Ref NoPOL41
TitleThe Maurice Hayes Collection
DescriptionMaurice Hayes was born in Downpatrick in 1927, and was educated at St. Patrick’s High School in the town, and later attended Queen’s College Belfast (1944-1948) where he obtained a BA in English.

Maurice Hayes played on the Down hurling team, served as Secretary of the Down County Board, and later as a delegate at the Central and Ulster Councils. He was part of the backroom team that helped deliver All-Ireland titles for the County in 1960-1, and was close to Paddy O’Keeffe, Down County Secretary.

Maurice Hayes served as Town Clerk of Downpatrick from 1955 to 1969 – the role had previously been held by his father. During his time the issue of housing was to the fore of his work, as well as the day to day running of the council. There were also efforts to improve amenities in the area. During this time he also joined the Association of the Local Authorities of Northern Ireland.

The Ulster Placename Society operated mainly with officers from Queen’s University Belfast in the 1950s, and was interested in various aspects of place-name lore. Maurice was later a member of the Ulster Countryside Committee in the 1960s.

Maurice Hayes served as Chairman of the Community Relations Commission from 1969 until his resignation in January 1972 in the aftermath of Bloody Sunday. As well as working on the ground in both communities, Maurice also encouraged research into the area.

The Sunningdale Agreement attempted to establish a power-sharing Northern Ireland Executive and a cross-border Council of Ireland. It operated from December 1973 to May 1974 when a loyalist general strike caused the Executive to collapse. Maurice Hayes worked in the Executive Secretariat at this time.

The Northern Ireland Constitutional Convention was an elected body set up in July 1975 by the UK government. The unionist majority voted to retain majority rule in November 1975, but this was not acceptable to the nationalists or the UK government. Direct rule remained in place. Maurice Hayes joined the staff of the Convention as advisor to the Chairman, Robert Lowery.

Following the end of the Northern Ireland Constitutional Convention, Maurice Hayes spent some time in the Department of Manpower Services, before moving onto the Department of Health and Social Services until his retirement in 1987. Throughout this time the civil service operated under Direct Rule by the Northern Ireland Office. Maurice took on a number of campaigns on social issues, as well as being involved in the day-to-day running of the Department.

In 1976 Dan Rooney, the former US Ambassador to Ireland and owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers along with businessman Anthony J.F. O’Reilly set up the Ireland Fund to promote peace, culture and charity in Ireland. On St. Patrick’s Day 1987 it amalgamated with the American Irish Fund (established in 1963 by John F. Kennedy and Éamon de Valera). Maurice Hayes was Chairman of the Ireland Funds in the Republic of Ireland.

Maurice Hayes was a long-serving non-executive director of Independent News and Media PLC. He retired from the Board in 2009. Much of the material here relates to his opinion pieces contributed to the “Irish Independent” as well as his work in association with the history of the newspaper.

From 1987 Maurice Hayes served as a member on various commissions, conducted reviews and authored reports. These covered the areas of policing, community affairs, industrial relations and administrative practices.

Maurice Hayes served as a member of Seanad Éireann from 1997 to 2007 for two terms, as an appointee of the Taoiseach on each occasion.

From 1994 to 1996 Maurice Hayes published three books of biography with Blackstaff Press. These were Sweet Killough: let go your anchor; Black Puddings with Slim and Minority Verdict.

From 1994 to 1996 Maurice Hayes published three books of biography with Blackstaff Press. These were Sweet Killough: let go your anchor; Black Puddings with Slim and Minority Verdict.

Maurice Hayes took a keen interest in Europe throughout his career. In particular he served as Chairman of the National Forum on Europe, which operated from 2001 to 2009. It served as a forum between politicians, organisations and the public in relation to the role of Europe in Ireland, covering such issues as the Treaty of Nice, the EU Constitution and the Treaty of Lisbon. Maurice also received the European of the Year award in 2004 for his work on Europe.

Scope and Content
The collection covers the main aspects of Maurice’s career and interests, mainly dating from the 1960s to the present day. Some of the early material relates to his father, as well as some items from his time in Queen College Belfast. His interest in the GAA is reflected in reports on the development of hurling in County Down, and in later years a number of commemorative volumes. Local Government material relates to Downpatrick UDC, more general local authority matters and material from the Northern Ireland Town Clerks’ Association. There is some items reflecting Maurice’s membership of the Ulster Countryside Association. In the 1960s. The material from the Community Relations Commission reflects much of the research done in the area by the Commission, as well as correspondence surrounding the operation of the Commission. There is a lot of correspondence, memoranda and speeches associated with the Power-Sharing Executive of 1974 when Maurice was working in the Executive Secretariat. There are a large amount of papers relating to the Northern Ireland Constitutional Convention and from his time with the Department of Health and Social Services and his dealings with the Northern Ireland Office.
After his retirement from the Civil Service in 1987 he was appointed Ombudsman, and there is a great deal of correspondence, official papers and speeches associated with his time in that role. A number of other interests from this time are reflected in the holdings including the Ireland Funds, Independent News and Media Plc and his autobiographical writings. Other material covers his work on various commissions, including a great deal of material from his time on the Patten Commission on Policing in 1999. There is also some material from his membership of Seanad Éireann and his chairmanship of the National Forum on Europe.

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