Michael Hayes, a longtime Publicity Club activist, with Michelle Morrisroe, Cullen Communications
The Publicity Club of Ireland, an industry body for advertisers, agencies and publishers first set up in 1923 with Dr Lombard Murphy of Independent Newspapers as its inaugural chairman, is to be wound up. A special meeting will be held in Buswell’s hotel in Dublin next Monday night at which the club will be formally ‘decommisioned’.
Among those who chaired the club down the years were Michael Kenny of Kenny’s Advertising; Eileen Ball, Johnson Bros; Billy King, Independent Newspapers; Bill McHugh, Irish Press Cuttings; Michael Hayes, Arks/DIT; Eddie O’Mahony, Peter Owens and Neville Galloway, Golden Pages/RNAB.
While the club was an integral part of the industry up until the late Eighties, it struggled in recent years, particularly in winning new recruits. Eventually it became evident that its ageing membership and lack of new blood meant that the same people were being rotated on the club’s officer board.
In 1998, the club celebrated its 75th anniversary. While younger recruits like Ian Hyland and Fintan Cooney tried to add vibrancy, the club was unable to build on their input and make itself relevant. After years of reshuffling the pack, its 30 members recently decided it was time to wind up the club.
At the meeting next Monday, club members will be invited by chairman Tom Connolly, a photographer, to debate and agree on how best to close its bank accounts. It is understood that the club has over €20,000 in funds and that is after donating monies to The Advertising Benevolent Society (TABS).