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The INJ Chair (2016-2018), Declan Somers, was interviewed by the Japan Times on March 9th, 2019. Declan who passed the baton to incoming Chair Emmett Bowen in early 2019 works for a Japanese NGO, Seibo Japan that provides school meals to children in Malawi. Malawi & Ireland have many similarities- both countries shared a colonial past and both have suffered periods of great hunger. To read the full article click HERE


The Irish Network Japan will kickstart an exciting year of Irish-Japan
cultural relations with a series of St. Patrick’s Day parades across Japan. 2019 also sees the Irish Rugby team and their legions of fans arriving in Japan and we have plans for plenty more events. Like our Facebook page and bookmark this site to find out more!

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Here is a map of Ireland for those who are planning to go there this summer or just came back. There are some clickable links hidden on the map (though many of them are in Japanese).

Here is a map of Ireland for those who are planning to go there this summer or just came back. There are some clickable links hidden on the map (though many of them are in Japanese).

Giant's CausewayBelfastQueen's Univ.Cromwell's Bridge

Ulster * for Northern Ireland

  • Co. Antrim (Aontroim) *
  • Co. Derry (Doire) *
  • Co. Tyrone (Tír Eoghain) *
  • Co. Down (An Dún) *
  • Co. Fermanagh (Fear Manach) *
  • Co. Armagh (Ard Mhacha) *
  • Co. Donegal (Dún na nGall)
  • Co. Monaghan (Muineachán)
  • Co. Cavan (An Cabhán)

map of Ireland


  • Co. Leitrim (Liatroim)
  • Co. Sligo (Sligeach)
  • Co. Mayo (Maigh Eo)
  • Co. Roscommon (Ros Comáin)
  • Co. Galway (Gaillimh)
Moyne AbbeyKylemore AbbeyAran Islands
SligoGalway Bay
DublinKilkenny CastleGlendalough
MonasterboiceTrinity College
Mellifont Abbey

  • Co. Louth (An Lú)
  • Co. Longford (An Longfort)
  • Co. Meath (An Mhí)
  • Co. Westmeath (An Iarmhí)
  • Co. Dublin (Baile Átha Cliath)
  • Co. Kildare (Cill Dara)
  • Co. Wicklow (Cill Mhantáin)
  • Co. Offaly (Uíbh Fhailí)
  • Co. Laois (Laois)
  • Co. Carlow (Ceatharlach)
  • Co. Kilkenny (Cill Chainnigh)
  • Co. Wexford (Loch Garman)

  • Co. Clare (An Clár)
  • Co. Limerick (Luimneach)
  • Co. Tipperary (Tiobraid Árann)
  • Co. Waterford (Port Láirge)
  • Co. Kerry (Ciarraí)
  • Co. Cork (Corcaigh)
Cliffs of MoherBlarney CastleCobh
Bunratty CastleRing of Kerry
Skellig Michael

Co. = County



Hi, My name is Alan Fisher and after 6yrs & 3mths working for a Japanese IT company, I’ve finally decided to make a change and open my own business here in Tokyo. Please have a quick read for more information.




Hello All,


Kindly allow me to introduce myself, my name is Alan Fisher and I’m from a small town in Ireland called Dundalk which is situated on the north east coast about 1 hour’s drive from Dublin in Co. Louth. The INJ have kindly allowed me this opportunity to share a little bit about myself and what I hope to achieve at 巨人のシチューハウス (巨人の=Giant’s, シチュー = Stew, and ハウス= House).



Perhaps I can begin by sharing some details about myself. In 2004 I returned from Kosovo while serving with the Irish Defense Forces and decided to go back to University. I graduated with a Business Degree from Dundalk Institute of Technology in 2007 and then a Masters in Marketing from Dublin City University in 2008.


Thats me in the front with loads of Sun Cream on. It was a super hot day…


It was around this time that I was introduced to FUJISOFT INCORPORATED here in Japan through the Irish Government’s FAS Overseas Graduate Program. After several interviews I was lucky to receive an offer of employment from FUJISOFT for a role in their Global Business Department. I arrived in September 2008 and began working with them from October that year.


Interestingly, when I first arrived in Japan I planned to only stay 2 years in the hope of gaining some strong experience that I could take back to Ireland. That plan never really went accordingly and having gotten married in April 2014 I started to consider my future and what would be best for my family.



My contract in FUJISOFT finished in December 2014 and after several months of careful planning I decided to try build a business around my strongest passions – Irish Culture, Music & Food. So 6 years and 3 months after first arriving in Japan, 巨人のシチューハウス was born.


My hope for 巨人のシチューハウス is to help educate and inspire a passion among people here in Japan for real Irish Food and Culture, by providing a selection of authentic, traditionally made comfort foods in an environment unique to my experiences of home in Ireland. 


With an abundance of fresh fish, dairy, and a wide variety of meat, Ireland has some of the nicest food in the world however I sometimes feel that in Japan we’re not getting the recognition we hope for with Italian, French, German & Spanish foods gaining much more traction in the minds of Japanese people with regard to European cuisine.


To help promote Irish food I’ve focused my attention on Stews. While Stewing is an ancient method of cooking common throughout the world. It was around the 1700s BC that the Celts, copying the Greeks, created bronze cauldrons to hang over their open ‘Spit’ fires to cook. At the same time, the Celts came to Ireland moving through Europe and this cauldron would become the dominant cooking tool. Within the cauldron a variety of meat, vegetables and herbs were stewed slowly for several hours. For example, The Celts in Ireland viewed sheep as an essential part of survival. It was a source of wool for clothing, milk for drinking & making cheese and eventually food. This meat would be tough so it would be stewed for several hours to perfectly tenderize.


If you would like to learn more about our Menu or why the Giant came to Japan please have a look at our website –


I hope to open on the 8th of February and if you’d like to come along to say hi you’d be more than welcome.  You can also follow my progress to date on the kyojin blog highlighting the trials & tribulations of starting a small business as a foreigner in Japan or you can find us on facebook or twitter.


Location – Togoshi Ginza Shotengai


Thank you very much for taking the time to learn more about what I’m doing and I very much hope to meet some of you in the future.


Go raibh mile mile maith agaibh

(A thousand thousand thanks)




Also – I'm currently looking for some part-time staff so if you'd like to get in touch please send a mail to


Founding, Feedback, INJ Ball, Sportsday, Hibernian Players, Kyushu, Charloer Haughey in Japan

Thanks to various co-founders and former Chairpersons for providing information for this. Also linked here is an Article by Kenji Hall about the making of the Parade Queen competition.
General Parade History here

Below includes; Feedback, INJ Ball, Sportsdays, Hibernian Players and Charlie Haughey in Japan

Founding of the INJ

The initial idea of the INJ was said to have been discussed after some get together of FAS Graduate Programme members in the Rising Sun pub (Members included Michael Garvey, Liam English, Tim Carew, Dave Thomas, Sile Ni Fhearraigh, Padraic Delaney, Greg Timmons, Dr. Paul Phelan, Jim Cashman), people saying that it was a good idea but we had to ensure it was not just a FAS initiative and that it included all of the Irish in Japan, and all of that leading to the meeting in the IDA ground floor offices in the TBR building which kicked it off. The meeting in the TBR building was set up and initiated by Mick. Both himself and Liam were IDA employees.

The first AGM was held in November, and so INJ as a structured organization started then. Padraic was elected Chairperson, and Tony O'Connor as Secretary. Another key member of the early days were Declan Collins, also with the IDA, who arrived after the initial launch and brought his experience of the Irish Network North California (started in 1986) . Some other early meeting were in Sophia University, thanks to great support from Fr. Donal Doyle, winner of the first INJ Personality of the Year Award. Must be noted that one of the biggest contributors to Irish society in Japan, Neil Day, had just arrived in Japan and attended the first AGM too.
The INJ newsletter was started by Padraic Delaney and Tony O'Connor towards the end of 1987. The 2 both worked as graduates in Obun Printing and had access to publish the magazine. At its peak Feedback was being delivered once a month with 16 pages of info that kept the community up to date with not just INJ events, but all Irish related goings on in Japan. After 10 years the Internet killed off the need for the newsletter; mailing lists and websites took over.

Some covers of feedback here.
Charles Haughey visits in 1989

1989 April : Taoiseach of Ireland, Charles J. Haughey's visits Japan.
With the Irish community being so small and very few community activities and organisations, the visit by the Taoiseach Charles J. Haughey to Japan in April 1989 was a major event for the Irish with added significance for those involved in representing Irish culture and business in Japan. 'Charlie' was greeted like a pop star then and was a great boost to the morale of the Irish living in Japan in spite of domestic political strife at home. The Taoiseach's visit preceded the 'Celtic Tiger' boom that was later to develop in the early 1990s. At that time the Irish government was struggling with unemployment rates close to 20% and inflation well above 15%. In any case, the visit by 'Charlie' brought a huge number of Irish people together who were living in Japan at the time including members of the Irish Network Japan.
INJ Annual Ball
The INJ was the first to bring the the concept of the 'Irish Annual Ball' to Japan with the first INJ Ball held in 1988 at the Tokyo American Club, near Roppongi. The first event was principally organised by Philip Greenan, Padraic Delaney, his wife Gwen and Sile Ni Fhearraigh and being the first they were very courageous to go ahead and take on this challenge. It was a scary undertaking as it was such a pioneering action with no one really knowing if people would attend or if costs would be covered. Happily it was very successful. Celebrating Irish culture with friends in our host country Japan, one of the features was the 'Irish Personality of the Year' awards. The INJ Ball usually held towards the end of the year has since given way to the now successful Emerald Ball, usually held the night before the Tokyo Parade. 
INJ Sports Days

1990s : Back in the early 90's, the Goannas Australian Football team and team Ireland played quite a few games of compromise rules football (mixture of Irish and Aussie footie) culminating in the launch of the annual Ned Kelly cup around 1992. The Ned Kelly cup is now a feature event of the current Sports Day held every year in Yokohama. The first Ned Kelly cup final was held at an American military base with the Irish winning.
INJ's 1992 St. Patrick's Day sports day was held at Ueno-Gakuen university grounds in Saitama, working with the now defunct Tokyo Irish Harriers Club who in fact were responsible for creating the first edition of the St. Patrick's Day Sports Day around 1990. The INJ was able to strengthen the games and to feature Irish football and hurling contests. In 1992 the games included the feature event of hurling with the sliotar thrown in by the then Ambassador James Sharkey, mixed Irish football, penalty shoot-out, tug-of-war, three-legged race, sack race and of course plenty of Irish food and drink.
The 1993 Sports Day was again another level up in terms of organization, it was held then in Kanto-Gakuin.
Nowadays the Sports Day is run by Japan GAA.
The first hurling match in Japan – the Munekata Cup – sponsored by Barry Tea, with the provision of Team Strips.
Some photos avaialble here
Kyushu Irish Network
From co-founder Keiran Marsden – The Kysuhu Irish Network, although being modelled somewhat on the Irish Network in Tokyo, was completely independent. We used to send each other information about events in our respective regions and include these in our monthly newsletter. Also then INJ chairperson Michael Chin made a trip to Saga for our inaugural meeting which for us was a great show of support. We received a lot of support from the embassy and various Irish businesses with activity in Japan at the time.

We founded the network in 1994 and it remained active in some form until at least 2001. Founding members were Keiran Marsden and Koichi Araki, owner of the first Irish pub in Kyushu. We ran several events including hosting a reception for the Irish team participating in the Universiade in Fukuoka in 1995. (Universiade is an Olympics like event for universities). We also coordinated getting Irish supporters to attend the various competitions.  
In 1996 we co-hosted a visit by the Irish Ambassador, Declan O'Donovan. The visit included meeting local politicians, a visit to the company who employed several FAS placements (of which I was one), a visit with Imaizumi Imaemon XIII who is a Living National Treasure in Arita and other social events with members.
Our primary focus was connecting members throughout Kyushu by organizing mostly cultural events in different area's and meeting up with other Irish and friends of Irish. A key point was promoting Ireland to the local populations.
After I left Japan it continued for some time and the name was changed to Kyushu Celtic Network to expand membership and scope to our Celtic brethren.

Hibernian Players
The Players did many shows to great acclaim, article about the first play Sive is here and below is an article from Feedback after doing the Roddy Doyle play Brownbread;

Brownbread – A Casts-Eyes view
by Michael Chinn
It is hard to describe the elation felt by every member of the cast and crew of Brownbread at the end of our last performance, following a one week run at the Tokyo British Club and in Hamamatsucho. It wasn't joy at reaching the end of what had been a mammoth undertaking for all involved, but rather the sheer enjoyment of having brought laughter to so many people who had been our audience.
I believe few of us realised just what we were letting ourselves in for when Martin Reilly sent out the clarion call for actors and crew in early April Some (myself included) had no intention of acting at all – I just wanted to help with the lights – but somehow eleven budding thespians were fated to pick up Roddy Doyle's scrip and take to the stage. The fame, fortune and glory of performing to our adoring public awaited us, and only three things stood in the way: rehearsals, rehearsals and rehearsals.
It is an unfortunate fact of the famed 'actor's life' that the average performer doesn't get it right first time, or even second, third or tenth time! Rather, behind every show there is a lifetime of practice – ad nauseam – accompanied by the stress which comes of forcing the brain to endure endless repetition of words and actions. Innocent conversations would start to sound like passages from the play, with cast members subconsciously switching into character to add humour to their words. However, despite the mental trauma, we pulled through and (we hope) brought Brownbread to life on stage. Of course, while the cast were busy bonding and coming to terms with their psyches, the many people who made up the crew were busy set designing and coming to terms with the need for Barry's teabags and cans of Harp.   However, no stone (or mammy's cupboard in Ireland) was left unturned in the search for props, costumes, music and all the other paraphernalia of the stage. As the weeks progressed towards July, the bedroom of a Barrytown house started to take shape, the dull Dublin sky outside grew ever more melancholy and the sounds of US Marine helicopters overhead all the more like Vietnam. The cast also started to look the part, as everything from Marine uniforms to a bishop's cassock appeared as if by magic from some undisclosed source, and the male actors were let into the magic secrets of make-up.
As is always the way, the performance dates hurtled towards us faster than a speeding Shinkansen and soon we found ourselves waiting in the wings for the opening music…Well the rest, as they say, is history. This just about brings us back to where this story started – at the end – and should give you some idea of how Brownbread was dragged kicking-and-screaming into the glow of the spotlights for certainly one of the most enjoyable, thrilling and fulfilling weeks of my life, and that of everyone else involved as well. The cast truly relished the whole experience (well, most of it at any rate) and we hope that the audience enjoyed our performances. However, there was of course much more to Brownbread than met the eye Behind the scenes, lurked the army of supporters, helpers, doers and advisors who really got the show on the road. Although this is an inadequate opportunity to say thank you to all those who helped out with Brownbread (they number several dozen people), the cast would like to thank everyone who put up with our whining over the past few months, and who allowed us to concentrate on the acting, while others looked after the difficult stuff. Especially, thanks to Martin Reilly, the producer, who made things happen, and to Adrienne Reilly, who made us make things happen. Thanks also to Tim Harris, who is to blame for casting us in the first place, to the INJ committee for all their time, and to the Tokyo British Club for their support during rehearsals. Finally, thanks to you, the people who came to see us do Brownbread.


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Parade listing in Japan since 1992




In the early 90s the Idea of Parade came up from John McKiernan (Also original editor of the Survival Guide), eventually going ahead in 1992 on what ended up being a Pioneering walk around Roppongi with a Piper and some speeches. Conor MacNamara should be credited with making it happen and also the enthusiasm of Ambassador Sharkey was inspiring to all involved. After considering another site in Ginza, the big move was made to Omotesando in 1993. That is now the permanent home of the Tokyo Parade, and the imagination has inspired the start up of 13 other Parade locations in Japan. Some former members have since moved to other parts of Asia and helped start other Parades there, notably Singapore and Seoul. About 60 marched in Roppongi, 250 in the first time in Omotesando, nowadays 1400 is the norm.

Parades outside Tokyo

Not to be confused that Irishness and St. Patrick's Day in Japan is limited to Tokyo, there has and still is various groups throughout Japan doing their own unique events with tireless amounts of volunteer. Tokyo of course will always get the limelight partly because of number of participants, but regional groups rival Tokyo in many other areas of event quality –> so if you get a chance try attend one. They usually are on different days than Tokyo! The progress of Parades can be seen above.

Some unique aspects of some regional Parades ; Parade on water, Parade under a roof, stamp rallys, anime characters, Oyster Festivals, mass ceili, dedicated after parties for all, live performances.

Note : Aomori, Kumamoto, Matsue, Tsukuba, Okinawa are/were independent of INJ, but we support(ed) them as much as possible.

Route of first Parade in Japan;

If you have any comments about this article please use the contact link at top right of the page


The Irish and Halloween
The time for the “trick or treat” has come. Senan will take you to the ancient Ireland where fairies and ghosts lived next door to your house.

The time for the "trick or treat" has come. Senan will take you to the ancient Ireland where fairies and ghosts lived next door to your house.


The Irish and Halloween


Halloween, the last day of October, is a time of fun and frolics for children and adults in numerous countries throughout the world. On Halloween night, children put on scary costumes and visit houses in their neighbourhood, shouting "trick or treat!" The children are given a treat – usually sweets or chocolate. If they are not pleased with the treat, they are allowed to play a trick. But most children are quite pleased with their treat and leave for the house next door.

Halloween is an ancient festival which began in Celtic countries, particularly Ireland, several thousand years ago. In the Middle Ages it became a Christian festival to honour all saints. At that time, it was given its present name, Halloween, which means the eve of All Saints' Day. The name Halloween, means All Hallows Eve, or the night before the 'All Hallows', also called 'All Hallowmas', or 'All Saints', or 'All Souls' Day, observed on November 1st. In old English, the word 'Hallow' meant 'sanctify' or to make holy or pure. Christians used to observe All Hallows Day to honour all Saints in heaven, known or unknown. They used to consider it one of the most significant religious days of the year.


 Despite this connection with Christianity, the modern celebration of Halloween owes its origins to the ancient, pre-Christian festival called "Samhain" (pronounced "sow-en") celebrated by the Celts in Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Samhain represented the end of the harvest, the beginning of the winter season and the second half of the year. In Celtic Ireland, summer officially ended on October 31st. This evening was seen by the ancient Irish as a time of transition when all laws of time and space were temporarily suspended, allowing the spiritual world to intermingle with the living world. Halloween night was the time to pacify the dead and other spirits. People believed that the souls of the dead appeared on this night along with witches, ghosts, and fairies. Bonfires were built on the tops of hills to keep the bad spirits away. Naturally the living did not want to be possessed. Therefore, on Halloween night, villagers would extinguish the fires in their homes, to make them cold and undesirable. They would then dress up in ghoulish costumes and noisily parade around their town, in order to frighten away spirits looking for bodies to possess.


The most interesting part of Halloween in Ireland was the traditional association with fairies and other creatures. People thought that fairies lived in ancient hills, and tried carefully not to disturb them, especially on Halloween. The fairies are said to have walked about on that night, searching for little children to live with. When a house-wife threw out the dishwater after supper, she would shout "seachain" in Gaelic Irish, which meant "water toward you", to alert any fairies that might be passing by. The fairies could then get out of the way. If they were splashed, they would often take revenge. The fairies are also said to have played enchanting music to catch people. Or sometimes a weak light could be seen coming from the fairy's treasure buried at the centre of the fairy's hill. In this case, a person had to hurry past, or they might be enchanted by the fairies forever.


The fairies could then get out of the way. If they were splashed, they would often take revenge. The fairies are also said to have played enchanting music to catch people. Or sometimes a weak light could be seen coming from the fairy's treasure buried at the centre of the fairy's hill. In this case, a person had to hurry past, or they might be enchanted by the fairies forever.


There are many types of special food eaten on Halloween night, and some of them have much to do with fortune telling. The most famous of these is barnbrack, an Irish raisin cake which is a favourite throughout Ireland. It is something to look forward to, not only because of its good taste but also because of the special things hidden inside the cake. If there is a ring in your cake, it means an early marriage. If there is a coin or a bean, it means you will be rich. A button stands for single life, and a pea for poverty. As you can see, Halloween night in Ireland long ago was quite enjoyable. Although people took care not to be caught by fairies and not to harm fairies, they really had a good time. However, in the nineteenth century, there was a terrible famine in Ireland and many people had to leave the country to survive and find work. Over one million Irish died in the famine and over one million went to American. The Irish immigrants brought with them the tradition of Halloween.


In America, in the days before Halloween, many children can be seen busy making "jack-o'-lanterns" out of big pumpkins. The Jack-o'-lantern or Jack of the Lantern custom is part of Irish folklore. Once there was a man named Jack, who was known to be a trickster and to drink a lot. Jack tricked the Devil into climbing a tree. Jack then carved the image of a cross in the tree's trunk, trapping the devil up the tree. Jack made a deal with the Devil that, if he would never tempt him again, he would promise to let him down the tree. According to the folk tale, after Jack died, he was denied entrance into Heaven because of his evil ways, but he was also denied access to Hell because he had tricked the Devil. Instead the Devil gave him a candle to light his way through the darkness between Heaven and Hell. The candle was placed inside a hollowed out turnip to keep it glowing longer. In Ireland, if a person sees a distant light in a field, people sometimes joke that it is Jack of the Lantern walking alone with nowhere to go.


When Irish immigrants went to the USA, they noticed that there were many pumpkins. Pumpkins were also easier to carve and place candles inside so people used pumpkins instead of turnips. Now the pumpkin is the symbol of Halloween. Although the Halloween we know today is different from the Halloween the Irish celebrated, it is great fun and is loved by people, young and old, in many countries, including Japan.The next time you see a pumpkin with a frightening face or a person in a scary costume, think of the Irish and how they celebrated Halloween or 'Samhain' long ago.


By Senan Fox
[Oct. 2005]



Derry City Council – Hallowe'en Carnival:



History of the INJ from 1987, compiled with input of all former Chairpersons and many key members

The Irish Network Japan was set up in Tokyo in July 1987, with the first AGM in November. Its aim was to provide a centre of communication, activity and exchange for Irish people living in Japan and to foster relations between the Irish in Japan and all those with an interest in Ireland. In the early years the annually elected committees created an energetic calendar of events (as much as six per month in its heyday) and was responsible for creating the first Irish Annual Ball, Sports Day and the St. Patrick's Day Parades in Japan. The central committee moved from being all Irish people in Kanto, to predominantly Japanese in Kanto, to now where it is a Japan wide committee balanced between Irish and Japanese representatives from the regional committees.


  • INJ stories from the past here (Founding of, feedback newsletter, Sports Day, Ball, Charlie Haughey, Kyushu, Parade Queen)
  • Parade history here (Details of Parade Growth and more on Tokyo Parade)
  • INJ booklets here (1993 Survival Guide, 1990 Green Frontier (Japanese), GAA rules (Japanese) )
  • Further links are below


1.Landmark Events and happenings
2.Organization structure
3.Further links

1.Landmark Events

text to complement above table;


1987-1992: Apart form doing more and more events (including regular Business Lunches, introduction of the INJ Ball and Sports Days) the 'Network' starts producing information booklets for Irish in Japan ; 'An Irishman's Guide to Survival in Japan' ,  GAA explanations in Japanese and a Members Directory detailing, the Job, Phone number and both Japanese and 'Permanent' Irish addresses of each member. There was also of course the newsletter, 'Feedback'..
In the early 90s the Idea of Parade came up, eventually going ahead on what ended up being a Pioneering walk around Roppongi with a Piper and some speeches. After considering another site in Ginza, the big move was made to Omotesando in 1993. That is now the permanent home of the Tokyo Parade, and the imagination has inspired the start up of 13 other Parade locations in Japan. Some former members have since moved to other parts of Asia and helped start other Parades there, notably Singapore and Seoul.
1992-1995: In terms of Events this is the busiest era of the Tokyo based INJ, with regular Business Dinners / Lunches, Ski Trips, Fuji Climbs, Christmas Parties, St. Patrick's Day events, the INJ Ball, Sports Day. All of this was communicated through the INJ Newsletter 'Feedback', which ran until 1997. At the time INJ had an Office which acted as a nerve center for everything. The Office moved around a few places ending up finally by The Black Lion Pub in Meguro, at the end of the 90s an Office was no longer used.
At this time there was a large amount of Irish coming into Japan and was just before widespread Internet and Irish Pubs, so of course the Irish in Japan were very interested in community. Around this time members paid a fee of about 7000yen to be involved with the INJ. The Fee was phased out from 1997.
1995-1998: . Since there was now some Irish Pubs in Tokyo like Paddy Foleys, there wasn't such as much a need for the INJ to organize parties. Email mailing lists reduced the need for a newsletter, and obviously information was a lot more accessible. So the membership fee was abolished from 1997 and income is, and still is, collected from Events and Sponsors. INJ committee members put a lot of focus on The Celtic Festival, which ended up too hard an effort in 1998. Hibernian Players were still quite active, a stage was even built in the Black Lion Meguro for their performances. 
2003-2010 : INJ begins to sprout up again committees outside of Tokyo and become a true All Japan organization. After a period of focusing mainly on the St. Patrick's Day Weekend (Parade & Sports Day), INJ begins increasing its events again throughout the Calendar year (Christmas Party, Festival Booths, day trips etc.)
2011: With further expansions INJ is decentralized and Head committee is changed from Tokyo to an All Japan committee. INJ goes backs to its roots and sets up a committee designed especially for Emigrant Support.

2. Organization structure


3. Further Links

307 years of Irish History in Japan here 
Press clippings 1993 to 94 here
INJ history facebook page here (Thanks to Neil Day)
more to follow…..

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Japan GAA gearing up for another Asian GAA tournament in Malaysia


We interviewed Mr Niall McGurnaghan, who is the Chairman of Japan GAA. He kindly told us the attraction of Gaelic Football and Japan GAA.日本ゲーリック・フットボール・クラブ (JapanGAA) の会長にインタビューをしました。ゲーリック・フットボールやJapan GAA の魅力についてお話をしてくれました。


Mr Niall McGurnaghan, Japan GAA Chairman

July 2012

What is Gaelic Football? ゲーリック・フットボールとは?

ゲーリック・フットボールはアイルランドの国技の一つで、伝統的にアイルランド国内だけでプレーされています。競技自体はサッカーとラグビーを合わせたような感じです。Gaelic Football is one of the Ireland's national sports and it is traditionally only played in Ireland. As a sport it is a bit like a mixture of soccer and rugby.

ゲーリック・フットボールのボールは円形で少しサッカーボールより小さいものです。革で出来ていて、サイズ5は男子用で、それより少し小さいサイズ4が女子用です。 ゲーリック・フットボールでは4歩まで手に持って進むことが出来、バウンドさせると更に4歩進めます。その後はソロという、足で自分に蹴り返すことをするか、そうでなければパスをします。パスはボールを手からキックするかフィスト・パス(ボールを掌か拳で打つ)をします。A Gaelic football is round, slightly smaller than a soccer ball and it is made of leather, a size 5 football is used for men's Gaelic and a slightly smaller size 4 is used for ladies. In Gaelic Football you can carry the ball in your hands for four steps and then you can bounce it once carry it four more steps and you need to solo (pass it from your foot back to yourself) or else pass the ball. You can either kick the ball from your hands or you can fist pass (striking the ball with the hand or fist) it.


ゴールポストはラグビーのものと同じH形をしています。ボールが H の下に入ったらゴールで、H の上を越えるとポイントになります。1ゴールは3ポイント分になります。ゴールキーパーがいて、ボールはどちらの方向にもパスできるのでフットボール(サッカー)に似てますが、オフサイドはありません。タックルは腕1つで相手の手からボールをはじき出したり、肩で押してボールを落とさせることが認められています。でも、体全体でタックルはしてはならず、また、スクラムもありません。その結果、ラグビーほど激しくはありませんが、動きが速くなります。The goalposts are the same shape as rugby posts, if the ball goes under the H it is a goal and if it is over the H it is a point. One goal is the same as 3 points. We have goalkeepers and you can pass the ball to any direction so it is like football (soccer), there is, however, no offside rule. Tackling using one hand to strike the ball out of your opponents hands and shouldering people off the ball is permitted, you cannot, however, use a full body tackle and there is no scrum, as a result the game is not as physical as rugby, but it moves faster.

なんだかオーストラリアン・ルールズ似てると思いませんか。オーストラリアン・ルールズは、長年に渡って何千ものアイルランド人がオーストラリアに移民をした結果、ゲーリック・フットボールから発展したものだろうと考えられています。今ではインターナショナル・ルールズという、オーストラリアン・ルールズとゲーリック・フットボールを合わせたゲームまであり、毎年インターナショナル・ルールズ・シリーズとして2国間でプレーされています。Sounds a bit like Australian Rules doesn't it …. it is thought that Australian Rules evolved from Gaelic Football as a result of the thousands of Irish who immigrated to Australia over the years. There is now even a game called International Rules, which is a hybrid of Australian Rules and Gaelic Football and it is played by the two nations in the annual International Rules Series.


It is great craic

ゲーリック・フットボールはとてもエキサイティングなゲームで、日本では男子と女子の両チームあります。 私たちの選手はアイルランド出身だけということは決してなく、日本を含め、トルコ、アメリカ、オーストラリア、スコットランドと挙げて見ただけでも幅ひろく違った国から来ています。アイルランド人を含めて、殆どの人がゲーリック・フットボールを以前にプレーしたことが無く、皆、同じようなレベルです。プレーした経験はJapanGAAでは必要ありませんので、誰でも歓迎です。楽しんで、新しい友達をつくることが目的で、何よりも職場や教室を出て広いところでスポーツをすることは気持ちが良いものです。Gaelic Football is a very exciting game and in Japan we have both men's and ladies' teams. Our players are by no means only from Ireland, they come from a wide range of different countries, including Japan, Turkey, America, Australia, Scotland to name a few. Most of them, including many of the Irish, have never played Gaelic football before so everybody is at the same level. No previous experience is required to play in Japan GAA and everyone is welcome to come and join us. It is all about having fun, getting to know new people and of course it is always nice to get out of the office / classroom and play sports in an open space.

ゲーリック・フットボールはプレーするのに素晴らしいゲームですが、JapanGAAでは遊びのことでも真剣です(^_^)。 トレーニングの後は大抵ビールを少し飲みに行きますが、やはり自然とゲーリック・フットボールの話題になってしまいます。でも、これは一緒にプレーをする仲間と親しくなるには最適で、トレーニングの後に友情も芽生えるかも知れません。私たちはまた、バーベキューやチーム旅行、クリスマス・パーティーなど多くの楽しいイベントも行っています。Gaelic Football is a great game to play, but we also take our socialising very seriously in the JapanGAA (^_^). After training we usually go for a few beers, naturally we end up talking about football but we believe that this is a great way to get to know the people that you play with and may a new friendship a blossomed after a training session! We also organise club BBQs, team trips, Christmas parties, and many other fun events.

The Asian Gaelic Games


The annual major event for the Japan GAA is the Asian Gaelic Games.

This is an annual Gaelic football (7-a-side) tournament that has been held since 1996. Teams from across Asia including Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Dubai, UAE, Shanghai and Korea compete every year for the Derek Brady Cup and the Ladies Cup. Last year the tournament took place in Seoul and the Japan Teams did not live up to the previous year’s success (Ladies team winning the Ladies Cup in 2010 & Men team winning the North Asian Games in 2010). The Asian Gaelic Games in try Irish tradition do not stop once the games are over, at night the players from all the various teams head out to party! The last few years consisted of a traditional Korea BBQ, a cruise on Hong Kong harbour was organised for the Saturday evening and fun was had by all.


This year the Asian Gaelic Games will be held on the 27th/28th of October in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. We are training hard for both the matches and the parties … so do come and join us!


Gary speaks about his ambitions in Japan…



Mr. Gary Thompson, Professional Race Driver

  August 2010  

Racing in Japan

All things going well, I would hope to move on to Formula Nippon, and then F1. Eddie Irvine, Richard Lyons, Ralph Firman have all done very well here and I hope to follow their success. Japan is well respected all over the world for Racing, but actually a lot of those people that respect it, don't really know what's happening here. It would be great if it got more coverage, as there is so much going on here.
The teams and races here are organised with the same professionalism as anywhere else in the world, so I have fitted in quite comfortably.

Coming out to Japan

Initially it was difficult to adjust, and was very confusing. But pretty quickly I got used to it, still working on the language. Everyone here is really helpful, which is great and it's a really enjoyable place to be. I am only here when Races are on, so there is no problem of being homesick. I get home when there is a decent gap between races. Enjoy the lifestyle out here hanging out in the usual spots in Tokyo and the great food, especially yakiniku!


For me, Suzuka is the best track in the world, and is my favorite. I would also really love to drive in Macau F3 street circuit race held in November. I drove it in Formula BMW last year, and it was such a great track that I hope to get back there again.


Quite happy with the team I am in at the moment. I always would look to drive the best car that is out there. So if I made F1 one day, I would just want to join the best team at the time. This year, it would be Red Bull, but next year it could be different.
When at home I drive a Suzuki, but have my eyes on a Nissan GTR.

Inspirational Driver?

For Japanese drivers Takuma Sato impressed me a lot, he was very fast and did well in F1. He would have been popular too back home too of course because he drove for Jordan.
But really Michael Schumacher changed the face of motor racing when in came on the Scene. Everything about him, his commitment, attitude to fitness etc. Everyone else had to step up a level to compete.
My Dad was also a Racer back in his day, and he has encouraged me ever since I could fit into a Kart. Without him I wouldn't be here today.


Gary Thompson web site: