Club History

Swords Toastmasters held its first meeting in September 1994 in the upstairs function room of the old Harp Inn, North Street, Swords. The club has been run continuously and successfully. Since 2004*, through all its Members successes, the Club has achieved the highest status ‘award of excellence’ possible in the Toastmaster International organisation, i.e. President Distinguished Club

In 2000, due to the redevelopment of the Harp Inn, our meeting venue moved to the Hawthorn Hotel, Main Street, Swords. This lasted until 2007 when we relocated back to our original venue, which is now called the Carnegie Hotel.

Our Past Presidents

1. Noel O’Beara 1994 – 1995

2. Donal Horan 1995 – 1996

3. Sean Shinnors 1996 – 1997

4. Anne Patterson 1997 – 1998

5. John Brangan 1998 – 1999

6. James Madden 1999 – 2000

7. Dermot Hamilton (Deceased) 2000 – 2001

8. Joe Bishop 2001 – 2002

9. James Madden (Deceased) 2002 – 2003

10. Dave Halpin 2003 – 2004

11. Joe Bishop 2004 – 2005

12. John Mulligan 2005 – 2006

13. Aidan McCann 2006 – 2007

14. Ann Gibson 2007 – 2008

15. Harry Laird 2008 – 2009

16. Hugh O’Malley 2009 – 2010

17. Seamus Hynes 2010 – 2011

18. Hugh Gallagher 2011 – 2012

19. Robbie Boardman 2013 – 2014

20. Fergus O’Donoghue 2014 – 2015

21. Alec MacAlisiter 2015 – 2016

22. Antoinette Kane 2016 -2017

23. Michael Madigan 2017 -2018

24. Patrick Cregg 2018 – 2019

25. Joanne Newman 2019 – 2020

How it Works

A Toastmasters meeting is a learn-by-doing fun workshop in which all participants improve and develop their speaking, organisational and listening skills in a very friendly atmosphere. As a result, they become better confident, competant SPEAKers and leaders.

A typical Club has 20 to 30 members who meet forthnightly. We meet at 8.00 pm for an 8.15 pm start of meeting. We finish by10.30 with a 15 minute Tea/Coffee break. All of this allows for time to mingle and ask questions before, during and after the meeting.

Toastmaster meetings are all about you. Your improvements, which happen in friendly and fun way. All members presentations are evaluated and given positive feedback and encouragement. This process is a key part of the program’s success. It is a very sucessful and effective step by step way of improving.

Participants at meetings are invited to give impromptu talks and prepared presentations on planned assigned topics. Also, learn how to conduct meetings and to develop skills related to timekeeping, grammar and meeting procedures.

Members will learn to improve their communication skills by working through the planned structured new Pathways programme. This new program is about 21st. century style of communications and development. The programme has many aspects and is designed to instil confidence and develop all the basics in public speaking, communications and leadership.

In our learn-by-doing approach, we do not lecture members about these skills. We show and give each individual the opportunity to develop. We explain the responsibilities of each role. Experienced members offer mentoring to help each person to become a confident communicator and competant leader. No Magic wand, learn by doing with encouraging and positive feedback.

Life-long Learning

I joined Swords Toastmasters in the last two years (when I retired) because I believe in Life-long Learning. Right from the first evening there has been nothing but a warm welcome and a genuine camaraderie in conversation and the sharing of knowledge.
It was a good decision

Alec MacAlister

Relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere

I joined Swords Toastmasters in 2006 and have enjoyed it since day one.
It has been a very positive learning experience in a relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere.
I would recommend Toastmasters to everyone, as where you meet like-minded people from all walks of life who are interested in personal development, communication and leadership skills.

Seamus Hynes

Overcome your fears

“I am delighted to be part of Swords Toastmasters, as it has given me the structure, techniques and confidence to deliver my speeches and really connect with my audience. I would highly recommend it if you want to overcome your fears about public speaking.” 

Fidelma Greene