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IRUPA Unveil The Nevin Spence Memorial Trophy

IRUPA Unveil The Nevin Spence Memorial Trophy

Designed by Hillsborough-based silversmith Cara Murphy, the Nevin Spence memorial trophy will be presented to the 2014 IRUPA Young Player of the Year at the Hibernia College IRUPA Rugby Players’ Awards on Wednesday night.

The piece was commissioned by IRUPA following the renaming of the award last year to the Nevin Spence Young Player of the Year in memory of the Ulster centre.

Nevin was awarded the IRUPA Young Player accolade in 2011 and IRUPA members, the players, believe it is a very fitting tribute to Nevin and his family.

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Cara Murphy’s design utilises solid silver creating a contemporary piece which represents strength, commitment, and unity and achievement, attributes Nevin, a former recipient of the award carried with every day – both on the playing field and in life.

The piece is comprised of 32 gold plated silver blades representing the 32 counties and is reminiscent of grass, denoting grassroots, the foundation that supports rugby across the island of Ireland.

Central to the piece are four larger silver blades representing the four provinces – coming together – in achievement and holding aloft a solid silver rugby ball. The trophy is mounted on a mahogany base and is engraved with the all the winners’ names since the inaugural award back in 2003.

Commenting on the trophy, Nevin’s sister Emma Spence said: “Our family is delighted with the trophy, it is a fitting tribute to Nevin and a wonderful piece for the Young Player of the Year to receive.

“We’d like to thank Cara for her vision and skill which has created a lasting accolade.”

Cara added: “It has been an honour to undertake this commission in memory of Nevin and to create a trophy which symbolises the strength of Irish rugby and celebrate the achievement of the winner.”

Cara Murphy trained as a silversmith at Glasgow School of Art and the Royal College of Art, London. Since the early 1990s she has run her own silversmithing practice in Northern Ireland, creating silverware for both private and public commission. Click here for further information.

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