flynn Thursday 9th January 2020 Begin the New Year well. Education Centre

Singing Group: Commences 16th January 2020 with Mary Tansey – 1.15 to 2.15pm, every Thursday, Education Centre. New members, both male and female, are welcome.

Yarn Club: The last Thursday of the month, 2.15pm to 3.15pm 30th January; 27th February; 26th March; 30th April. Bring along your craft project or learn from others. Education Centre

Creative Writers’ Group with Geraldine Mills 5 classes, 11am to 12.30pm Thursdays 6th, 13th, 27th February , 12th and 19th of March 2020. New members welcome. Education Centre

Book Club: Thursday 28 Nov 2019 Solar Bones by Mike McCormack, Say Nothing by Patrick Radden9.30am to 11am Education Centre.

Thursday. 13 Feb 2020 The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri, A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles 10am-11am Education Centre. New members welcome.

Tai Chi with Cathy Nicolas 5 sessions Thursdays 5th, 12th, 19th, 26th March, 2nd April 2020. 2.30pm to 3.30pm. Education Centre

Computers: Beginners Continuation Course 5 classes Tuesday, 14th, 21st January, 4th, 11th and 25th February 2020. This course is fully booked. New cohort beginning in September 2020, DV.

Lecture: Pádraig Ó Conaire, by Brendan McGowan. Wednesday 11 March 2020 10.30 a.m. Menlo Park Hotel.

Loughrea Lunch: Wednesday 25 March 2020 Loughrea Hotel 1.30pm €15 (subsidised). We hope members from Loughrea, Gort, Ballinasloe, Portumna areas will find this location convenient.

Day Tour: Claregalway Wednesday 27th May 2020. Visit to the Forge and Museum, Tour of Claregalway Abbey with local guide, Lunch in Claregalway Hotel, (own expense). Tour of restored Claregalway Castle. Bus available. €10 secures your place on the tour.

Tour Abroad Travel Department Gulf of Trieste and Slovenia 7 nights, 3 star, Departing 7 September 2020. €879 pps. Book under RTA Galway with Alice. She has given a reduction of €20 off the listed public price and will cover the cost of 10kg baggage which is a further €20 saving. Alice has reserved 6 single rooms and 6 twin rooms for RTA Galway You can book now. 01 6371640   016371600  

Bridge Club continues on Thursday mornings. Education Centre.

History of RTAI - Summary
The Retired Teacher’s Association of Ireland was founded in the school year 1951/52. In the beginning the organisation was known as “The Pensioned Teachers’ Association” and was based in Dublin, for the most part. It remained quite small until the 1970s, when the title was changed to the recent one – Retired Teacher’s Association – and an effort was made to increase membership throughout the country.
Photos from the Early Years (Click on thumbnail to enlarge photo)

History of RTAI - Full Details
The RTA was involved in the process to have Survivor’s Social Welfare Pension paid to men as well as women, which was not the case until a High Court Case was prepared in 1994. The Association was highly active in the campaign for the abolition of the Probate Tax, as it applied to surviving spouses. At its AGM of 2007, the word “Ireland” was added to the title, to establish international recognition for website purposes, and so the association became the RTAI – The Retired Teachers’ Association of Ireland.

Craobh na Gaillimhe

It would appear from the minutes of a meeting in 1992 that the Galway Branch was founded by Mr. Tommie Martin former President of INTO in 1975.

The earliest record in the Galway Branch is of a meeting held in 1979 when a tribute was paid to the deceased members M. Kane and W. Hourahan. There was no detail given on the general discussion that took place but the following members were listed as having paid their membership:

  • Galway Area

Annie Healy, Onóra Bn. Uí Chonchúir, Anne Cannon, Eithne Bn. Uí Riain, Brid Bn. Uí Mhurchadha, Áine Bn. Uí Lochlainn, Maura Hanrahan, Bríd Bn Mhic Fhlionn, Mairéad Bn. Uí Laoi, Elizabeth Mulvihill, Nora Divilly, Kathleen Heagney, May Murray, Patrick Joyce, B. Ó Suileabháin, Conchubhair Ó Donnchadha, Ml. Ó Reachtathra, Seán Mac Conraoi, Micheál S. Ó Suilleabháin, Brendán Ó Míodhcháin, Tomás Ó Cuinn, Caitríona Ni Chuinn, Mairéad Bn. Ui Duigneáin, Máire Bn. Mhic Sheadbhaird, Una Bn. Mhic Ghaill. Gretta Martyn, Charles Doyle, Bridie Doyle, Maura Swords, Bríd Nic Dhonncha.

  • Tuam and Dunmore Area

Dunmore: Maureen Lyons, Mr. & Mrs. O Dwyer, Brendam Nestor, Jim Greaney, Miss Halliday, Mrs Kelly, P Corcoran,

Tuam: Miss Sal Mc Donagh, D.J.Murphy, Jim Conroy, Paddy Quinn, Tim Bray, Frank Burke, Mr. & Mrs. Michael Concannon, Mr. & Mrs. Jim Maloney, Brendan Ryan, Pat Carney, John Mullin.

Headford: Mrs. O Reilly, Mrs. B. Heneghan, Mrs. O Malley and Mr. Ml. Lovett.

First Recorded Minutes

There is no record of minutes for the 1980’s only a list of members who attended the two yearly meetings Nov./Dec. and May/June were recorded. The first recorded minutes are from the AGM 1992, which was held in the Atlanta Hotel on the 27th May. Thirty members were present. Mr Seán Mc Cahill, Vice Chairman chaired the meeting in the absence of Mrs. Anne Quinn. The minutes were proposed and seconded by Alice Mc Ardle and Séamus Mac Donncha. There was £641 in the current account and £406.69 in the deposit account – the current account had greatly improved since the subscription was increased from £3 to £5 per annum as it had been difficult to make ends meet on £3.

Elected Officers

Chairman: Seán Mc Cahill

Secretary: Máire Diskin

At the meeting Mr. Tommie Martin spoke of the late Pat O Connor and his contribution to the branch referring in particular to their trips around the country “roping them in” in the early days and his immense contribution in later years to meetings. A vote of sympathy was passed to the families of deceased members.

Miss Nora Maloney, Mrs. Nora O Toole, Miss Margaret Tighe (my aunt), Miss Kathleen Lohan, Antóin Ó Loideáin, T O Reilly, Liam Mac Donncha, Miss H. Coen, Miss Sarah Diviney, Pat O Connor, A Gleeson, Tomás de Bhaldratha, former president of INTO.

Points of Interests from other meetings
  • 1993
    • Three past presidents of INTO were present at the AGM – MR. Tommie Martin, Mr. Morgan O Connell and Micheál Mc Sweeney.
    • Mrs Diskin retired as secretary a position she held for 7 years and was replaced by Seán Mc Cahill – a position he held until 2005. Máire Diskin took the position as Chairperson of the branch.
    • Tribute was paid to Tommie Ward past President of INTO who died during the year.
    • The Branch sent good wishes to Bob Doyle who had been an excellent secretary of RTA for 10 years. Our present secretary Mr. Denis Desmond replaced him.
    • Mrs. Diskin President of RTA addressed the INTO Congress.
    • Lunch cost £7.50 and was subsidized from branch funds.
  • 1994
    • AGM was held in the Warick Hotel, Salthill.
    • There were 3,300 retired teachers in RTA with 230 in the Galway Branch.
    • AGM Proposals:
      • “That a booklet outlining the benefits of membership of RTA and the entitlements of retired teachers be prepared so that a copy could be given to each new member or prospective member.” Proposed by M. Mc Sweeney.
      • “That synchronization of pension increase arrears and salary increase arrears be demanded of the Dept. of Finance.” Proposed by Morgan O Connell.
      • “That the December pension be paid before Christmas.” Proposed by Alice Mc Ardle.
    • Mrs Máire Diskin was made an honorary member of RTA at the May meeting of the National Executive.
  • 1995
    • AGM Proposals
      • “Let the pressure remain for fortnightly pay.” ( Morgan O Connell)
      • “That the tax on pensions of teachers who retire early be reduced.” ( Mrs. Gardiner)
      • “That the 27% tax rate only apply to teachers who retire at 65.” (Seán O Connell)
      • “That retired teachers be granted a tax allowance for their children.”
  • 1996
    • £7 fee for members came into effect in February and it was desirable to have all members fees deducted at source.
    • Tribute was paid to Michael Moroney, General Treasury of INTO who retired.
    • There was an increase in pensions from the 1st of June 1996 of 11/2 % and two further in creases of 11/2 % in October 1996 and 1 % in January 1997. Another 2 %was being negotiated. Teachers present expressed their disappointment at what appeared to be an erosion of indexation of pensions, a principal regarded as sacred by all teachers, and the following motion was proposed by M. Diskin and seconded by Jimmy Halliday – “That in future, prior to negotiations with the Department of Education on teacher salaries and allowances that might impact on teacher pensions, consultation will take place between the INTO and RTA.”
    • Morgan O Connell was elected Chairperson a position he held until 2005.
  • 1997
    • RTA membership 3823. Galway Branch 275, Dublin 777, Cork 319.
    • Morgan O Connell proposed, seconded by Maitias Mac Donncha that an Honorarium of £200 be paid to the secretary.
    • AGM Motions
      • “That the Galway Branch favour the introduction of a written short constitution for RTA.
      • That Seán Mc Cahill be a member of the Executive RTA”
      • Proposed by Máire Diskin, seconded by Pádraic Mullarkey.
  • 1999
    • Draft rules and constitution of RTA was adopted.
    • Caroline Kelly and Aidan Nicholson were appointed auditors – a position they held until 2007.
    • Members of the Galway branch of retired teachers were invited to supper at the INTO Congress held in Galway.
    • AGM Motion: “In light of the danger to the principle of parity of pensions of retired teachers we, the Galway Branch of RTA demand that in all future salary negotiations with the Dept. of Education and Science it should be reaffirmed that the principle of parity is an inalienable and well earned right of retired teachers.”
  • 2000
    • Money deducted from pensioner’s cheques under the heading PRSI s really a Health Levy
    • Motions for AGM:
      • That pensions due for the full month in which a teacher dies be paid in full.
      • Teachers who were forced to retire due to the marriage ban should be compensated for their resulting loss of earnings now that they have reached pension age.
      • That the fortnightly payment to retired teachers be expedited.
      • That the free schemes operated by the Department of Social, Community and Family Affairs, which from the 1st of October 2000 will apply to all persons, be given to all over the age of 69 years and not 75 as proposed.
  • 2001
    • Branch Secretary’s Honorarium was increased to £300
    • RTA Membership 4910
    • In future we must fight for parity or its equivalent.
  • 2002
    • Seán Mc Cahill became President of RTA.
    • The secretary mentioned the 20euro deducted every February from pension for the upkeep of the organization: six euro per member is given to branches and 1% increase – a once off was given in April to pensioners.
    • Margery Long president of RTA was welcomed. She was wearing the recently presented chain of office.
    • Galway teachers demanded equality of treatment and benefits for single teachers who presently receive no benefits from their PRSI contribution to that element of the survivors and orphans pension scheme. Proposed by Martha Gurren and seconded by Caroline Kelly.
  • 2005
    • Martha Gurren elected as Chairperson.
    • Vincent Tedders elected Secretary and as a candidate to the National Executive.
  • 2006
    • Two motions were proposed and seconded on a subvention to cover Nursing Home care and another on benching marking that pensioned teachers would get full recognition of same in their pensions.
  • 2007
    • Morgan O Connell proposed that the cost of the lunch be reduced to 10 euro in few of the strong financial position of the branch.
    • Caroline Kelly elected as Chairperson.
    • Mary Kyne proposed that an outing be organized and an invitation to participate be given to all members of the branch.
    • Social Committee elected: Mary Kyne, Margaret Tedders and Sylvester Cassidy.
    • P.J. Callinan and Sylvester Cassidy elected auditors.
    • The Honorary Secretary stressed the importance to maintaining “credits” until one reaches the age of 66.
    • Motions for AGM
      • “That pensioned teachers receive full recognition of the benchmarking award in their pensions.
      • That VHI automatically keep up deductions from teacher’s pensions after they retire so as to maintain continuous health cover.
  • 2008
    • A copy of the RTAI handbook was sent to every member.
    • Mary Kyne congratulated as Secretary of the events committee for organizing computer classes, a lecture and an outing to Coole Park.
    • Mary Kyne elected secretary.
    • Teaching Council that was in operation since 2006 was passed into law. It was funded by the Department of Finance for 2 years but then the teachers had to pay 90 euro per year, subject to tax deduction.
    • Teachers can no longer take early retirement and may have to contribute more of their salary towards pensions.
  • 2009-2017
    • Full details of the association affairs were documented in the Secretary’s annual reports.

Branch Officers

Martina Johnson


Máire Ní Chuinneagáin


Padraigín Moylan


Contact Us

086 3836567